Median home prices in Sarasota hit a record level in October, breaking a mark set earlier this year and helping elevate the two-county region into elite company statewide.
Median single-family home prices in October reached above $400,000 in just three metropolitan areas in Florida – Naples-Marco Island ($650,000); Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach ($494,000) and Bradenton-Sarasota-North Port ($415,389). In terms of condominium sales in October, the median price in Sarasota-Manatee ($302,900) was the state’s fifth highest.
Continuing to drive ever-higher prices are historically low inventories of properties for sale and speedy sales once they reach the market.
In Sarasota County, the median price for a single-family home rose to $410,000, while time to contract fell more than 66% to seven days. In Manatee, the October median price rose to $425,000 while the time to contract fell to six days.
Across the two-county area, closed sales were down, a reflection of the smaller-than-normal inventory. Agents in Sarasota and Manatee counties represented a total of 2,037 sales in October, a 15.5% decrease from October 2020.
Longboat home on market for $10.88 million
Sarasota real estate sales
Longboat Key real estate sales
Lakewood Ranch area real estate sales
According to the Realtor Association of Sarasota and Manatee, single-family home sales in Sarasota County decreased by 15.2% to 788 sales, while Manatee County single-family sales decreased by 12.3% to 672 sales. Condo closed sales decreased by 24.6 percent to 319 sales in Sarasota, and decreased by 11.6% to 258 sales in Manatee.
Expect little change in the new year, said Alex Krumm, president of the Realtor Association of Sarasota and Manatee in a prepared statement.
“Buyers should be prepared to be patient,’’ he said. “Competition will be fierce for the foreseeable future, and there isn't a market correction around the corner. Buyers who have already taken advantage of this market are being rewarded handsomely, and we expect those rewards will keep on coming through the first part of the year.”
Florida as a whole is experiencing a similar market.
Across Florida in October, median prices were up 17.7% to $358,950, according to Florida Realtors, which collects data from local real estate organizations. The median price for condos or townhomes was $260,000, up 17.6%.
"In 2020, Florida's housing market had perhaps the best second half of any year in recent memory," said Erica Plemmons, Florida Realtors economist and director of housing statistics. "Part of this was due to the shifting spring buying season: The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic pushed a lot of sales that would have occurred in spring, back into the late summer and fall. But other factors were at play as well, including record-low mortgage rates, changes in consumers' housing preferences, and the demand pressure from continued movement of millennials into their prime home-buying years."
The average interest rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage averages 3.07% in October statewide, up from 2.83% a year ago.