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Comparison of 2017 Tax Values in Downtown Sarasota Condominiums

An Overview of the Florida Property Taxes

About this time every year, the County Property Appraisers in Florida wrap up their property valuations for the year. In Florida, the valuation date is always the first day of the calendar year. So, in this most recent valuation, the valuation date is January 1, 2017.  Many of my clients often ask if the tax value of a piece of property represents anything close to fair value. The answer is it probably never does and really shouldn’t. Here’s why:

  1. First, there are three values the Property Appraisers calculate each year – Just Value, Assessed Value, and Taxable Value. Just Value is supposed to represent market value. The Assessed Value reflects the cumulative effect of all the “Florida Save Our Homes” benefits that have accrued to the homeowner. The Assessed Value less any exemptions (most commonly, the homestead exemption) becomes Taxable Value. Taxable Value multiplied times your millage rate plus any non-ad valorem taxes becomes your property tax. The only value that ever has any relation to the real market value is Just Value. You cannot impute Just Value from the amount of the property tax; or solely from the amount of the property tax.
  2. Second, as should be obvious from the opening paragraph, the values are for January 1 of the tax year but aren’t published until near the end of that same year. Even though Just Value is an estimate of market value, Just Value is static- it is only updated once per year. Because the valuations are almost a year old by the time they are released, Just Values are, on average, 18 months old. In a market that is moving, Just Values are too stale to have much meaning.

The fact that Just Value is rarely equal to the market value of the property on any day doesn’t mean the valuation was wrong or inaccurate on the valuation date. I don’t know that Just Value is any worse of an estimate of value than the values you see on Zillow or anywhere else where properties values are determined through mass appraisal techniques. The values are just stale.  If you assume the valuations are accurate as of each January 1, then the difference between the Just Value across years must be a fair representation of appreciation.

The data for the information below comes are from Sarasota County property tax records as compiled by Corelogic/Realist. The values are the Just Values for the periods and properties indicated.

2017 Downtown Sarasota Property Tax Just Values by Condominium

2017 Downtown Sarasota Property Tax Just Values by Condominium –Click to open pdf

2017 Property Tax Highlights for Downtown Sarasota Condominiums

  • The group of 41 buildings in the report amounts to $1.7 billion in Just Value, which represents a 6% increase over the 2016 valuation. The 2016 figures were up 8% over 2015.
  • The building with the highest per unit value is Grand Riviera on Golden Gate Pointe. The average residence is valued at $2.5M.
  • The Tower Residences is right behind at $2.4M per residence. With 80 residences in the building, The Tower Residences is the highest valued building downtown at almost $194M. No other building is even close. The 204 residences in Alinari give it second place at about $87M.
  • Last year, the most appreciated area was Golden Gate Point, where over half the buildings experienced double digit increases in their appreciation rate. The average increase was 13%. This year, Golden Gate came in at healthy 9%, but that was only good enough for second place. On Sunset Drive, directly across Gulfstream from Golden Gate Point, the value of the average residence increased 10%.
  • Majestic Bay is the only building that has experienced a double digit increase in the past 3 years. Owners here have seen their Just Value increase from $1,040k to $1,711k, or about 64%, since the 2014 valuation.
  • A shout out to the residents in One Watergate- the work you did on your building looks great. I can see I wasn’t the only one that felt this way. The Property Appraiser also took note and “rewarded” you with a 9% increase in Just Value (about 4 times the average along Gulfstream) or about $40k per residence.
  • The area I have labeled central downtown, which is comprised 100% of buildings constructed during the previous generation of construction, is lagging the most. Over the past 3 years, the JV has increased only 13% cumulatively.
  • In 2014, there were 325 residences in these 41 buildings valued at more than $1M (13.7% of all residences in the 41 buildings). By the start of 2017, 428 units were valued over 1M or 18% of the total. The increase in $2M residences was more pronounced – more than doubling from 51 (2.2% of total) in 2014 to 121 (5.1%) in 2017.
  • If you are on the fence between buying a $500,000 condo and a $1,000,000 one, buy the more expensive one. Residences with Just Values over $1 million in 2014 have increased in value by 28% as of the 2017 valuation. Those under $1 million in 2014 have increased only 22% as of 2017.

