Lots and lots of properties are for sale on Miami Beach, and that is neither a play on words, nor an exaggeration. The marketplace is flooded with properties that remain unsold month after month, as more and more homes become available for sale. An examination of the luxury market in Miami Beach tells a dire tale.
As of today, there are 40 listed waterfront properties for sale on the Venetian Islands, with 11 homes for sale on Rivo Alto Island, 13 homes for sale on Dilido Island, 3 homes for sale on San Marino Island, and another 13 properties for sale on San Marco and Biscayne Islands. The 5 islands mentioned, along with Belle Isle, comprise the Venetian Islands.
Palm Island and Hibiscus Island, which lie just south of the Venetian Islands, are also part of Miami Beach. On those 2 islands, a total of 31 waterfront properties are listed for sale, with 16 available waterfront homes on Palm Island and 15 on Hibiscus Island. The 4 Sunset Islands lie just northeast of the Venetian Islands, and 14 waterfront properties are listed on the Sunset Islands, with 7 listed homes on Sunset Island I and II, and 7 on Sunset Island III and IV.
North Bay Road is located on the west side of Miami Beach, and is well known for its exclusivity. It has been home to the Bee Gees, Jennifer Lopez, Thalia, Shakira, and a number of other well-known personalities. There are 16 waterfront homes listed on North Bay Road.
Who is going to buy all of these homes? Are the buyers out there? The answer is, yes. However, the resistance to purchasing a property is greater than ever, as buyers sit on the sidelines, afraid to buy a home that might not appreciate for some time to come. An additional problem is that the banks are still not lending money, so even when a buyer is ready, willing, and financially able, the banks won’t close the loans.
What does it all mean? Buyers must be savvier than ever before, and sellers must realize that by lowering the asking prices on their homes, they are not giving their properties away, as many sellers have expressed. Sellers who really want their properties sold, are going to necessarily have to become much more realistic, and realize the market is no longer what it was a few years ago; and there is no evidence whatsoever that indicates an appreciating housing market in the near future.
When properties on small lots are being listed on the Venetian Islands for up to almost 8 million dollars, and other properties on North Bay Road, on larger lots, are listed for less than 4 million dollars, something is amiss. North Bay Road homes have generally had substantially more value than Venetian Island homes.
The news is not all bad, however, because there has been a slight increase in activity, with more buyers appearing in the marketplace. When the banks start lending, things will improve, and when sellers become more realistic, more homes will be sold.