Sarasota County Continues Record Real Estate Transaction Pace In October
October real estate transactions continued their record pace in Sarasota County, with 1,011 transactions, the fifth such time in eight months that levels have exceeded the one-thousand mark in the past eight months. The number of transactions bested the October 2013 totals by an impressive 23.3 percent, or, 191 more transactions over the same month last year, when 820 transactions were recorded. Single family home sales accounted for 723 transactions, while condos accounted for 288 transactions.
The figures also surpass the month prior by 77 transactions, or, 8.2 percent higher than September 2014, when 934 transactions took place. In the first ten months of the year, real estate sales are up by a total of 417 transactions over the same period in 2013, which saw 9,378 transactions, an improvement of more than 4 percent, climbing to 9,795 transactions.
“In the past few years, we haven’t observed a major drop off in sales in November and December. With the national economy picking up steam, and unemployment still dropping, I’m optimistic we’ll continue to see these strong numbers,” Sarasota Association of Realtors President Peter Crowley said.
In 2013, total transactions stood at the second-highest sales levels in the history of Sarasota County, falling short of 2004, when a whopping 11,482 transactions were recorded. Should the sales pace continue its strong stride, 2014 could surpass that historic level.
Median Prices Rise Again Across Sarasota County
The median sales price likewise continued its climb, outpacing September. In October, the median sales price increased to $195,000, an improvement from $189,000 in September and a larger leap over October 2013, when the median sales price reached $186,388 for single family residences. However, condos recorded a decrease in median sales price of 11.4 percent in October. In September of this year, the median condo price came in at $195,000, but in October, it fell to $175,000. Experts explain that fluctuations in median prices for condos reflects investor buying activity, a phenomenon which does not significantly have an impact on single family properties.
For the twelve-month period ending in October 2014, the median sales price, which includes a moderation of monthly swings, was $196,000. This represents an increase of 10 percent, bringing the median price up from the previous twelve month period ending October 2013, when the figure stood at $178,000 for single family homes. In the same twelve-month period ending in October of this year, the increase in median price rose 12 percent, up to $180,000, a rise from $162,900.
Pending Sales and Inventory Levels Stay Strong
Although pending sales in October 2014 were strong, coming in at 773, it was a decrease from September of this year, when pending transactions reached 938, or, 17.5 percent more than October. However, October 2014 was at near parity of October 2013, when pending sales totaled 820. These numbers are a sign that November 2014 is on track to hit approximately the same pending transactions. In November 2013, the number of pending transactions reached 818.
Inventory levels in October 2014 increased 3.4 percent from September 2014, rising from 3,666 to 3,791, a figure which falls short from October 2013, when inventory levels hit 4,032, a decrease of about 6 percent. The month's supply came-in a 4.4 for single family properties, precisely at parity with September's figure, but slightly down from October 2013, when levels hit 4.4. For condo units, the number increased from 3.8 to 3.9, but lower from October 2013, when inventory hit 4.3.
Distressed Properties Remain Nearly the Same
Distressed property sales in October 2014 , consisting of foreclosures and short sales, accounted for 24 percent of all real estate transactions, the same figure as September 2014, but down from last October, when distressed property sales accounted for 25.8 percent. Listings of distressed properties in October 2014 represented 10.1 percent of all available properties. For the year-to-date, the percentage of distressed property listings have accounted for 10 percent to 12 percent.