Resale Homes Faceoff with New Construction


SARASOTA, FLORIDA, February 10th, 2016 – More than ever, it is essential for prospective sellers of existing or pre-owned homes in Sarasota and Manatee to ensure that their properties for resale are well primed-up and priced well. New home construction, industry indicators show, is expected to hit higher levels in 2016 and thereby pose as strong, competitive options for resale homes in the two counties.

The recent growth of new home construction shall continue locally this year, primed up mainly by the migration-induced population growth in Manatee and Sarasota, according to Orlando-based economist and consultant Henry Fishkind. In a recent presentation on the region’s economic prospects, Fishkind noted that in 2015, some 8,000 new residents moved to Manatee while 6,000 relocated to Sarasota, both an influx which was better than earlier forecasts.

Homebuilding Highs on the Horizon

Resale Homes Faceoff with New Construction

Spurred by this strong domestic migration, housing starts for Manatee County alone have returned to the peak level of the last residential property market boom, an exceptional growth within Florida, the economist said.

The most recent industry figures affirm Fishkind’s observation on the rising inventory of newly built homes for sale in Manatee and Sarasota, which present tempting alternatives to existing residences on the resale market. Data compiled through August 2015 by the counties’ building regulatory agencies indicated that new home construction in the area is tracking towards a three-year high.

Construction permits issued in the two-county region during the first eight months of 2015 were higher compared to the prior two years, records from the counties’ building departments showed. In Manatee, home building permits issued in the 2015 period rose year over year by 7 percent to 1,557, while 814 were granted in Sarasota for a gain of 4.6 percent.

Economy and Population Diversifying

Job growth which correlates with a fresh infusion of labor as a result of population influx is another primer to housing starts moving forward this year. In his presentation, Fishkind observed that people moving to Manatee also include workforce-age and not just retirees. This fresh labor resource, he said, augurs well in attracting new business locators in the region.

Notably, in an effort to promote job creation and diversify the local economy largely reliant on tourism and healthcare, the Bradenton Area Economic Development Corporation has recently identified six industries to focus on. These target areas include information technology, corporate operations, life sciences, advanced manufacturing, distribution and logistics, and sports performance.

Spotlight on Octex

Tailwinds for job creation and its favorable ripple effects on Manatee-Sarasota homes for sale can likewise be expected from the $1 billion in business tax cuts that Florida Gov. Rick Scott is pushing for the state’s 2016 legislative session. Gov. Scott pitched on his proposed new tax incentives in a January visit to Octex, a Sarasota-based manufacturer of plastic injection molder which has significantly increased its workforce last year as a result of state tax cuts. An Octex executive said the company plans hiring more engineers next year, but how many hires will depend on how much it can save from the reductions.

Coincidentally, Octex is located just a street east of the Tatum Ridge community where resale homes will soon face off with new construction at the Lakewood Ranch Waterside set to begin infrastructure works in early 2016. Twelve neighborhoods are on the drawing boards for this community for a total of over 5,000 units. Current sales listings of pre-owned homes at the gated Legends at Tatum Ridge have floor plans ranging from 1,500 up to nearly 3,000 square feet and offered amongst Sarasota homes for sale at between the high $200s and the $400s.