ATTOM released a special report looking at condominium sales and prices in oceanfront counties around the U.S. The report, following up on the June 2021 collapse of the beachfront Champlain Towers South condominiums in Florida, shows that median condo values and price increases in oceanfront counties in the second quarter of 2021 closely tracked national trends.
The report found that median condo prices in 50 percent of those oceanfront counties surpassed the typical $305,000 condo price nationwide, while 50 percent fell below.
It also revealed that median condominium prices increased during the second quarter of 2021 by at least 20 percent, measured year over year, in slightly more than half of the oceanfront counties analyzed. Less-expensive oceanfront condo markets, concentrated in the South, generally showed bigger year-over-year gains, while the most expensive counties, located mainly in the West, showed the smallest.
The report looked at 86 counties around U.S. that bordered the Atlantic Ocean, Pacific Ocean or the Gulf of Mexico and had enough data to analyze, meaning that they had at least 25 condo sales in the second quarter of 2021, the first quarter of 2021 and the second quarter of last year. The report sought to analyze condo price trends in areas similar to the one where the building collapsed in Surfside, FL.
The second-quarter-of-2021 condo price gains in oceanfront counties came at a time when the national housing market boom was roaring into its 10th year, with median single-family home and condo prices rising annually by more than 15 percent across a majority of the U.S. Condo values have continued to rise in oceanfront areas amid a combination of historically low mortgage rates and the ongoing appeal of living along or near oceanside communities.
While the Coronavirus pandemic that hit last year remains a threat to the economy and the housing market, there are especially vulnerable areas, including the South, where fewer people are vaccinated and the latest virus variant has led to a new surge of cases. But second-quarter home sales data shows that oceanfront condo markets continue to ride the decade-long national housing market boom.
“Condos in oceanfront areas appear to be right in the middle of the pack when it comes to the ongoing market boom. Broadly speaking, they are worth close to what condos around the nation are worth and are gaining value at around the same pace as all homes in the U.S.,” said Todd Teta, chief product officer with ATTOM. “We will keep an eye on this trend to see if it changes following the Florida incident.”
He added that, “It’s important to note that this report is not, in any way, an attempt to show where condos may be vulnerable to the kind of disaster that hit in Florida. That’s not what our data can address. Rather, it’s a look at the markets for those kinds of homes, which look to be going strong.”
South has most condo sales in oceanfront counties during second quarter
The Southern region of the U.S. had 69,616, or 67 percent, of the 104,359 condo sales in the 86 counties with sufficient data to analyze during the second quarter of 2021. (The report included condos directly on the waterfront, as well as those inland, in each oceanfront county.)
Florida had the most sales in the second quarter (58,404), followed by California (20,042), Hawaii (4,686), South Carolina (4,617) and Massachusetts (4,198).
The five counties with the most second-quarter transactions accounted for 37 percent of all condo sales in the areas analyzed. They were Palm Beach County (West Palm Beach), FL (10,454 condo sales); Miami-Dade County, FL (9,396 sales); Los Angeles County, CA (7,228 sales); Broward County (Fort Lauderdale), FL (6,890 sales) and San Diego County, CA (4,740 sales).
Condo prices exceed national median in half of oceanfront counties
Median condo prices in 43 of the 86 oceanfront counties with enough data to analyze, or 50 percent, exceeded the national median condo value of $305,000 in the second quarter of 2021.
Among the 86 counties analyzed, the highest second-quarter median condo prices were in San Francisco County, CA ($1,175,000); San Mateo County, CA (outside San Francisco) ($915,500); Kings County (Brooklyn), NY ($876,250); Marin County, CA (outside San Francisco) ($723,000) and Santa Cruz County ($693,500).
In the South, the highest second-quarter median prices were in Walton County, FL (along the Florida panhandle) ($475,000); Monroe County (Key West), FL ($465,150); Nassau County, FL (north of Jacksonville) ($416,750); Baldwin County, AL (east of Mobile) ($351,563) and St. Johns County (St. Augustine), FL ($329,414).
The lowest median condo prices in the second quarter of 2021 among the 86 counties in the report were in Atlantic County (Atlantic City), NJ ($124,000); Jefferson Parish, LA (west of New Orleans) ($135,000); Citrus County, FL (north of Tampa) ($145,000); Mobile County, AL ($148,000) and Onslow County (Jacksonville), NC ($155,000).
Condo prices up more than 20 percent, rising in majority of oceanfront counties
Median condo prices increased by at least 20 percent from the second quarter of 2020 to the second quarter of 2021 in 47 of the 86 oceanfront counties with sufficient data to analyze, or 55 percent. Median values rose by at least 30 percent in 28 of the 86 counties (33 percent).
The largest increases in median home prices from the second quarter of 2020 to the second quarter of 2021 were in Pasco County, FL (north of Tampa) (median up 245 percent); Galveston County, TX (up 102 percent); Indian River County (Vero Beach), FL (up 68 percent); St. Lucie County (Port St. Lucie), FL (up 66 percent) and St. Johns County (St. Augustine), FL (up 61 percent).
Median condo prices decreased in seven of the 86 counties, let by Santa Rosa County, FL (east of Pensacola) (median down 22 percent); Onslow County (Jacksonville), NC (down 18 percent); Suffolk County (Boston), MA (down 11 percent); Juneau County, AK (down 10 percent) and Queens County, NY (down 8 percent).
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