Real Estate

Realtors: Florida housing set to get 2016 boost

The numbers from 2015 showed home sales and listings healthy

Florida’s market for 2015 showed in increase in their year-end numbers from the year before. 

For Florida, 2015 ended with more new listings, closed sales and higher median prices than the year before, according to the latest housing data released by Florida Realtors

"In the fourth quarter and throughout 2015, we've seen positive signs that Florida's housing sector is growing steadily," said 2016 Florida Realtors President Matey H. Veissi, broker and co-owner of Veissi & Associates in Miami. "Home prices are rising at a more moderate pace while closed sales remain strong. Florida's economy is in growth mode, more jobs are being created and mortgage interest rates remain at historically low levels, which will continue to drive the state's housing market in 2016."

2015 showed a 12.4% increase in single-family home sales, according to data from Florida Realtors Industry Data and Analysis department.  The total number of homes sold was 274,769. New listings for single-family homes rose 3.7%, and the statewide median sales price for 2015 was $196,000. 

The sales for town homes and condos for 2015 totaled 114,969, a 6.1% increase from the previous year, according to an article by Florida Realtors. There were fewer short sales for town homes, with a decline of 44.6%.  Short sales for single-family homes decreased by 7.1%.

The inventory for single-family homes and town home/condos was at 4.3 months and 5.4 months respectively at the end of 2015.

"2015 was a very strong year in terms of sales growth in Florida's single-family home markets, thanks to a sales surge that began in the fourth quarter of 2014 and lasted through the third quarter of 2015," Florida Realtors Chief Economist Dr. Brad O'Connor said. "In each of the first three quarters of 2015, we observed double-digit percentage increases in sales on a year-over-year basis. Year-over-year growth in 2015's final quarter was more subdued, signaling a possible return in 2016 to more stable rates of sales growth.”

According to Freddie Mac, the interest rate for a 30-year mortgage averaged 3.85%, 0.32% less than 2014’s 4.17%. 

"We expect home prices, on the other hand, to continue to rise at an elevated pace in 2016, as much of the state is in the midst of an inventory shortage that is likely to persist throughout the year," O’Connor said.  

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