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Longboat Key Wednesday, Mar. 23, 2022 4 months ago

Tight real estate market in Sarasota, Bradenton gets tighter

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Closed sales lower than February 2021.
by: Eric Garwood Managing Editor

Newly listed properties are barely making it through a workweek on the market before a contract is signed, a condition Realtors, clients and buyers have been experiencing for months.

In the latest batch of residential real estate data released by the Realtor Association of Sarasota and Manatee, the key figures driving the local market (and that of Florida, generally) are coming into sharp focus: more buyers than properties to buy.

“The February 2022 housing statistics indicate just how low inventory is and its impact on our market. There simply aren’t enough homes to sell, leaving us with fewer closed sales than the previous year,” said 2022 RASM President Tony Veldkamp. “The recent uptick in mortgage rates is beginning to impact affordability for many, especially for first-time home buyers looking to buy as a reaction to rising rent prices. Meanwhile, there is still a large demand coming from out-of-state transplants who are looking to buy in our area of Florida. This imbalance of supply and demand contributes to the rapidly increasing prices we continue to see each month.”

Since the COVID-19 pandemic took hold in 2020, Sarasota-Bradenton real estate numbers have reflected a shift from the typical commute-to-work lifestyle to one allowing for relocating and working remotely.

In both Manatee and Sarasota counties, the median time to contract for homes and condos was six days, less than half the time such a transaction took in February 2021. New listings in Sarasota were down in February by 7%  and 8% in Manatee.

Prices have responded to that basic economic principal of supply and demand too. In February 2022, the median price for a single family home was up 23.9% to $458,450.

At the end of February, there were 1,287 listings combined in both counties, down by 4.5% from January 2022 and down by 42.6% from February 2021.

The inventory of single-family homes decreased year-over-year by 35.2% in Sarasota County and by 27% in Manatee County. As for condos, Sarasota is down by 63.2% from last year and Manatee decreased by 48.8%.

The overall closed sales combined in the two counties decreased by 17% from February 2021, with a total of 1,811 sales in February 2022. Compared to last month, February sales are up by 2.6% from January 2022.

In the single-family home market, closed sales in Manatee County increased year-over-year by 4.3% to 559 sales and decreased in Sarasota County by 16.8% to 691 sales. Closed sales for condos decreased in both counties; down by 16.8% to 247 sales in Manatee and down by 39.4% to 314 sales in Sarasota,

The benchmark mortgage rate for a 30-year loan last week was 4.4%, up from 4.14% the previous week.

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