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Why This Summer Is The 2020 Real Estate Season In The Tampa Bay Area
With stay-at-home orders starting to gradually lift throughout parts of the country, including the Tampa Bay, FL area, data indicates home buyers are jumping back into the real estate market. After many families put their plans on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic, what we once called the busy spring real estate season is shifting into the summer. In 2020, summer is the new spring for real estate, especially in Pinellas County, Florida.
Joel Kan, Economist at The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) notes:
“Applications for home purchases continue to recover from April’s sizable drop and have now increased for 5 consecutive weeks…Government purchase applications, which include FHA, VA, and USDA loans, are now 5 percent higher than a year ago, which is an encouraging turnaround after the weakness seen over the past two months.”
Additionally, according to Google Trends, which scores search terms online, searches for real estate increased from 68 points the week of March 15th to 92 points last week. As we can see, more potential home buyers are looking for homes virtually. In the Pinellas County market, while there was a drop in home closings in April due to limited inventory, prices continued to increase as buyers competed with one another to find the perfect home.
What’s the Opportunity for Buyers?
Another reason home buyers in Florida are coming back to the market (even with forced unemployment and stay-at-home orders) is historically low mortgage rates. Sam Khater, Chief Economist at Freddie Mac indicates:
“For the 4th consecutive week, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage has been below 3.30 percent, giving potential buyers a good reason to continue shopping even amid the pandemic…As states reopen, we’re seeing purchase demand improve remarkably fast, now essentially flat relative to a year ago.”
With mortgage rates at such low levels and states like Florida gradually beginning to reopen, there’s more incentive than ever to buy a home this summer in the Tampa Bay, FL area.
What’s the Opportunity for Sellers?
Finding a home to buy, however, is still a challenge, as this spring sellers removed many listings from the Pinellas County housing market. Though more people are now putting their houses up for sale this month compared to last month, current inventory is still well below last year’s level. In April alone, new single family home listings in Pinellas County were down a whopping 32%!
According to last week’s Weekly Economic and Housing Market Update from Realtor.com:
“Weekly Housing Inventory showed continued tightening. New Listings declined 28% across the country compared with 1 year ago, as sellers grappled with uncertainty and hesitated bringing homes to the market. Total Listings dropped 20% YoY, a faster rate than in prior weeks, leaving very few homes available for sale."
If you’re thinking of selling your house in the Pinellas County or Greater Tampa Bay area this summer, now may be your best opportunity. With so few homes on the market for buyers to purchase, this season may be the time for your house to stand out from the crowd. We can help you list safely and effectively, keeping your family’s needs top of mind. Buyers are looking, and your house may be at the top of their list. Contact us if you'd like to talk about what selling your home may involve and what the latest prices are looking like in your neighborhood.
If you’re thinking of selling, many buyers may be eager to find a home just like yours in the Pinellas County housing market. Let’s connect today to make sure you can get your house in on the action this summer.
Andrea is the Managing Partner of The Sandy Hartmann Group. Andrea was born and raised in the Tampa Bay area and is a licensed Realtor with over 15 years of Marketing and Finance experience, holding ....
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