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Sarasota-Manatee Real Estate Market Continues To Favor Sellers

Sarasota, Florida (May 2017) -- In the latest figures compiled by My Florida Regional MLS, the April 2017 residential real estate market looks quite healthy. During April of this year, an increase occurred in single family home sales, median sales prices, and inventory across Sarasota and Manatee, in comparison to April 2016.

Sarasota and Manatee Median Home Prices

Median home prices in Sarasota County rose by 9 percent for single family properties, rising to $272,500. While in Manatee County, single family median prices rose by 5.4 percent, up to $285,000. However, condos median prices in Sarasota Counties declined by 1.4 percent, falling to $215,000. But, condo median prices in Manatee County did rise by 2.1 percent, bringing it up to $170,500.

The number of new listings put into the local MLS across both Sarasota and Manatee counties decreased from March, likely marking the end of the season. "This year’s season started slow in January, but picked up steam in February and March, levelling out again in April," said Xena Vallone, the President 2017 Realtor Association of Sarasota and Manatee said.

Top five luxury homes closed in April

  • 1372 Harbor Dr, 4 bedrooms, 3 full baths, 3 half baths $6,000,000

  • 1703 Bayshore Rd, 6 bedrooms, 6 full baths, 1 half bath $4,350,000

  • 5137 Jungle Plum Rd, 4 bedrooms, 5 full baths, 1 half bath $4,150,000

  • 6855 Gulf of Mexico Dr, 4 bedrooms, 5 full baths, 1 half bath $4,100,000

  • 3935 Shell Rd, 4 bedrooms, 4 full baths, 1 half bath $3,500,000

  • Residential Real Estate Closed Sales

    Closed sales for the month of April in the two county market resulted in a mixed bag of figures. In Sarasota County, closed sales increased by 8.3 percent for single family residences. And, in Manatee County, closed sales inched up by 1.5 percent for single family properties. Closed sales for condos in both counties fell during the month of April. In Sarasota, closed condo sales fell by 0.3 percent, while in Manatee, closed condos sales decreased by 22 percent.

    Sarasota and Manatee Real Estate Inventory Levels

    The total inventory across both counties increased by 9.3 percent of active listings, compared to April 2016. However, inventory levels remain tight, particularly when it comes to the lower price ranges. In Sarasota, single family home inventory rose by 12.3 percent, as condos increased by 12 percent. In Manatee County, single family home listings rose by 3.6 percent, while condo listings rose by 9.7 percent.

    "Higher inventory levels typically increase the time it takes to sell a property. However, that is not the case for more affordable price points. Single family homes priced under $300,000 are going to contract more quickly than those priced higher, but we aren’t seeing the same thing in the condo market,” Vallone explained.

    The months' supply of inventory for both Sarasota and Manatee counties landed between 4.4 and 5.5 months, which shows an improvement in year-over-year numbers. This is a more balanced market between buyers and sellers, demonstrating a healthy real estate market. The months' supply of inventory reflects the amount of time it would take to sell every active residential listing without new properties coming onto the market. Currently, the supply of inventory slightly favors sellers across Sarasota and Manatee counties over buyers, but does not do so in all price ranges.

    Time to Contract in Sarasota and Manatee

    During April 2017, there was an increase in the time to contract, compared to the same month last year, across the two-county market. In Sarasota County, single family home contracts went from 35 days last year in April to 45 days on the market this year. For condos in Sarasota, days on the market also rose to 46 days, likewise up from 35 days in April 2016. In Manatee County, days on the market for single family properties rose to 46 days, up from 38 days in April 2016. The days on market for condos in Manatee during this April rose sharply to 50 days, compared to 33 days last year.

    Residential Home Sales Forecast

    According to the National Association of Realtor’s Midyear Forecast, many factors are preventing sale from rising. However, chief economist Lawrence Yun estimates existing home sales will rise 3.5 percent over the course of 2017. With more robust economic growth and still affordable interest rates, the housing market should do well as the year unfolds.

    "The housing market has exceeded expectations ever since the election, despite depressed inventory and higher mortgage rates. The combination of the stock market being at record highs, 16 million new jobs created since 2010, pent-up household formation and rising consumer confidence are giving more households the assurance and ability to purchase a home," Yun explains.