The Southwest Florida economy was strong for the most part in the month of March, as it was statewide, according to recent reports and information released by Florida REALTORS®, and the Southwest Florida Regional Economic Indicators Report prepared by Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU). Reports indicate the residential real estate market in Florida had a rise in the number of sales, higher median prices and an increase in pending sales for the month of March.
Statewide sales of single-family homes totaled 25,921 for March 2017, an increase of 9.3 percent from the totals in March 2016. Statewide sales of townhome-condo properties totaled 11,193 for March, an increase of 11.4 percent from March 2016. “March’s strong sales likely were influenced by buyers ready to take action before interest rates could move higher,” says 2017 Florida REALTORS® President Maria Wells. “Higher demand, coupled with a shortage of available homes for sale, continues to put pressure on prices – so buyers are eager to make an offer when they find the right property. That means it’s a good time for sellers to list their homes, since they continue to receive a higher sales price as inventory remains scarce,” adds Wells. “In March, sellers of existing single-family homes received 96.1 percent (median percentage) of their original listing price, while those selling townhouse-condo properties received 94.7 percent – an indication that the listed price is extremely close to market value.”
Total REALTOR® sales of single-family homes in the Southwest Florida counties of Lee, Collier and Charlotte, increased to 2,198 in March 2017, the highest total since April 2015. This increase represented an increase of 18 percent over the totals for March 2016, and a 52 percent increase over total sales of single-family homes for February 2017.
The statewide median sales price for existing single-family homes for March 2017 was $231,900, an increase of 10.4 percent from the prior year. The statewide median price for townhouse-condo properties in the month of March was $171,000, an increase of 9.4 percent year-over-year.
Median prices in the three Southwest Florida counties of Lee, Collier, and Charlotte, increased as well. Lee County reported the sale of 1,317 units (an 18 percent increase over March 2016) and a median price increase of $30,000, bringing the counties median sales price for single-family homes to $255,000. Collier County reported the sale of 435 single-family homes in March 2017, compared to 391 in March 2016, and a median sales price increase of $22,000 to $422,000. Charlotte County reported the sale of 446 single-family homes for March 2017, an increase of 87 units (24 percent) from March 2016, and a median sales price increase of $15,025 to $210,000 for March 2017 in comparison to March 2016.