Miami home sales rise on low prices
Home sales in the greater Miami area grew for the seventh consecutive month in June as low prices fueled demand taking the place of last year's federal homebuyer tax credit. The Miami area, which includes the counties of Miami-Dade, Palm Beach and Broward, recorded 9,857 home sales in June, up 1.4% from May and 6% from last year, real estate data firm DataQuick said Friday. Home sales rose as prices slipped, with the median sales price falling 10% from June of last year. The spike in sales was fueled by a combination of lower prices and excess supply in the market. Meanwhile, new home sales continued their downward spiral as builders unable to compete with distressed homes lost further momentum in the market. In June, the greater Miami area had 526 closings for new home construction, up 1.5% from May, but down 9% from year ago levels and the lowest new-home record for the month of June. New home sales made up only 5.3% of completed transactions last month, but traditionally represent about 19% of the market. The luxury market in Miami is doing well with 103 houses and condos selling for $2 million or more in June, up 21.2% from May and 27.2% from a year ago. Foreign investors are fueling some of the demand, representing roughly 6.5% of all homes sold in the region in June, DataQuick said. About 76% of those buyers had Canadian addresses. The remaining bargain hunters came from Argentina, Venezuela, Finland and Brazil. Write to Kerri Panchuk.