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Homes sales and prices jump in parts of Tampa Bay

A ‘crazy’ tight supply of homes will continue to drive up prices
The back of the home as seen from the beach [GOOGLE MAPS]
Published Aug. 21
Updated Aug. 21

Single-family home sales and prices jumped in most parts of the Tampa Bay area in July as the supply of available homes shrank to its lowest level in at least a year.

Hernando had the most impressive sales gain — up more than 17 percent year over year — while Pasco showed the biggest price increase, climbing 10.2 percent.

Pasco "is one of those growth markets that will continue to be strong,’’ Charles Richardson, regional senior vice president of Coldwell Banker Real Estate, said Wednesday. "It’s got a less expensive base and a lot of brand new product coming out of the ground. The growth is outpacing the road system but it’s a market that’s got a lot of people commuting to St. Petersburg and Tampa.''

Despite national talk of a recession, the Tampa Bay market should continue to flourish as thousands of people and many new companies move into the area because of low taxes and relative affordability, Richardson said. Coldwell Banker alone has handled almost 800 corporate relocations this year in the bay area.

Shrinking inventories, however, will continue to drive up prices. Pinellas, Pasco and Hillsborough each had just a 2.6 months supply of homes in July compared to nearly 3 months a year ago. (Although that was low too by historical standards.)

"It’s crazy,'' Richardson said. "That’s telling us is that it’s still a market that’s got a lot of demand and very little supply and that inventory priced well tends to move quickly.''

Here’s how Tampa Bay counties fared in July compared to a year ago, according to figures released Wednesday by Florida Realtors:

Pasco — sales up 14.8 percent, prices up 10.2 percent to a median of $238,000.

Pinellas: — sales up 8.6 percent, prices up 8.7 percent to a median of $271,750

Hillsborough — sales up 4.3 percent, prices up 1 percent to a median of $258,000.

Hernando — sales up 17.5 percent, prices up 8.8 percent to a median of $184,850

RELATED STORY: Five years ago, you could get a very nice house for under $185,000 in Hillsborough and Pinellas. Now? Good luck

Pinellas chalked up one of the biggest home sales ever in the Tampa Bay area — a four-bedroom, six-bath house on the Gulf of Mexico in Clearwater. At $9.25 million, it was exceeded by only three other homes in Pinellas and one in Hillsborough.

In Hillsborough in July, the top price paid was $3.7 million for a 7,000-square-foot house on Davis Islands. The five-bedroom, six-bath house is on a canal but has an open bay view.

Pasco’s most expensive property of the month was a custom lakefront Arthur Rutenburg home in Land O’ Lakes that sold for $1.1 million. And in Hernando, a buyer paid $938,500 for a nearly 5,000-square-foot house, shooting range and six-stall stable on 26 acres in Brooksville.

Statewide, sales of single family homes jumped 10.4 percent as prices climbed 5.1 percent to a median of $268,000.

Nationwide, sales of all existing homes — houses, condos and townhomes — rose 2.5 percent while the median price increased 4.3 percent to $280,000.


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