Make us your home page

Tampa Bay home sales, median prices increase in July

Tampa Bay home sales and prices continued to climb last month, revealing hints of a housing recovery gaining steam statewide.

Local home sales jumped 12 percent last month over July 2011, Florida Realtors said Wednesday. Tampa Bay's median sales price grew 8 percent to $130,000.

Home sales in Florida and nationwide rose over the same time period about 10 percent, National Association of Realtors data show.

Conventional sales — not foreclosures or short sales — led the way locally with a 10 percent jump in price to $155,000 over the last year. Prices for foreclosure sales edged up 6 percent, while short-sale prices remained flat.

Median prices are still far below their $240,000 peak in June 2006. But if prices for conventional sales continue to rise, homeowners could feel more confident in returning to the market to buy and sell.

Record-low mortgage interest rates are helping to spur demand, but low housing inventories and challenges in finding lending are making it tough for some to buy.

Statewide pending sales — homes under contract but not yet closed — grew since the previous year by more than 40 percent.

That means prospective buyers are committing to homes but getting wrapped up by delays, said Florida Realtors chief economist John Tuccillo, due to tough lending standards tightened since the crash.

"It's definitely a positive indicator for the future of the market," Tuccillo said. "But it goes back to the notion that it's difficult to get financing."

Also slowing the market is the low number of homes for sale, which has continued to drop as homeowners hesitate to sell or banks delay in listing repossessed homes.

Tampa Bay's housing inventory slid last month to a five-month supply, a 33 percent drop since July 2012. Florida's supply also sunk to about five months, a 41 percent drop.

The strapped inventory is squeezing sales across the country. Home sales nationwide, National Association of Realtors chief economist Lawrence Yun predicted, could have risen to a rate of more than 5 million a year if more homes were on the market and loans were easier to secure.

The national median home price — $187,300, or 9 percent higher than a year prior — has risen five months in a row, a feat last seen in early 2006.

But that hint of recovery could also be caused by tight inventories and constrained sales of lower-priced homes, which drag down the median price.

One third of the homes bought in July nationwide were on the market less than a month. Short sales and foreclosures accounted for a quarter of July's nationwide sales, down from the previous year by 29 percent.

Times staff writer Mark Puente contributed to this report. Contact Drew Harwell at (727) 893-8252 or [email protected]

Home sales closed in July
LocationJuly 2012July 2011Change
Tampa Bay2,8892,58012 percent
Florida17,42015,8639.8 percent
Median sales price in July
LocationJuly 2012July 2011Change
Tampa Bay$130,000$120,0008.3 percent
Florida$148,000$137,3007.8 percent

Tampa Bay home sales, median prices increase in July 08/22/12 [Last modified: Thursday, August 23, 2012 8:54am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Carrollwood fitness center employs scientific protocol to help clients


    In 2005, Al Roach and Virginia Phillips, husband and wife, opened 20 Minutes to Fitness in Lakewood Ranch, and last month they opened the doors to their new location in Carrollwood.

    Preston Fisher, a personal fitness coach at 20 Minutes To Fitness, stands with an iPad while general manager/owner Angela Begin conducts an equipment demonstration. The iPad is used to track each client's information and progress. I also included one shot of just the equipment. The center recently opened in Carrollwood. Photo by Danielle Hauser.
  2. Olive Tree branches out to Wesley Chapel


    WESLEY CHAPEL — When it came time to open a second location of The Olive Tree, owners John and Donna Woelfel, decided that Wesley Chapel was the perfect place.

    The Olive Tree expands its offerings of "ultra premium?€ extra virgin olive oils (EVOO) to a second location in Wesley Chapel. Photo by Danielle Hauser.
  3. Massachusetts firm buys Tampa's Element apartment tower

    Real Estate

    TAMPA — Downtown Tampa's Element apartment tower sold this week to a Massachusetts-based real estate investment company that plans to upgrade the skyscraper's amenities and operate it long-term as a rental community.

    The Element apartment high-rise at 808 N Franklin St. in downtown Tampa has been sold to a Northland Investment Corp., a Massachusetts-based real estate investment company. JIM DAMASKE  |  Times
  4. New York town approves Legoland proposal


    GOSHEN, N.Y. — New York is one step closer to a Lego dreamland. Goshen, a small town about fifty miles northwest of the Big Apple, has approved the site plan for a $500 million Legoland amusement park.

    A small New York town, Goshen approved the site plan for a $500 million Legoland amusement park. Legoland Florida is in Winter Haven. [Times file  photo]
  5. Jordan Park to get $20 million makeover and new senior housing

    Real Estate


    Times Staff Writer

    ST. PETERSBURG —The St. Petersburg Housing Authority, which bought back the troubled Jordan Park public housing complex this year, plans to spend about $20 million to improve the 237-unit property and construct a new three-story building for …

    Jordan Park, the historic public housing complex, is back in the hands of the St. Petersburg Housing Authority. The agency is working to improve the 237-unit complex. But the latest plan to build a new three-story building for seniors will mean 31 families have to find new homes. [LARA CERRI   |   Tampa Bay Times]