Foreign Investors Keep Competition Tight on Florida Properties


SARASOTA, FLORIDA, November 27th, 2013 – Institutional buying interest may be waning in Florida but competition among home buyers can be expected to remain, Sarasota Bay Real Estate reports. The full service realty firm says that the state’s residential properties continue to draw a growing number of prospective foreign buyers eying investments on rentals.

foreign Investors

As most foreign buyers are ready to pay in cash, locals who are funding planned purchases of Sarasota homes for sale through mortgage loans could be at a disadvantage, the realty firm adds. The domestic buyers thus would have a better chance at closing a mortgaged deal by working with a competent realtor who’s got an inside track of the local markets.

Shrinking home supply

Buyers will also have to contend with a sharply reduced home market inventory which in Sarasota has been hovering close to 10-year lows. In September, the available Sarasota single family homes for sale were estimated at a 4.8-month supply and 8.5 months for condo units. A year earlier, there was a 6.7-month inventory for single family homes and 11.1 months for condos.

The same situation prevails in Manatee where there was only a 3.9-month supply of available single family homes as of September, down 24.5% from the 5.2-month level a year earlier. The inventory decline was even sharper for townhouses and condos. For the month, condo units for sale in the area plunged 41% to a 4-month supply from the 6.7-month level in September 2012.

New crop of buyers coming in

The two counties and other Southwest Florida areas nearby are the traditional domain for Canadian buyers. Sarasota Bay Real Estate says, however, that these small investors, mostly coming from Ottawa, Toronto, or other cities in Canada’s Ontario province, can eventually be joined by those from Brazil and Argentina seeking upscale condo options.

The realty company which specializes on high-end residential property notes that several condominium projects are now in the works in Sarasota which specifically address the luxury market segment. These include The Jewel and Sarasota Gulfstream, both downtown projects, and a 16-unit luxury condo planned in Longboat Key.

More affordable berths at North Port

European home buyers have also been reported increasing their presence in the Southwest Florida area. Among this growing base of foreign homeowners are nationals from France, Switzerland, and Poland.

Unlike the South American luxury home buyers, these Europeans are more interested in affordable choices around the $100s range. For this reason, North Port is one of their favorite destinations. It offers many low-end residential property choices that can profitably be acquired and maintained as seasonal homes or vacation rentals.

In Port Charlotte subdivisions, the current alternatives listed in the MLS of Sarasota homes for sale include several new listings in the low $100s.These fresh options include three-bedroom homes built pre-2000 with floor areas ranging from 1,250 to 2,250 square feet.

The gated community of Talon Bay in North Port also has some competitively priced offerings built in more recent years. From the mid-$100s to the low $200s, the available Sarasota homes for sale in this neighborhood feature three bedrooms in floor areas of around 2,000 square feet.