Moraya Blog


Home Prices Rose Again!


NEW YORK – Home prices in April rose for the first time in seven months as government tax credits bolstered the housing market. But the rebound may be short-lived now that the incentives have expired.

The Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller 20-city home price index released Tuesday posted an 0.8 percent gain. It had fallen in each of the past six months.

Eighteen of 20 cities showed price increases in April from March. Washington, San Francisco and Dallas each posted gains of 2 percent or more. Eleven cities reversed their declines from the month before.

Only Miami and New York recorded price declines. Prices in New York were the lowest since 2004.

Nationally, prices have risen 3.8 percent from their April 2009 bottom. But they remain 30 percent below their July 2006 peak.

The overall price gains highlight the impact of the federal tax credits for homebuyers at the start of the traditionally strong spring selling season. Buyers rushed to purchase before the tax credits expired at the end of April. The numbers are likely to drop in the next report.

“Demand for homes has softened since then, and that is likely to weigh on prices, particularly in May and June,” wrote TD Bank Financial Group economist Martin Schwerdtfeger Tuesday.


Naples Area Statistics for May 2010

Condo’s over 2 Million

61% increase in closed sales over May 2009

27% increase in closed sales year to date

35% increase in Median Home Price!

May 2009 Median Home Price was $2,075,000.

May 2010 Median Home Price was $3,200,000

28% decrease in inventory!

NAPLES, Fla.-June 18, 2010- All geographic areas in Naples experienced a significant increase in both pending and closed sales in May according to a report released by the Naples Area Board of REALTORS® (NABOR), which tracks home listings and sales within Collier County (excluding Marco Island).
For the 12 months ending May 2010, overall pending sales in all geographic areas increased 47 percent from the 12 months ending May 2009. The increase ranged from 33 percent in East Naples to 56 percent in South Naples. “Sales are increasing in not only all geographic locations but in all price ranges as well. This is a good sign,” said Tom Bringardner, President of Premier Properties.

The median closed price increased 9 percent in May 2009.

The report provides annual comparisons of single-family home and condo sales (via the SunshineMLS), price ranges, geographic segmentation and includes an overall market summary. Overall pending sales increased 9 percent to 887 contracts in May 2010 compared to 812 contracts in May 2009. For the 12 months ending May 2010, closed sales increased 48 percent with 8,152 sales compared to 5,495 sales for the 12 months ending May 2009.
Single-family pending sales saw a 10 percent increase with 477 contracts in May 2010 compared to 433 contracts in May 2009.
Condo sales saw a 25 percent increase with 398 sales in May 2010 compared to 318 sales in May 2009.
The available inventory decreased 10 percent to 9,006 in May 2010 compared to 10,046 in the same month last year.
All signs point to the beginning of a sellers market in some areas



Low taxes, warm sunshine and deep discounts on real estate. No wonder IRS data shows the wealthiest among us are headed south.

Surprise: America’s wealthy like warm weather and low taxes. That’s the takeaway from IRS data, analyzed by Forbes, on moves between counties. We looked for counties that the rich are moving to in big numbers.

Topping the list: Collier County, Fla., which includes the city of Naples. Tax returns accounting for 15,150 people showed moves to Collier County from other parts of the country in 2008, the latest year for which IRS data is available. Their average reported income: $76,161 per person–equivalent to $304,644 for a family of four. Although slightly more taxpayers moved out of Collier County than into it, the departing residents’ average income came out to just $26,128 per person.

Households that moved to Collier County principally came from other parts of Florida, with Lee, Miami Dade, Broward, Palm Beach and Orange counties leading the list. Big northern cities also sent lots of migrants: Cook County, Ill. (home to Chicago); Oakland County, Mich. (near Detroit); and Suffolk County, N.Y. (on Long Island) each sent more than 100 people to Collier County during 2008.

In second place is Greene County, Ga., with a population of just 15,743 at the Census Bureau’s last estimate. The IRS data show that in 2008, 788 people moved to the county, about 75 miles east of Atlanta.