Pending Report for Week Ended 12/2/2017

The up trend continues with another big week of new contracts. Downtown Sarasota is not as rosy as it appears, however. Out of the 24 new contracts last week, 18 were Vue closings. See my comments in the pending report post for 11/4/2017 as to why these are likely older deals (ie created months ago but just now showing up). Still most other areas are up significantly over last year.

 

New contracts for week ended 12/02/2017Click here to download as pdf

 

 

Pending Report for November 4, 2017

This was a big week everywhere but none looking as big as downtown Sarasota. The figures for this year are distorted from 9 listings in the VUE closing this week and being entered in MLS for the first time.  In most large new construction projects, only a few sample listings are maintained in MLS. This keeps MLS manageable and from being overrun, so to speak, by a single building. If all of the VUE listings were entered from the project start, Zillow would be a mess with every other listing being in the VUE.

click here to download as pdf

When listings that were not previously entered in MLS eventually close, the listings are often entered in MLS at closing for agent/broker credit (as was the case with these listings). The listings still have to go through the same MLS progression. The contract date, listing date and sale date are entered the day of closing giving each the same date.  Undoubtedly all 9 of the new construction listings went to contract much earlier, perhaps even in previous years. Again, there is nothing wrong with this, you just have to be aware of it as you study the results. Demand Downtown was not up 1300% last week. (Another unavoidable side result of this is that the days on market stat will be ZERO for all such listings – be leery of any broker or agent including new construction sales in their quoted days on market performance).

Get ready for many weeks like this as loads new construction starts to close.

Another interesting thing to watch with regard to new construction closings, is how much of it ends up back on the market. I will try to highlight that for you.

Top Four Reasons Why You Can’t Sell Your Home

     (Or Why Your Home Didn’t Sell)

Before reading this article, I would recommend reading my blog post: “The 3 Biggest Changes the Internet Has Had on the Real Estate Industry.”

Even in the best of times, not all listings sell. Through the end of June 2017, over 1,250 residential listings have expired across Sarasota and Manatee Counties. If you are one of these sellers, then read on for a solution next time. If you are about to put your home on the market, reading this article might help you avoid a long, drawn-out fail.

Listings end without a sale for one or more  of four reasons, more or less in order of frequency:

  1. The asking price is too high
  2. The home does not show as well as it could (in disrepair, dirty, cluttered, etc.)
  3. Inadequate marketing
  4. Limited feedback and follow up

The Asking Price is Too High

Anyone can give away a home. Why should I pay a commission to someone that is just going to give the house away? You have to leave room to negotiate. What difference does the asking price make- people can always make an offer? All of these are old axioms that need to disappear into the abyss. I doubt that they were ever accurate and certainly aren’t now.

First, let’s talk about how high too high is. For starters, in the combined market of Sarasota and Manatee County for the calendar year 2016, the median sales price was a whopping 97.6% of the asking price. That’s pretty tight. On top of that, 32% of sales occurred at or above full price. So if you are priced $1 above the market value, you are overpriced compared to about a third of the market. If you are priced more than 2.4% above the market price, you are overpriced compared to half the market. Who will notice this? Don’t worry; only the prospective buyers will know. Read on.

Market price is usually estimated before you put your home up for sale by analyzing recent sales (not asking prices for homes that haven’t sold). The idea is to compare your home to those that sold and make adjustments for differences that would have a meaningful impact on market value, things like air-conditioned space, levels of upgrades/updating, view, number of bathrooms, etc. If the comps are selected correctly, the adjustments should net to a small number (less than 10% of the price). The larger the adjustment, the more difficult time you will have with price (the more difficult it will be to make prospective buyers see that same value).


