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Emerald Coast Inventory Level

Fall is a great time of year to visit the Emerald Coast with mild weather and smaller crowds.  We expect this year will be a little busier.  The presence and influence of online schooling and remote working have changed normal school, work, and vacation cycles.  Some schools are not having a spring break, and some are having them in January!  As a result, it is expected that our normal real estate patterns will change as well.

The chart below compares the number of pended contracts in 2019 and 2020.  As the chart below details, market activity in 2020 dropped during the height of the COVID-19 quarantine period but started to recover as soon as the economy started to reopen.

While there has been a gentle decline in activity since 8/1/2020 it remains well above 2019 levels.  In fact, it is at or near the peak levels of 2019.  However, this decline should not immediately be interpreted as reduction of demand.  One theory is that the market has a supply problem.

A common refrain heard from real estate agents in the market is, “There’s no inventory.”  What the agent is really saying is that it is hard to find houses for their buyer.  Here is why that is the case.  The chart below compares the number of daily active listings in 2019 and 2020.

As expected, the chart reflects the large increase in inventory during the short-term rental ban.   Until recently; however, inventory levels in 2020 were well above 2019 levels.  Therefore, “No inventory” is not an accurate description of the market.  It is the increased number of buyers shopping the same level of inventory, resulting in multiple offers on a property and properties sold before they are officially on the market.  Therefore, the perception of a decline in demand is not accurate.  A better description is that buyers quickly absorbed the excess inventory in place during the short-term rental ban.  While the excess inventory is gone, buyers are not, and they are in many cases waiting for the property that fits their needs to become available to purchase.

These buyers are not “flippers” in the 2005 sense of the word.  They are looking for a place to work remotely or to retreat due to the Emerald Coast’s relative safety compared to larger cities.  These buyers are true users of property and have decided to own a piece of the Emerald Coast.

If you are seller thinking about selling your property, it is clear buyers are in the market looking to buy property.  The Premier Property Group would welcome the opportunity to sell your property.  If you are looking to purchase something, it is not to late!  With an increase in the number of “pocket listings”, its critical to rely on your agent at The Premier Property Group to find these hidden gems.  As an agent with the largest independent brokerage on the Emerald Coast, their knowledge of the local market is unmatched.  Let your agent know what you are looking for so they can tell you as soon as your perfect place hits the market.

If you have any questions, please reach out to your agent.  They are your trusted real estate advisor.

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