Rounding out the top five: Nassau County, Fla., near Jacksonville; Llano County, Texas, 70 miles northwest of Austin; and Walton County, Fla., 80 miles east of Pensacola.

The dominance of the list by Florida and Texas–the former has eight of the top 20 counties, the latter four– makes sense to Robert Shrum, manager of state affairs at the Tax Foundation in Washington, D.C., since neither state has an income tax. “If you’re a high-income earner, then that, from a tax perspective, is going to be a driving decider if you’re going to move to one of those two states,” Shrum says.

After accounting for property taxes, Shrum’s analysis shows that Texas has the fourth-lowest personal tax burden in the country, and Florida has the eighth lowest. Shrum also points to eight states that have targeted wealthy households with extra-high tax brackets: California, New Jersey, New York, Maryland, Hawaii, Oregon, Connecticut and Wisconsin. Six of the top 10 counties the rich are fleeing are located in those states.

Pitkin County, Colo., home to the pricey Aspen ski community, where home listings average more than $3.5 million, saw an exodus of rich people in 2008 as the economy began to contract. The 962 tax filers and dependents who left Pitkin had an average income of $71,473 per capita, while the equivalent figure for those moving to the county was $30,000 lower. Of those leaving Pitkin County, 224 moved to neighboring Garfield County where, according to real estate information service Trulia, homes list for 75% less than those in Pitkin County. IRS data also show movement from the resort area to cities like New York, Chicago and San Francisco.

Behind the Numbers

To find places the rich are moving, Forbes used IRS data on household moves broken down by county and income. We included counties where arriving households are richer than households that didn’t move and departing households are poorer than households that didn’t move. The final ranking orders counties by the difference in per-capita income between incoming households and those that didn’t move.

Our ranking of places the rich are fleeing essentially reverses these criteria, looking for counties where departing households are wealthier than the population as a whole and where incoming households are poorer.

In order to find patterns among the wealthy, we restricted the lists to counties where departing or arriving households had per-capita incomes of $35,000 or more. That figure is equivalent to an annual income of $140,000 for a family of four–a very high income for any large subset of the American population (of 3,142 counties with IRS data, only 130 have average incomes above this level). And in order to avoid statistical anomalies, we only included counties with at least 500 people listed as arriving or departing.

This technique essentially finds new hot spots–places that aren’t necessarily wealthy now but where wealthy people are moving. Some upscale places like Westchester County, N.Y., and Teton County, Wy., don’t make the list because people moving into those counties aren’t as rich as the people who already live there.

The IRS warns that these counts are only approximations; because they don’t include households that don’t file income tax returns, poor and elderly people are underrepresented. These counts also don’t include returns filed after late-September 2009–a small fraction of total returns that tends to include some very rich people with complex returns who file for extensions.

Top 5 Places Where America’s Money Is Moving

No. 1: Collier County, Fla.
Arriving average income per capita: $76,161
Departing average income per capita: $26,128
Stationary household average income per capita: $49,959
Total arriving people: 15,150
Total departing people: 16,802
Top origin: Lee County, Fla. (2,987 people)

No. 2: Greene County, Ga.
Arriving average income per capita: $56,414
Departing average income per capita: $25,432
Stationary household average income per capita: $30,875
Total arriving people: 788
Total departing people: 778
Top origin: Putnam County, Ga. (76 people)

No. 3: Nassau County, Fla.
Arriving average income per capita: $51,833
Departing average income per capita: $29,312
Stationary household average income per capita: $32,306
Total arriving people: 4,785
Total departing people: 3,690
Top origin: Duval County, Fla. (1,721 people)

No. 4: Llano County, Texas
Arriving average income per capita: $44,324
Departing average income per capita: $22,541
Stationary household average income per capita: $26,201
Total arriving people: 1,192
Total departing people: 1,018
Top origin: Burnet County, Texas (312 people)

No. 5: Walton County, Fla.
Arriving average income per capita: $45,591
Departing average income per capita: $28,360
Stationary household average income per capita: $30,553
Total arriving people: 3,939
Total departing people: 3,230
Top origin: Okaloosa County, Fla. (1,148 people)

Taken from yahoo iStock_000000679828XSmall