Single-family listings, home prices increase in Florida

by Joe Ward

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An increase in new single-family home listings did not correlate to lower home prices in Florida, according to Florida Realtors.

Inventory crept up in the first quarter of 2018, when 96,281 homes were listed, a 1 percent increase over the same time last year. Increases in inventory levels are generally regarded as good news for an industry that has faced historically low inventory, but not all increases are the same.

Whereas the state is in dire need of available starter homes, most of the increases in inventory have come in the more expensive markets.

“At the more affordable end of the pricing spectrum, Florida’s strong employment growth and the long-awaited emergence of the millennial buyer have increasingly driven demand – but there also remains a sizable contingent of investors in this segment who are looking to capitalize on high rents,” Florida Realtors Chief Economist Dr. Brad O’Connor said in a statement. “It’s the lack of both existing and new inventory in these price ranges that is really limiting this segment’s potential and keeping sales growth down.”

The slight bump in inventory did not translate to a decrease in home prices in the first quarter, however. The statewide median sales price for a single-family home was $248,000, up nearly 10 percent compared to quarter one of 2017.

Closed sales were nearly identical in the two quarters: 60,204 homes were sold in the first three months of 2018 compared to 60,733 in the first three months of 2017.

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