With the start of the New Year, home sales seem to be improving as the economy continues its slow, yet deliberate recovery
Recent home sales data seems to be pointing in the right direction for a change. After many months of slumping sales, and dismal news of foreclosure filings and falling prices it seems that we are possibly on our way to a stabilization of local housing markets in the greater Tampa Bay area. According to Tina Fingerman from Tropic Shores Realty, the recent months have brought some exciting changes in the local housing market in Trinity Florida and the surrounding areas. It appears that local sales are booming once again, with the recent home prices falling in some areas by more than 40%, home prices have become much more affordable that in the boom years of 2004-2006. Home buyers seem to be catching on that this is the perfect time to buy that new home. Given the fact that in many areas the price of a home is less than the actual replacement cost or the cost to build it, you can buy much more house today than you could a few years ago. What's amazing is that a home buyer can actually buy more home, for less money. This is evidenced by the recent sale of a home in the exclusive community of the Champions Club located in Trinity Florida in Pasco County. According to Realtor Tina Fingerman from Tropic Shores Realty, a recent sale of a McMansion formerly priced at close to 2 million dollars, was just completed and closed for 1.1 Million. Now to some that seems far removed from the type of home that most people would be looking for in these economic times, but to those who can afford it even these luxury homes can become a quick bargain. When you consider that the Luxury Golf Course Home in the Champions Club sold for almost half of what it would have fetched in 2006 it's easy to see that it was a bargain for the individual who purchased it at the reduced price. Tina states "Recently we have seen far more activity than we had seen last year". So how does the renewed interest in housing relate to actual sales? Well just ask Tina and she will tell you, "Home Sales are definitely up, we started the year off with around1.5 Million in sales, and that was all by the end of January." Not a bad start to the New Year when you consider that the market is still depressed and unemployment remains high in many hard hit areas.
Certainly the downturn in the economy has had a very negative effect on housing in the Pasco County area, but it seems that we may be finally heading out of the woods so to speak. The renewed interest in housing sparked by multiple factors such as lower prices, affordable interest rates, and a greater availability of credit than the previous 2 years have seen are all helping to contribute to a very busy New Year in the local Tampa Bay real estate market. Of course with more activity comes new challenges that many may not be prepared for. Take for example the foreclosure market which makes up much of the available inventory of homes for sale in the Pasco County Real Estate market. Many buyers have a tendency to believe that these foreclosed homes will sell for much lower the listed price, and what has been happening seems to be the exact opposite of that. Since the prices have already been adjusted to the current market conditions, and prices are as low as they have been in decades, these homes tend to get multiple offers from several buyers at a time. In many cases it’s not unusual to see these distressed homes sell for more than the asking price. In fact in some cases, the final price is considerably more. It seems that with the home prices being low, and rates being more affordable than ever before many buyers are willing to "step Up" and pay more than asking price to make sure they don’t loose the home.
If you need further evidence of home price reality and the value of purchasing a new home today, just ask Tina Fingerman and she will happily give you some examples. For instance, Tina says "Just last week I listed another home over in the Champions Club, it's a 5 bedroom, 4 bath, Executive home on the golf course of Fox Hollow. A few years back the home would have sold for well over $750,000.00, however today we are marketing the home for only $568,000." Tina adds that; "when one looks at the large difference in price from the height of the market in 2006 VS. What homes are selling for today it's easy to see the value in buying Real Estate now". If you need verification of these statements, look no further than with your own insurance company. Pick any property at random, and then call your favorite insurer to get a quote on home owners insurance. You'll quickly find out that the home owners policy will give you coverage that is in many cases far above the asking or selling price of the home. That's because according to insurance companies, the replacement cost of the actual dwelling does not change with the home prices decline. In fact the cost to build today is still close to what it was several years ago, materials are costing about the same, and although labor is down slightly it has not changed all that much. Considering that in the event of a total loss, you will have to have enough coverage to re-build the home at today's prices and standards one will quickly find that the replacement coverage of a new home owners insurance policy will almost always be higher than today's average sales price.
For some, there has been a period of waiting out the real estate market before they make the final decision to get out there and start looking for their dream home. That period of waiting seems to be disappearing more and more sine a recent spike in interest rates. Despite interest rates still lying low and at more affordable levels than has been seen in decades a recent bump in the rates of only .25% has moved a lot of people off the fence and back into the buying pool. That actually makes sense, since we all want to get the best deal on Real Estate we can possibly get. The fear of rising rates, and the apparent stabilization of housing markets as reported across the country has many convinced that if they don’t take action now, they may be missing the opportunity to get a great home at a low price, and the lowest rates we have seen in decades. "I guess you can say that we have the perfect storm of lower home prices, and affordable financing terms" Says Tina. For many that statement seems to be holding true as stronger home sales, and renewed interest in purchasing Real Estate has been reported by many agents across the region.
For More Information
Contact Tina Fingerman
Tropic Shores Realty