At the outset of COVID-19, I posited that housing will lead the recovery. Designated by the Governor as an “essential service”, as Realtors we continued to service the needs of buyers, many of whom sold their homes in our feeder markets, anxious to move to our area and begin their retirement. Many were renting for the season and are now ready to purchase a home and move here permanently. In March and April, amidst initial fear and uncertainty, many buyers and sellers understandably moved to the sidelines. In April new listings and purchase contracts (“pended sales”) dropped 42% from the same month last year. Nevertheless, within 6 weeks things began to change. In the second half of April, while new listings continued to lag due to health and safety concerns, internet use, page views, social channels, showings (virtual and live) and pended sales (homes under contract) began to rise.
Pended sales are forward looking, a leading indicator of home sales over the next 2 months. In May 2020, more single family, condos and villas went under contract in Sarasota County than the same time last year, May 2019. There were 1,215 pended sales, 4.9% higher than last year, 73.5% higher than the prior month, April 2020. Buyers essentially stalled for the first month and a half, March to mid-April, at the outset of the corona era. But they’re buying now. In Sarasota County, the housing market is in a V-shaped recovery.
There is a lack of inventory, new listings are down 16.7% from May 2019, but the direction is heading north. There were 32% more homes listed last month than April 2020. That trend will continue, as next month we will see more sellers list their homes for sale. It will be a combination due to the easing and adjustment to health and safety concerns, coupled with the life cycle of homeowners needing to sell and buyers anxious to buy.
An increase in new listings will meet the demand. It will have a deminimus effect upon the supply of homes. Home inventory will remain low, currently 2.9 months based on pended sales, 4.7 months based on closed sales. Low supply has been a constant. It was a constant before corona. It has been a constant during corona. It will remain a constant after corona.
In May the median sold price was $282,000, down 1.1% from May 2019. The average sold price was $373,000, down 6% from last year. Month to month variations aside, low supply and high demand will continue to support stable sold prices, modulating within an approximate 4% spread, up or down. And, new construction will be a reoccurring source of competition for sellers, an opportunity for buyers.
Home Sales Sarasota County
Single Family, Condo, Villa
|Current vs. Previous Month||Current vs. Same Month 1 Yr Ago|
|May 2020||April 2020||% Change||May 2020||May 2019||% Change|
|For Sale||3490||3838||-8.8%||For Sale||3490||4492||-22.3%|
|New Listing||1020||773||32%||New Listing||1020||1224||-16.7%|
|Average Sq. Ft. Sold Price||$205||$225||-8.9%||Average Sq. Ft. Sold Price||$205||$222||-7.7%|
|Avg Days on Market||67||69||-2.9%||Avg Days on Market||67||88||-23.9%|
|Sold vs. Original List Price %||92%||92%||0%||Sold vs. Original List Price %||92%||91%||1.1%|
|Median Sold Price||$282,000||$285,000||-1.1%||Median Sold Price||$282,000||$285,000||-1.1%|
|Average For Sale Price||$729,000||$697,000||4.6%||Average For Sale Price||$729,000||$688,000||6%|
|Average Sold Price||$373,000||$404,000||-7.7%||Average Sold Price||$373,000||$397,000||-6%|
|Mo Inventory Closed Sales||4.7 mo.||4.3 mo.||9.3%||Mo Inventory Pended Sales||4.7 mo.||3.3 mo.||42.4%|
|Mo Inventory Pended Sales||2.9 mo.||5.5 mo.||-47.7%||Mo Inventory Pended Sales||2.9 mo.||3.9 mo.||-25.8%|