Thursday, July 28, 2011

Aventura Faces Condo Resale Shortage -- according to Miami Herald [and me]

Thought you may be interested in this article from this week's Miami Herald Business Monday describing how real estate transactions in Aventura are up 27% for the first six months of 2011 over the same time period last year. Inventory overall is shrinking as buyers are coming from all over the world to purchase condos either for investment and/or a second home. Many first time buyers and people moving to the area also are taking advantage of the currently low interest rates.

The article addresses distressed sales [foreclosures and short sales], which according to the MLS show that 38% of condo/townhome sales the first half of 2011 as compared to 36% of distressed sales Jan - June 2010. Many of the distressed sales need rennovations or upgrades to be equal to a resale recently rennovated.

If you read the article, it states that Aventura prices today are 46% below where they were at their peak in 2006. What it neglects to mention [and what annoys me whenever I see these numbers reported] is that prices in 2006 were double ABOVE what they were five years before then [2002]. Right now only 16% of 923 condos/townhomes for sale are distressed sales and those that have gone under contract recently have received multiple offers. The market is definitely shifting in Aventura.

Thought you might find this information of interest. If I may continue to be your real estate resource for yourself and referrals, it would be a privilege. Regards.

Here is the link to the article.

Friday, April 22, 2011

City of Aventura Residents Have Access to Easy to Use Prescription Discount Card Launched Today

City of Aventura
Government Center
19200 West Country Club Drive ● Aventura, Florida 33180
For Immediate Release
Date: 4/22/11
Contact: Eric M. Soroka, City Manager
Phone: (305) 466-8910
Fax: (305) 466-8919
City of Aventura Residents Have Access to Easy‐to‐Use Prescription
Discount Card Launched Today
In the current economic climate, where people are watching their spending, discount card can
offer average savings of 20 percent off the retail price of prescription drugs
The City of Aventura today launched a program to help provide residents with some relief from the high
cost of prescription drugs. The city is making free prescription discount cards available to city residents
through a program sponsored by the National League of Cities (NLC). The discount cards offer city
residents average savings of 20 percent off the retail price of commonly prescribed medications.
The discount cards may be used by all residents of the City of Aventura and has no restrictions based on
the resident’s age, income level, or existing health coverage. The discount card benefits not only those
without insurance, but can also be used by underinsured residents to obtain prescriptions that are
excluded from health benefit plans. The NLC card can be used when purchasing prescription drugs at
most pharmacies around the city, as well as at more than 60,000 participating retail pharmacies across
the country.
“In the current economic climate, where many people are watching what they spend, the City of
Aventura is happy to partner with the National League of Cities to make this prescription discount card
available for our residents,” said City Manager, Eric Soroka. “Whether or not an individual has
prescription coverage, this program can make it easier for our residents to afford the medications they
need to deal with a short‐term illness or stay healthy by managing a chronic condition.”
Stay informed! Get City news instantly by visiting MyAventura’s Message Center on the City’s
website at and subscribe to our email publications.
Cards can be printed from the Internet at and are available at the Aventura
Government Center and the Aventura Community Recreation Center at no cost to city residents. City
residents can visit to access program tools or call toll‐free 1‐888‐620‐1749 for
assistance with the program.
“Not only does the NLC prescription discount card help residents save money on their medications, it is
easy to use,” said Eric Soroka, City Manager. “Aventura residents only have to show their card when
purchasing medication at one of the many participating pharmacies. There is no enrollment form
required to get a card, no membership fee of any kind and city residents and their family members can
use the card any time their prescriptions are not covered by insurance.”
The discount card program is administered by CVS Caremark.
About The National League of Cities
The National League of Cities (NLC) is the nation’s oldest and largest organization devoted to
strengthening and promoting cities as centers of opportunity, leadership and governance. NLC is a
resource and advocate for 19,000 cities, towns and villages, representing more than 218 million
Americans. To learn more about NLC, go to
Eric M. Soroka
City Manager

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Pending Home Sales Continue to Rise

January 2011 Dade PHS: Miami-Dade Pending Home Sales Continue to Rise Submitted by on January 27, 2011 - 11:33am
in Press
View the Printed Press Release:
pendingsalesDadejan012711.pdf.Miami, FL – Total cumulative pending home sales – including single-family homes and condominiums - in Miami-Dade County increased 28 percent in January compared to a year earlier, from 8,388 to 10,698, and 2.5 percent, from 10,437, compared to the previous month according to the MIAMI Association of REALTORS and the Southeast Florida Multiple Listing Service (SEFMLS).

“Over the last few months, we have seen pending and closed sales gain momentum while inventory levels continue to drop, said Jack H. Levine, 2011 chairman of the board of the MIAMI Association of REALTORS. “This trend in rising sales, particularly for condominiums, coupled with significant reductions in housing inventory, is a very positive sign for the local market. We expect this trend to continue as the job market, economy, and consumer confidence improve.”

Pending Condominium Contract Activity on the Rise

Pending sales of condominiums in Miami-Dade County continue to outperform that of single-family homes. In January, condominium pending sales increased a significant 37.2 percent compared to a year ago, from 4,647 to 6,376 and increased 3.3 percent from 6,173 the previous month. Pending sales of single-family homes in January increased 15.531 percent from the previous year, from 3,741 to 4,322, and 1.4 percent from the previous month, when pending single-family home sales totaled 4,264.

Significant Reduction in Housing Inventory

The Miami-Dade real estate market continues to experience drops in housing inventory. Supply for all housing types has dropped 47 percent since mid-2008 and eight percent compared to a year ago. Just over the last month, inventory in the county dropped six percent, pointing to increased demand for local properties.

