Market Trends

Posted by Debbie Baraona 

The following report is from the Realtor Association of Sarasota/Manatee as published on July 22  for closed June 2015 business.

Sales in June 2015 Continue Record Pace

Falling inventory didn’t hold back the real estate market in Sarasota and Manatee counties in June 2015, as sales continued to push into near-record territory and median sale prices rose in both counties.

Total June sales again topped 2,000 for both counties combined (2,058), pointing toward another potential record-breaking year in 2015. Sales in Sarasota County hit 1,183 in June, one more than in May and 12.9 percent higher than last June. Manatee County saw total sales of 875, above the May figure of 827 and about 24 percent above last June’s level.

Sales levels in both Sarasota and Manatee counties have been at historically high levels for several months, and median sale prices have also been trending upwards.

For Sarasota County, the June 2015 single family median sale prices were at $230,000, up 17.9 percent over last June, and at $253,700 in Manatee County, up 3.6 percent in over last June.

For condos, Sarasota County recorded a 7.7 percent price rise to $210,000, while Manatee
County was up 4.9 percent at $155,000.

“There hasn’t been a string of four consecutive months with sales this high in the history of this region,” noted Association President Stafford Starcher. “The closest we’ve seen to these numbers was in the spring of 2004 – over a decade ago.” “The existing inventory remains low in both counties, and that fundamental tends to push price appreciation in a desirable market like ours,” explained Starcher. “We are seeing inventory levels down by double digit percentages this June compared to last year at this time.”

The available inventory in Sarasota County stood at 3,516, down about 16 percent from last June, and at 2,687 in Manatee County, down about 6 percent from last June.  Reports of new pending sales, new contracts written, in the two-county area were up about 1 percent from last June, but did reflect a decline in condo contracts in Sarasota County over last June. Pending sales normally drop in the hot summer months as seasonal visitors head north.

The two-county area also saw the month’s supply of inventory remain well below the 6 month level that defines a market in equilibrium between buyers or sellers. The figures now stand at between 3.5 and 4.0 months in both counties for both single family and condos.

This means sellers remain firmly in command, based upon that market statistic, which is also reflected in the rising median sale prices and lower average days to closings. Median days on market were between 43 and 57 this June, compared to 55 to 66 days last June.

“The market numbers, along with word of mouth reports, indicate that this market continues to have strong legs as we go into the summer months,” said Starcher. “It’s looking very favorable for continuing high sales and median sales price rises, while the dropping inventory remains a concern as we go into the fall. Hopefully, we will see that figure also begin to rise, so our sales agents have more choice for their clients.”