Florida Real Estate Starts to Level Off but Condo Demands Remain Strong

After a good summer and early fall season, Florida’s real estate market is showing signs of returning to the norm. Still, October was the 47th consecutive month that statewide median sales prices increased year-over-year for both single-family homes and townhouse-condos, according to a press release from Florida Realtors on PRNewswire.com.

“The state’s housing market continues to benefit from more people moving to Florida, the increased job growth and stronger economy,” said 2015 Florida Realtors President Andrew Barbar, a broker with Keller Williams Realty Services in Boca Raton. “Sellers received a higher percentage of their original list price, with single-family homes getting on average 94.3 percent and townhome-condos getting 93.3 percent. It also took less time for homes to sell in October.”

About 45 million people move each year on average. Florida has always been a popular location to migrate to, especially for older age groups from the cold Northeast. It appears this remains, but the strong economy Barbar referenced is certainly influencing some of the new home sales as the average price of units sold skyrocketed in some places.

Typically a “snowbird,” as they’re known, is retired and not looking for an exorbitant new home, but rather an affordable second home, oftentimes to rent for half the year.

In Lee County for example, home and condo sales saw huge increases in the sale of properties over $1 million. Homes sold in this category rose by 63.6% and 200% for condos, according to information pulled from the report by news-press.com.

Even though closed-condo sales were slightly down in October compared to 2014 (0.9%), most industry experts are crediting that to the lack of overall supply as they’ve seen the demand stay relatively consistent. Total October listings for single-family condos were down 20.5% from the same time last year.

“The Florida real estate market is catching its breath after a frantic summer and early fall,” said Florida Realtors Chief Economist Dr. John Tuccillo. “One month’s numbers do not make a trend, but the October numbers are signaling a return toward a more balanced market.”

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