“Local buyers are taking advantage of the many opportunities the South Florida offers, including high affordability that continues to boost contract activity,” said 2011 MIAMI Association of REALTORS Residential President Ralph E. De Martino. “International buyers continue to have a significant impact in rising sales and declining inventory in the local market.”

Increased pending sales are an indication of increased future sales. A sale is listed as pending when a contract is signed but the transaction has not closed, though the sale usually is finalized within one or two months of signing.

MIAMI Association of REALTORS
The MIAMI Association of REALTORS was chartered by the National Association of Realtors in 1920 and is celebrating more than 90 years of service to Realtors, the buying and selling public, and the communities in South Florida. Comprised of four organizations, the Residential Association, the Realtors Commercial Alliance, the Broward County Board of Governors, and the International Council, it represents more than 25,000 real estate professionals in all aspects of real estate sales, marketing, and brokerage. It is the largest local association in the National Association of Realtors, and has partnerships with more than 60 international organizations worldwide. MIAMI’s official website is


Monday, January 31, 2011

Pending home sales continue to increase

Rismedia: Pending home sales improved in December 2010. In South Florida, pending home sales [the number of listed homes and condos that went under contract] has increased each month. Although the number of homes and condos being sold continues to increase, prices have not. As fewer homes go on the market and more homes are being bought, the number of homes for sale decreases, which should lead to price stabilization.

Want to know what's going on in your neighborhood? Contact me for a confidential and no obligation evaluation.

Lori Fein, MBA, Realtor, Prudential Florida Realty 305-336-1272/
I give you the information to make smart decisions.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Selling? What improvements should be made before listing

Thought this was a great article on the subject from Hope you find it useful, too. Please click on the link to take you to their site.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Miami a top city to buy or rent, according to leading real estate website

According to the RealDeal, a report by San Francisco-based Trulia says Miami and Las Vegas are the top cities to buy rather than rent. Buyers and renters currently on the fence about whether to buy or rent should note that interest rates are still at record lows and prices seem to be stabalizing in some areas. Inventory -- the number of for sale properties in any given market -- is also a barameter. In many markets like Aventura, inventory is declining as buyers are coming from all over the world to buy Aventura, Miami Beach, Sunny Isles Beach, Hallandale and Hollywood. Want to get started now? go to or contact me for a personal buyers consultation.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Who Purchased a Home in Florida, Why and How.. Report just released by Florida Association of Realtors

this just in from the Florida Association of Realtors [FAR]...

Florida Realtors Report: 2010 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers

FAR released details from the 2010 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers in Florida, which describes characteristics and motivation of today’s homebuyers.

I found it interesting and thought you may, too. Here is the link:

Characteristics of homebuyers

• Forty-four percent of recent homebuyers were first-time owners compared to 50 percent nationwide.
• The typical first-time buyer was 31 years old, while the typical repeat buyer was 54 years old; nationwide, first-time buyers were typically 30 and repeat buyers were 50 years old.
• The 2009 median household income of Florida buyers was $63,300 – slightly lower than the median income of buyers nationwide, $72,200.
• The median income was $53,500 among first-time buyers and $84,300 among repeat buyers.
• Nineteen percent of recent homebuyers were single females, and 11 percent were single males. Nationwide, twenty percent of recent buyers were single females, and 12 percent were single males.
• For 30 percent of recent homebuyers, the primary reason for the home purchase was a desire to own a home.

Characteristics of homes purchased

• New home purchases were at the lowest level in nine years nationwide – 15 percent of all recent home purchases. But in Florida, 18 percent of homes were new.
• The typical home purchased was 1,800 square feet, built in 1998, and it had three bedrooms and two full bathrooms.
• Seventy-eight percent of homebuyers purchased a detached single-family home.
• The median price of a home was $161,000 compared to $179,000 nationwide.
• When considering the purchase of a home, 73 percent of buyers considered commuting costs very or somewhat important.

The home search process

• For four in ten homebuyers, the first step in the home-buying process was looking online for properties.
• Eighty-nine percent of buyers used the Internet to search for homes.
• Real estate agents were viewed as a useful information source by 98 percent of the buyers who used an agent while searching for a home.
• The typical buyer searched for 12 weeks and viewed 15 homes. This compares to 12 weeks and 12 homes viewed by the typical buyer nationwide.

Home buying and real estate professionals

• Seventy-nine percent of buyers purchased their home through a real estate agent or broker.
• Seven percent of buyers purchased a home in foreclosure – slightly higher than the share of buyers nationally.
• Forty-four percent of buyers found their agent through a referral from a friend or family member.
• Seventy-two percent of buyers would definitely use their real estate again or recommend the same agent to others.

Financing the home purchase

• Eighty percent of homebuyers financed their home purchase compared to a much higher percentage, 91 percent, of buyers nationwide.
• The typical buyer financed 93 percent of their home purchase.
• Forty-six percent of buyers said they made some sacrifices, such as reducing spending on luxury items, entertainment or clothing.
• Twenty-eight percent of buyers reported their mortgage application and approval process was somewhat more difficult than expected, and 16 percent reported it was much more difficult than expected.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Short sales up 49 percent in South Florida

This just in from the
Short sales up 49 percent in South Florida
January 05, 2011 12:45PM
Residential short sales rose 49 percent year-over-year in 2010, according to a report from Condo Vultures. There were 16,800 residential properties sold in the tri-county area in 2010 that were transacted at prices below the outstanding loan amount owed by sellers. In 2009, only 11,300 properties were sold in short sales, according to an analysis by Condo Vulture's sell-side brokerage wing, CVR Realty. "All indications are that shortfalls will increasingly be the primary focus of buyers searching for properties in the South Florida market," said Hernan Osorio, director of sales at CVR. TRD