Home sales rise but prices fall in 2011

Local real estate brokers experiencing boost

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. - On many streets in South Florida, there is at least one 'for sale' sign. But some of the signs could be disappearing sooner than expected.

Palm Beach County real estate broker Rodney Forbes moved from Atlanta five years ago, just as the housing market was in a free fall. "Probably the worst time to be in real estate, and it only continued to go down from there," said Forbes. But there are new and promising statistics for Forbes and the local real estate market.

Sales of existing single-family homes in the first three months of this year increased thirty-three percent in Palm Beach County compared to the first quarter in 2010. Nearly 2,600 hundred homes were sold. However the median home price has dropped about eighteen percent so far in 2011, to below $194,000.

Forbes believes that with each sale there is a ripple effect that puts money in his pockets and in the pockets of other. He thinks most of that money will stay in our state. "You've got appraisers, inspectors, you've got lawyers that do the closing. You've got property insurance companies. All of that is tied to the sale," said Forbes.

The Treasure Coast saw a very different trend in the Florida Realtors report; a four percent increase in median home prices and a fourteen percent drop in sales. Though these numbers do include some positives, experts say it could be years before the market is close to what it was a few years ago.

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