Finally, consider that today’s buyer is probably the most market educated person in the room when it comes to the market for your home. If someone has been considering an offer on your property, then you can bet they have looked at dozens of homes online, seen many in person, and made countless comparisons between homes. If there is too much fluff in your price, at best, you will make other listings look like deals (see next section in this article), or at worse, they will never consider your listing because you have it priced out of their range (even though you would gladly sell it for a price in their range).

To recap, pricing high will not work, and there is no reason for it. As demonstrated in the data, buyers will pay at or above full price. You don’t need to lard up your asking price for any reason.

The Home Does Not Show Well

You can’t just blow this off, even in a great sellers’ market.  Builders spend hundreds of thousands of dollars staging a single home. They wouldn’t do this if it didn’t add to the bottom line. The good news is that you don’t have to spend much money. But you will have to devote time and elbow grease.

The idea here is not to spend thousands updating your home with the latest fads but doing common sense things that cost little and will add thousands to your selling price. Most home improvements do pay off, including ones you make right before selling.  Your home doesn’t need to look new and modern to sell, but it should be (and look/smell) neat, clean, and well-maintained. Maintenance is different than improvement. You don’t need to replace your 20-year-old laminate cabinets and counter tops with solid wood and granite. But the cabinet doors shouldn’t be hanging from one hinge and counter top should not be delaminating. Carpet is fine if it is stain free and not threadbare.

A must-read for anyone about to sell a home is Martha Webb’s book, Dress your House for Success. You can get it on Amazon for about $5.00. I could add nothing to what Martha has created in her book. So, rather than just repeat what she says, I will send you free her 13-page guide to dressing your house for success. Just visit scottnorris.com/order-your-copy-of-dress-for-success and order your free copy of Martha’s checklist. Enter your mailing address, as the checklist is copyrighted. I can only mail you an original (no email).

Inadequate or Ineffective Marketing

Most people, agents and consumers, know the internet is a popular place to search for homes and every listing should be on the internet. That assumption is correct, but there is much more to it.

Each year, the National Association of Realtors conducts a national survey designed to track trends in the real estate industry. The results are compiled and published in an annual report, titled “Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers.”  Consider these survey results from the home BUYER section from the 2016 report:

  1. How did you first learn about the home you eventually purchased
    • 51% – Internet
    • 34% – My Real Estate Agent
    • 8% – Yard Sign
    • 5% – Friend, Relative, Neighbor, Knew the Seller
    • 2% – Homebuilder
    • <1% – Print media, direct mail, open houses, all else
  2. Value of Website Features – % very useful
    • 89% – Photos
    • 85% – Detailed info about the home
    • 55%- Floor Plans
    • 50% – Virtual Tours

The biggest and, unfortunately, most common mistake made in marketing is the photography. You would think that, with pictures being the most helpful item to consumers, photography would receive the most attention 100% of the time. Yet, countless listings treat the photos like they don’t matter. Either the quality is horrible, critical shots are missing (like the view, even in waterfront listings you see this), or only a couple of pictures are provided. All listings should have the photography professionally shot and the maximum photos allowed should be uploaded. Cell phones or cheap digital cameras can never get the lighting right and don’t have a lens wide enough to shoot small rooms (you usually end up with pictures of furniture).

The next biggest issue is often half-hearted and hurried attempts to complete the listing, which leads to only the mandatory MLS fields being entered, with a couple of meaningless phrases entered in the public remarks section. Detailed information about the home is the second most helpful item on the list above. The MLS data is used to syndicate the listing across the internet. It needs to be completed and hit all the big selling features of the property. The public remarks section is critical because it will likely be read first.

