As a realtor, one of  the most common questions heard is “what is the housing market like”. There is never an easy answer, but as we roll into 2018, I wanted to try and attack that question.  Here in the Tampa Bay area, the housing market is pretty good, particularly if you are looking to sell! Tampa Bay ranks 29th in the nation’s top 100 markets for 2018. Coming in behind Lakeland, Miami, Orlando, Daytona Beach and Sarasota, but finishing ahead of Cape Coral and Fort Myers.



According to Darne Blomquist, senior vice president at ATTOM, a real estate information firm: “if you’re selling, you’re taking advantage of a red-hot housing market with low supply, high demand and fast appreciating home prices in many areas” The average seller is raking in $54,000 above what they originally paid for their home. (ATTOM Data Solutions report) They are also netting an average 29.7% profit, which is the highest profit average since 2007.


There is a reluctance among sellers, it seems, to list their homes. The most likely reason for this reticence is knowing that their home is probably going to sell quickly and upgrading to a larger home may be too costly and downsizing means delving into a very competitive market. According to the Florida Realtors annual statistics report, the average home goes under contract in anywhere from 28-44 days (depending on the month, as we have “high time” {March through June} and is sold within 63-84 days. Not a tremendous amount of time to find a new place and move!


Finally, sellers are staying put a lot longer. Possibly, in part due to the housing crisis a decade ago. The resulting fact is that homeowners are, on average staying in their homes for 8.18 years. Just 1 year ago the average was 7.78 years. The longer an owner stays in one place, the tighter our housing inventory become.



“If you’re a buyer in this housing market, it’s a full-contact sport,” says Blomquist. “The buyers with the most cash often win.” Tampa Bay area (Pinellas county) has only about 2.5 months worth of inventory. With a surplus of buyers searching for a home, those houses are at a premium.


The typical route of offering a seller a contract, which contains the buyer utilizing a lender, has about a 50% chance of being beat out by a comparable cash offer. In December of 2017, there were 754 closed sales in Pinellas County. Of those 754 sales, 398 were paid in cash! This preponderance of cash deals is also indicative of the extent to which investors are participating in the market. (Investors are much more likely to have the funds to purchase a home in cash. There are exceptions of course, so take this statistic with a grain of salt.)


Despite these pinched housing circumstances, US homeownership rate rose to 64.2 % in the 4th quarter of 2017. (According to the U.S. Census Bureau). This is the first increase in that statistic in 13 years! The reason is the number of young buyers purchasing their first home. There is still significant movement in our markets!


Sale Price

The other major component of our market is the sale price. (There is a link below where you can view all of the Pinellas statistics in depth, if you are a numbers nerd like me!)  The median sale price in December of 2017 was $239,900. That is a 7.9% increase over the same month the previous year. Sellers are definitely getting fair prices it would seem. Also, the median percent of original list price received in December 2017 was 96%. That means that as a median value homes received 96% of their listed price. This statistic is a good indicator of market recover. As a buyer realizes that the market may be moving away from them, and that they will need to match or better the selling price, this statistic rises. (As it has been doing).


So how is the market doing? Now you know! My suggestion is to find out what your home is worth if you are thinking of selling. It certainly seems to be an ideal time to sell as we are in what is called a “sellers market”. If you are in the market to purchase, you will need to act decisively and come in with your best offer. Make sure you have a great realtor to walk you through either side of this and best of luck!


Statistics for Pinellas Real Estateblack and white home