The 2018 real estate market was a fairly brisk market, especially considering that much of the Keys was still recovering from Hurricane Irma in September of 2017. While it's true that many "investors" flooded the Keys, hoping to buy damaged properties from desperate sellers at bargain prices, many of the homes in the Upper Keys suffered little to minor damage during the storm. Still, many long-time residents chose to leave the Keys permanently.
So far, 2019 has not been as intense as 2018. Investors looking for deals have left to look in other storm damaged areas, such as the Florida Panhandle after Hurricane Michael struck. Open water home and canal front homes saw a slight reduction in prices, particularly open water homes.
|Click to enlarge - Properties MM 70 to MM106|
Condominiums have also seen an increase in interest from buyers. Condos appeal to many buyers because they have everything a buyer is looking for - pool, tennis, security, etc. They are also easier to use as a vacation rental unit than a single family home, since most neighborhoods of single family homes restrict the minimum length of legal rentals to be 28 days or longer. But many condos can offer weekly or even daily rentals, making for more potential rental income.
What will the next quarter of 2019 look like compared to 2018. Time will tell, but I believe the market will do fine.
** The data here is for properties located in the Upper Florida Keys - from Mile Marker 70 to Mile Marker 106 - and is an average of all sales. Each group encompasses a variety of homes, from luxury homes to basic construction. Properties sold both above and below the averages sales prices shown here.