The internet has made the yard sign a huge tool for sellers. For years, real estate agents have hung sign riders with a web address, where consumers can obtain pictures and other info about the home. However, current technology is to offer a number and property code on the sign that, when sent as a text by the consumer, will instantly deliver pictures and ad copy about the home to the customer’s smart phone.  No fumbling with a long URL; just text a 6-digit code to a 5-digit number and all the data and pictures are immediately texted to you, all while you are sitting in front of the home.

Feedback and Follow up

Feedback comes in a variety of forms. The best is from a conscientious agent that has just shown the home.  However, with the internet, everything is quantifiable. Each week provides little pieces of the puzzle in online showings, emails sent, emails opened, saved as favorite, number of showings etc. Looking at all these items each week will often point to some form of action required.

As you will read in the blog post referenced at the beginning of this article, the internet has sped up the sales cycle. By the end of the first 7 days, virtually everyone looking for a home like yours will know about it. By the end of 30 days, all interested enough to visit your home will have done so. Each week after week 2, your showings, online views, and calls will drop off significantly. Depending on the time of the year and the seasonality of your area, the decline in showings could be to where you receive more showings in the first month than you do the rest of the listing period combined. That’s why follow-up is so critical. If you are getting online views but no showings, showings but no offers, something is wrong. You need to reevaluate things quickly.

Tax Appreciation Rates on Longboat Key Condos

As in the Sarasota property tax article I posted last month, this post analyzes the change in the Property Appraiser-determined Just Values (market values before any exemptions or Save Our Homes cap) between 2015 and 2016 (latest available data). The Property Appraiser equates Just Value with market value. Since the valuations are always AS OF January 1 of the tax year, the change in value discussed relates to calendar year 2015 (the change in value that occurred between January 1, 2015 and January 1, 2016).  The 2017 valuation should be finalized later this year.

Also in the Sarasota post, I characterized the Property Appraisers valuation as good as any I could have derived, at least in a reasonable amount of time.  The Florida PA offices revalue every property every year using a mass evaluation technique.  The process is to assign a value to large sections of land and then use statistical techniques to allocate that value across individual parcels with each section. At first, the methodology sounds rough, especially compared to the typical Realtor® market analysis approach, where recent sales are analyzed and adjusted based on differences between the homes being sold and the subject property. Furthermore, the big swings in appreciation rates between buildings and across years in the schedule below cast doubt on the validity of using the Property Appraiser’s valuations for anything other than coming up with a tax bill.

However, consider that many condominium communities on Longboat don’t have a sale every year. In fact, of the 92 communities listed on the schedule below, only 70 had sales in 2016.  This means, for over 23% of the buildings, anyone appraising for any purpose would have to rely exclusively on sales in the surrounding area – much like what the PA office does. So wild swings or not, the PA calculations may be the best.

Whether the tax Just Value derived from the Property Appraisers’ approach is anywhere near the real market value is anyone’s guess. The same thing also can be said about the Standard & Poors/Case-Shiller numbers, generally the basis for all media reports of appreciation and taken as fact. They both are the result an estimation process.

In summary, the County PA offices figures (Just Value) are what I summarized below. I refer to the changes in value as appreciation as though it was a certifiable fact. You can make your own decision about the validity of calling this market appreciation. All references I make about appreciation here will be the year-over-year changes in Just Value.

Summary of Property Tax Just Value changes Longboat Key

The overall level of appreciation on Longboat Key condominiums during 2015 was 4.8%, down slightly from the 5.9% in 2014. Buildings on the west side of Gulf of Mexico Drive increased 5.2%, while those on the east side increased 3.7%. The Manatee end of the Key increased 8.6%, while the Sarasota end increased only 3.8%.

Other notes on the rate of change:

  • Condominiums in Bay Isles increased 3.6% or .8% better than other bayside communities on the Sarasota end.
  • Island-side condominiums in Longboat Key Club increased 2.2%, just a little more than half the average rate of all Sarasota-end communities on the west side of GOM.
  • The 2 age restricted communities changed as follows:
    • Case del Mar 8.3% or .5% points less than the average Manatee County west-side-of-GOM average.
    • Spanish Main 11.9% or about 4% points above the average Manatee County east-side –of-GOM average.

