The Impact Of Zika On Our Space

Summit Valuations, LLC, a full service valuation company, announced today the release of its latest Residential Real Estate Market Overview, this time using information collected during July 2016, the most current available industry data. The report includes analysis from Summit’s Chief Valuation Officer, Mark Melikian, author of the report, and focuses, in part, on the potential impact the Zika virus may be having on Florida real estate prices.

“In July 2016, Zika virus fears hit South Florida, specifically the Wynwood neighborhood of Miami and Miami Beach,” Melikian said. “We wanted to see if we could find any evidence in the most recent real estate data to indicate what effect, if any, this scare was having on real estate prices. Like other environmental events that we studied in our analysis, we expect the virus to have an impact on prices in markets in which it is found. However, it’s too early to see any change other than expected seasonal changes in the data we studied.”

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In July, the month’s supply of housing, the seasonally adjusted annual number of homes sold, the unemployment rate and mortgage rates all decreased, on a year-over-year basis. The median sales price and the pending home sales index both increased during the month.

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On a regional level, the South had the highest number of existing home sales and the West had the highest median price. The West experienced the largest percentage increase in the number of seasonally adjusted existing home sales while the Midwest had the largest percentage gain in median sales price, month-over-month.

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As for Zika’s ultimate impact, Melikian said, “While it’s too early to tell what impact Zika will have in Florida, we can take lessons from previous environmental events, such as the 1979 nuclear power plant accident at Three Mile Island and the 1982 volcanic eruption fear in Mammoth Lakes, California. Our analysis indicates that residential real estate prices may decline in the impacted markets, but are then likely to level or recover over an extended period of time. We will continue to monitor this situation.”

Summit’s report provides data made public by the U.S. Government, the National Association of Realtors and Freddie Mac. Melikian has been appraising real estate since 1987 and has been active in nationwide valuation services since 2005. He has successfully led teams of analysts, developed valuation services to meet client needs and represented buyers and sellers in secondary market loan tie out meetings. Much of his recent experience has focused on forensic reviews of REO properties for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Mr. Melikian holds a B.S. in Business Administration from San Diego State University.

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