Andrew Darda
O: (239) 319-2357
C: 239-849-3883
Mike Darda
O: (239) 319-2357
C: 239-851-6494

A Review of the Year in Lee County Real Estate

Thursday, December 22, 2016

As we are now so close to the end of another year, we thought we'd take a look back over the past 12 months in Lee County real estate.

Overall, 2016 has been incredibly positive with healthy price growth in most sectors and high sales levels.

At the Darda Group it has been another year of significant achievement and one of our personal highlights was making the highest value sale in Buckingham for nine years.

This sale amply demonstrated that there has been great interest in property right across the board in 2016. We've seen remarkable levels of buyer enthusiasm.

While cash is an important component in our market, there's no question that the ultra-low mortgage rates we enjoyed for most of the year were a significant purchaser motivation, not least for the growing numbers of first time buyers that have made such a strong comeback in 2016.

The election had little effect on real estate until it happened. Almost immediately following the result, stocks began a steady climb that continues to this day. Mortgage rates, which do better when safe haven bond purchasing is in vogue, suffered as a result. However the reality is that they had been artificially low for a very long time and we have arguably seen a long overdue market correction as the year draws to a close. And although they have risen steadily, rates are still extremely competitive on any historic scale.

The recent upward trend in stocks is incredibly positive for an area like ours that is such a strong location for luxury second homes and we'll look at this in a bit more detail in next week's blog.

Low inventory of available homes for sale is a nationwide issue and Lee County has not been immune to this problem, not least due to consistently high buyer demand.

Over this year we've seen some strong upticks in the number of condos for sale, not least because Canadian snowbirds have been selling to cash in on the US/Canadian dollar exchange rate. There was also an early start to the winter season, with inventory numbers up in early fall on the previous year. Despite these influences, overall inventory levels have declined for most of the year, creating great opportunities for sellers in terms of reduced competition and more robust asking prices. The flip side, of course, is less choice for the buyer. It will be interesting to see if continued growing confidence in jobs and the economy persuades more homeowners to finally make the move they've been putting off for years.

In conclusion, 2016 has lived up to its billing of being the best year for real estate in a decade. There's every reason at present to expect more of the same in 2017, with widespread predictions for another good year.

We'd be delighted to have an informal chat with you concerning your real estate aspirations in 2017.

Happy Holidays.

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