Percentage Change in Longboat Key Taxable Values by Condominium Building

This is the schedule I was referencing in the opening paragraph, regarding the variations between buildings and years. Some of the swings are hard to believe. Look at Harbour Links as an example.  In 2014, Just Values increased 56%, on average, in that community. The next year, they dropped 11%. It is hard to believe the market works this way.

Lonboat Key Changes in Tax Values by Buidling – click image to download complete list as 3 page pdf file

But it could. The only sale in Harbour Links during 2014 was for $425k, which worked out to $241/ft. The Just Value of this property on 1/1/2014 was $335k or $140/ft. The new valuation on 1/1/2015 came in at $596k or a 78% increase in Just Value.

To recap the history of this property:

1/1/2014   – Just Value is set at $317k ($132/ft)

6/19/2014 – sells for $425k ($177/ft)

1/1/2015    – Just value is set at $596k ($249/ft)

On the surface, it looks like the PA overshot the value. I am sure the new owner thought the same.

However, the next year (2015) saw 2 residences sell in Harbour Links for $576k and $528 ($241/ft and $334/ft), a range that makes the 1/1/2015 Just Value of $596/$249/ft for the 2014-sold-home seem more reasonable (effectively saying the buyer got a great deal).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top 3 Ways the Internet Has Changed Real Estate Sales

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Many people expected the internet would dramatically change the real estate industry and significantly lower real estate commissions. So far, this has not happened, nor really shown any signs of doing so. Still, the real estate industry has experienced a revolution, just not what was predicted. Here’s what’s happened so far.

The Internet Empowered the Consumer

First, the internet took considerable power from the hands of the brokers/agents and gave it to consumers. In the old days (up to the early part the 21st Century), if you wanted to know what was for sale, you had to call a real estate agent. If you drove past a home with a “For Sale” sign in the yard, you had to call the real estate office just to find out the asking price. If you wanted to make an offer, the real estate agent provided you with recent sales. If you were a seller during this period, you faced the same wall. The real estate agent shared the active listings and recent sales with you.

In every case, you had to trust you had a capable and honest real estate agent. One hundred percent of the information you received about listing availability, pricing, recent sales, and valuations all came from the real estate professional, and virtually all of it was unverifiable. I am sure the vast majority of the time customers received fair and quality information but equally sure there were varying flavors of quality, like everything else in the world.

Those days are over. Most buyers and sellers are well-informed about the market before they even contact a real estate agent. Active listings and recent sales, with photos, video, and considerable home and neighborhood data, are available on multiple real estate websites. Today, real estate agents and their customers have access to the same information. This means both parties to a real estate transaction (buyers and sellers) are also looking at the same data. Each party (buyer, seller, and real estate agents) may evaluate the information differently, but all the data is available to everyone.

The Internet Sped Up the Sales Cycle

Prior to the internet, real estate agents depended on direct mail and print advertising to get the word out about their inventory. Print advertising often took 1-2 weeks just to get the property in the local newspaper and maybe a month or longer to get the home into a home magazine. From there, there was a lag as buyers poured over the all the ads and identified the ones that appealed to them. Further, the information available was so thin, about the only action a buyer could take was to call the real estate agent. Most print ads (then and now) just have one small photo and two lines of text.

Price changes went the same way.  It took months for the entire buyer pool to get notified about a new listing or a price change that might put an existing listing within their reach.

Now, consumers sign up for automated listing updates through their agent or on their own with third party sites. Listings matching the customer’s requirements are emailed to the customer within minutes of being posted on MLS.  The listing information includes dozens of high resolution photos, video, pages of statistics and ad copy about the property and more. The result is that, within a week of entering the listing, the entire buyer pool is notified and fully educated about the listing. To get one customer this far along in the buying process 10-15 years ago took months.

