The numbers are in for December, and thus, 2015 closes substantially stronger than 2014. The month proved to be another boomer for multi-family in our three biggest markets of Miami, Tampa and Orlando. On my “Florida Home Sales” chart, December was an interesting month. The fewest number of homes were for sale since August 2013, while the average price was the highest since I have been reporting this info. Also, the months’ supply is the lowest since I began. I noticed an anomaly in that The Villages seems to be in a slump during the 4th quarter.
Some comparative year-over-year highlights are:
1 – The 2015 single family permits were up almost 14% over 2014.
2 – In multi-family, 2015 activity was over 43% above that of 2014.
3 – The lumber and plywood markets are soft. Some items are considerably cheaper than this time last year. I spoke with Don Hayes of Sunbelt Forest Products, who generates the attached charts. His explanation is simply that harsh weather during the first weeks of the year stopped construction (and most everything else) in key market areas. He added that the market popped up this week and is expected to climb.
I am still hearing and reading that 2016 is expected to be copy of 2015, which is a survivable outcome. There is plenty external noise keeping a lid on the prosperity of our industry and our lives. However, this is Florida and the boomers are on the move. I still feel confident that business will edge upward as the year progresses. Florida Homes Sales Info