Florida Poised to Outshine Other U.S. Real Estate Markets in 2017


SARASOTA, FLORIDA, February 14th 2017 – There’s a consensus among industry analysts that Florida could outperform the projections of a 4 percent increase in home values nationwide in 2017. Lawrence Yun, senior economist at the National Association of Realtors (NAR), and Holden Lewis, a senior mortgage analyst at Bankrate.com, agree that continuing improvement in job growth in the Sunshine State augurs well for its more robust performance than the rest of the country.

On the regional level, Xena Vallone, 2017 President of the Realtor® Association of Sarasota and Manatee, likewise notes that 2016 was a “healthy and sustainable year” for the local market. She attributed this feat to a sharp drop in distressed home sales and a shift towards a more balanced market. The two counties’ home market inventory rose by nearly 25 percent last year, with the level already in equilibrium for Sarasota condos for sale at 5.5 months’ supply.

Robust Price Gains

Florida Poised to Outshine Other U.S. Real Estate Markets in 2017

Increases in median sale prices for single family homes were also registered in both Sarasota and Manatee counties last year. The median sales price in Sarasota was $250,050 in 2016, an 11.4 percent gain from 2015. Single family homes in Manatee County posted 2016 median sales price of $275,146, up 5.8 percent.

Sarasota condos’ 2016 median price was $210,000, up 7.7 percent over 2015. In Manatee, the median condo price last year was $170,000, up 6.3 percent.

Traditional home sales in the Sarasota‒Manatee area posted an increase last year, in contrast with the decline in closed deals on foreclosures and short sales. In 2016, distressed property sales slipped 57.1 percent to 1,290 from 3,004 units in 2015. Out of total sales in 2016, these transactions accounted for just 6.4 percent and is now trending towards the 2.5 percent share considered as the normal market level.

Rare Finds at the Lower-Price Range

The diminished activity in the distressed home market, however, is exerting downward pressure on inventory, particularly on the lower-price ranges of single family homes. In December 2016, for instance, new listings and inventory in the low $100s were on the decline in contrast with increases on the other price ranges.

Since the start of this year, there were only a handful of newly listed distressed properties in the MLS of Sarasota homes for sale at the low-end segment. One of these prized finds is at Venice Gardens, a 1,232-square-foot pool home with two bedrooms and two baths priced at $144,900.

There’s another affordable new Venice Gardens listing which is not a short sale or foreclosure and offered in the low $200s. Put on the market just this February, it features three bedrooms and two baths within its floor area of nearly 1,500 square feet.

Affordable Condos for Sale

Multifamily units amongst Sarasota homes for sale in the distressed market are now coming in trickles as well. These, nonetheless, could provide added excitement amongst prospective buyers.

Las Palmas of Sarasota, would be one good destination for condos priced under the mid-$100s. There are two new listings at this price point in this neighborhood, both of which have a floor plan of about 1,000 square feet designed with one bedroom.

This community is conveniently located near the Nathan Benderson Park and the Mall at University Town Center, both girding for a 2017 uptempo in lifestyle activities that too could help spur the local market to outperform this year.