The median days on market for a home (time between listing date and contract date) was just 47 days in 2016 for Sarasota and Manatee counties combined.  46% of all homes that sold, only required 30 days or less of marketing time.

The Internet Made Obsolete All Other Forms of Mass Media Marketing

The 2016 National Association of Realtor’s 2016 report, “Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers”, states 85% of home buyers said they first learned about the home they purchased either from the internet (51%) or from their real estate agent (34%). The yard sign accounted for another 8%, with friend, relative, neighbor, or homebuilder making up another 6%. That leaves 1% for newspapers, home magazines, open houses, TV, and direct mail. A few years ago, this “1%” constituted the entire marketing plan for the typical Realtor®.

The reason for print media’s disappearance is obvious. Relative to the internet, it has the following disadvantages:

  • Print media is not searchable. You can’t ask the newspaper only to show you homes under $500,000, for example.
  • It’s not complete. The Sunday ads only show a tiny percentage of all homes on the market.
  • The images are limited and poor (usually one in a print ad compared to 25 or more online, with video).
  • Print media is stale. Newspaper deadlines are close to a week and magazines may be over a month out.
  • Your only option to find out more about the listing is to call the agent. Online listings will contain most of the information the average person needs.

Implications for Sellers

If you are trying or about to try to sell your home soon, here is how these changes will affect you:

  • The amount and level of information available online is ideal for people that like to research a major purchase (that’s just about everyone). Most buyers are students of the market and often better informed than sellers. Today’s buyer is unlikely to pay you more than your home is worth. Pricing your home at more than it is worth will fool no one.
  • Plan on going to contract in 30 days or less. This is the new normal for the typical home because by 30 days, everyone in the market for your home will have a chance to see it. Many listings will literally receive thousands of online views during this period. After the initial 30 days, however, everything slows down exponentially. Now, you are only receiving views from new people entering the market, which is usually a fraction of the existing pool of buyers (everything comes in 1’s and 2’s). If your home hasn’t received at least 1 offer in 30 days, you need to take action, most likely, a price reduction.
  • Pricing your home has always been important, but now, it’s critical. And you don’t have to price your home high to get a good price. During 2016, 32% of all residential real estate that sold through MLS in Sarasota and Manatee counties did so at a price equal to or above the listing price. This also means pricing your home above market will make you look overpriced (or a poor value) compared to one third of your competition. Pricing your home at or just a few dollars above the market makes many people believe they are potentially “leaving something on the table”, a feeling amplified when they go to contract quickly. However, selling quickly no longer means you gave away your home. It means you sold into the largest audience you would ever have. It has to mean that you received the best price. If this initial pool of buyers didn’t like the value you were offering, what are the chances the next buyer entering the market will see it?
  • Internet marketing is much more passive than print advertising. Sellers often complain their agent is “doing nothing” because they don’t see the home in a print ad every Sunday or the agent is not holding an open house twice per month. Just know that, if all it took was two print ads or an open house to move a home, there wouldn’t be enough paper to print all the ads. Real estate professionals don’t favor these methods anymore because they don’t work (not for selling homes- building real estate brands, maybe). Same for open houses.

[CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD “Expired Listings- Don’t Become a Statistic“]

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About Scott

For 45 years, Scott Norris has lived in the Sarasota/Manatee area and has watched it flourish into one of Florida’s most highly sought-after residential real estate markets. Through his myriad of business experiences, including being a licensed CPA, working for a Big 4 accounting firm and a large national retailer, and selling real estate in the area for over 16 years, Scott has accrued a unique cache of knowledge and experience that enables him to serve as a dependable, invaluable resource for his clients. His understanding of business and finance, his knowledge of the local marketplace, with his professionalism and relationship building skills provide Scott with the foresight to address issues proactively before they become a problem and provide him with the ability to take a multidisciplinary approach to navigating today’s complex real estate environment.

