Great news! The Sarasota real estate market saw sales leap by 22 percent in January 2013, compared to January 2012. It shows that the 2012 real estate market surge has continued into the new season.
There were a total of 626 properties from the MLS that sold in January. It breaks down to 466 single family homes and 160 condominiums. That compared to 365 single family homes and 148 condos sold in January 2012. The January sales represented a drop off from the December 2012 total of 828 sales. A similar decrease was seen last year from December to January. In 2012, sales increased markedly in February, March and April, climbing to 886 closed transactions in April before dropping off slightly in the summer months.
Pending sales, which predict future closings, were at 1,047 in January – the highest level in nine months, and well above the pending sales reported in January 2012 (963). This statistic, which represents properties that went under contract during the month, indicates the February sales could also be at a healthy level.
Inventory level in the Sarasota housing market
The available inventory remained near the lowest level in a decade, but rose somewhat in January 2013 to 3,846 from the December 2012 total of 3,657. The figure was still 1,000 fewer properties than in January 2012.
The median sale prices for single family homes dropped slightly in January to $183,800 from the December 2012 figure of $189,500. But the figure was 14 percent higher than last January’s median of $162,000. Condo median sale prices dropped markedly in January 2013 to $130,000 from the December 2012 figure of $182,500, and were also much lower than last January ($180,000). A closer examination of the condo category showed many sales in the sub-$100,000 price range, which pulled down the overall statistic. In 2012, the full year median prices were 13 percent higher than in 2011.
The January 2013 months of inventory were 5.4 months for single family and 8.4 months of inventory for condos, somewhat higher than the December 2012 figures of 3.9 months and 5.4 months, respectively. The increase can be attributed to two factors – a large increase in new listings on the market (988 compared to only 596 in December); and the decrease in sales, both of which resulted in a larger inventory and smaller percentage of closed sales.
Months of inventory represents the time it would take to deplete the current inventory at the current sales rate. Last January, there were 8.3 months of inventory for single family homes and 11.3 months of inventory for condos. At the worst point of our market in November 2008, there were 24 months of inventory for single family homes and 41.7 months for condos.
Sarasota Short Sales and Sarasota Foreclosures
Currently, only 470 properties listed for sale in the MLS are short sales or foreclosures, almost identical to last month’s figure. This represents about 12.2 percent of available properties, down from last month’s figure of 12.9 percent and a big drop from January 2012 when the figure represented 17 percent of the market.
Sales of distressed properties, however, represented 35.4 percent of the overall market in January 2013, up slightly from the December 2012 figure of 32 percent, but still significantly below the 51 percent figure experienced in the fourth quarter of 2010.
Sarasota market Summary
In total, January 2013 statistics reflected a strong Sarasota real estate sales market, and pending sales numbers that seem to indicate a positive spring season to come. Read the complete press release in PDF format, plus several pages of statistical charts.