 

Scott Norris
Broker/Associate
Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate
201 Gulf of Mexico Dr. Ste. 1
Longboat Key, FL 34228
941-545-8706
Scott@ScottNorris.com

Downtown Sarasota Pending Sales Up 40% Last 13 Weeks

Downtown Sarasota pending condominium sales are up 40% over last year for the past 13 week period. Existing home sales accounted for most of the increase, up some 36% over last year. New constructions sales for the past 13 week period were less than 10% of total sales

Longboat Key pending condo sales were up 13% over the past 4 weeks and 26% over the past 13 weels. Pending sales were down most of the season and worked their way back to even with last year by the end of April. Most of the increase came during June.

In the Lakewood Ranch area (not all homes in the 2 zip code area are in Lakewood Ranch) pending home sales were up 14% over last year for the past 13 week period. New home sales were flat  during this period so the entire increase came from resales. New construction pending sales are a much larger component of total sales than in Downtown Sarasota. For both 2017 and 2016, the last 13 weeks had 62 pending new construction sales or about a quarter of all home sales in the area.

 

Existing Home Sales Push Downtown Sarasota Condo Sales to 10 year New High

All data is from the My Florida Regional MLS for property type 
Condominium, ZIP code 34239 and for the time period indicated

First Quarter Downtown Sarasota Condo Sales

First quarter 2017 condo sales in downtown Sarasota of 110 where the highest since 2007 when 252 closed. The closing in 2007 included sales of 105 new construction residences that were completed during that month (and contracted for over the previous 12-24 months). Even without the new construction sales, however, 2007 was a barn burner with resales totaling 147. If only we knew that this would be the end for a while. The next 4 years sales in total would barely equal the 252 total in 2007. It would take about 2 and a half years just match the 147 resales.

Downtown Sarasota 1st Quarter Condo Sales Condo 2007-2017

Downtown Sarasota 1st Quarter Condo Sales Condo 2007-2017

Back to 2017, the 110 sales did include 8 new construction sales. However even 102 existing home sales would be the most total sales since 2007. When you consider all of the competition from new construction, this becomes even more amazing. Remember, when someone goes to contract on a new construction condo, the sale isn’t recorded until the unit closes. Closing doesn’t occur until the building is completed.

Downtown Sarasota Condo Sales by Price Range

The chart below shows the progression of sales by price over the past 10 years. 2008 was the first year of the crash and sales were the lowest of any year during the period by almost 50%. This probably distorted the figures some. However, over the past 5 years, about 9% of the total sales has been pushed out of the lowest bottom, “$0-$500k” range and into the top two price ranges.

Downtown Sarasota Condominium Invnetory

The next chart show that all categories have less inventory relative to sales than last year (Lower months of supply) with the exception of the $500k-$1M range, which increased slightly. We generally refer to markets with more than 6 months of supply as being buyers markets. In this case, the overall market is a just over 9 months of supply. Again, this is somewhat distorted because new construction is syphoning off sales – sales that wont show up until the buidling is completed months from now. Or anther way of saying this is that demand is greater than sales indicate.

Downtown Sarasota 1st Quarter 2017 Condo Sales

Downtown Sarasota 1st Quarter 2017 Condo Sales by price range

The final chart shows inventory and sales plotted on the same chart. There is a healthy relationship here with sales and inventory levels both moving up meaning that the market selling the higher levels of inventory. Furthermore there are huge chunks of pending sales waiting on the completion of buildings. If those sales had closed within say 60 days as most resales do, then the sales figures for the past 3 years would have been considerably higher. As it stands, a big chunk of those sales will likely close near the end of this year making 2017 one of the biggest years ever for condo closings in Sarasota.

Downtown Sarasota First Quarter Sales and Average Inventory 2008-2017

Downtown Sarasota First Quarter Sales and Average Inventory 2008-2017