When I first started out as an independent real estate agent in January 2017, I knew I wanted to provide a monthly market update to my clients, colleagues, and connections as a way to keep them quickly informed on how the Tampa Bay real estate market was at, where it had been, and where it might be going. As I take the time to research them myself, provide local insights, and write all the content, the monthly blogs are a true labor of love. So this year when my business exploded (thanks in part to referrals from those who know me, many of whom consistently read this blog), I found myself missing one month, then the next, and so on as I was spending all of my time working directly with my clients.
So far this year I have closed 43 homes (with 4 more to come in the next three weeks). Twenty of those were just in the three months of June - August! With the cyclical nature of this business, and always wanting to give my all to my clients, I have decided moving forward to make this a quarterly update. Don't despair! The other months that you're not receiving a direct update via my blog, I am always available to personally answer questions you have about the industry, or give you my take on the most recent developments and how that may affect our area both short and long term. I just won't be sending the blog out every single month. With that being said, I invite you to enjoy my first QUARTERLY installment of the Tampa Bay Real Estate Market Update, covering Q3 - July through September!
As I definitely personally experienced, April - June are the busiest months of the year in our area. So it's no surprise that the overall number of home sales dropped 7.6% from Q2 to Q3 in Hillsborough, Pasco, and Pinellas counties combined. That being said, the number of home sales was up 6.6% over Q3 in 2018, indicating real estate sales are still going strong in Tampa Bay. Across the three counties, 17,474 homes were sold in Q3 of this year, averaging a healthy 5,800 sales a month. While mortgage rates were slightly higher this time last year (which may have contributed to less sales in 2018), I think it's more likely that the mortgage landscape as a whole looked different over the past 3 months than it did during the same time frame in 2018. Throughout most of 2018, rates stayed pretty standard, but at the beginning of 2019 rates climbed to the highest they've been in years, then declined over the year to their lowest point so far by the first week of September. Six months of declining mortgage rates right after a spike likely encouraged people to move forward with home purchases that they had been putting off, contributing to the healthy growth year-over-year in home sales we just saw over the past quarter.
As month-over-month home prices can fluctuate pretty dramatically, a quarterly update is more representative of this data point. This year, we saw the average sales price in the three counties rise by 6.9% from last year, and by 1.3% since last quarter. Gone are the days of double digit year-over-year growth for most homes in our area, but this is actually encouraging as our market is starting to reach a healthy equilibrium. The average sales price for Q3 across the three counties was $276,546, with Hillsborough at $288,646, Pasco at $229,895, and Pinellas at $311,097. Interestingly, the average sales price for homes in Pinellas county in Q2 vs Q3 was virtually exactly the same, with the average sales price in Q2 being only $14 higher! That's a consistently performing market!
Earlier this year, days on market had started to creep back up, making many agents wonder if we were finally seeing a swing to a buyer's market (after being in a seller's market for almost a decade). But the Q3 median time on market was only 24 days across the three counties, down from 27 days in Q2 and up only 1 day from Q3 2018. Homes only being on the market for such a short time, coupled with extremely low inventory makes for a competitive buyer's market, especially in certain price points. If you're interested in buying a home, it's so important to work with a Realtor who knows the process so you have the best possible chance of being able to buy the home you love.
In the third quarter of 2019 in Hillsborough, Pasco, and Pinellas counties, there was $4.98 billion of residential real estate sold, up $44 million over Q3 last year. There were 25,705 new homes listed on the market in that three month time frame, though months of available inventory was still low (indicating an extreme seller's market). Another plus side for sellers - homes that sold in the last three months sold at 99% of their listing price, which is actually the highest it's been all year.
The fourth quarter is always an interesting time for our real estate market, as people prepare for the holidays and everyone's pace naturally begins to slow. So whether you or someone you know is thinking of selling or buying a home, please let me help guide you (or them) through the process. I provide personalized service to make sure my clients' specific goals are met, and it helps to have a knowledgeable Realtor working for you as there are many steps to take on either side. I can even help you if you're buying new construction.
Remember, real estate is hyper-local and what's happening in your neighborhood could dramatically differ from someone else's. If you'd like a customized analysis of your home's current value or help deciding whether it's the right time for you to buy a home, please contact me directly as I'd be happy to provide local, expert advice.
Keller Williams Tampa Properties
5020 W Linebaugh Ave #100
Tampa, FL 33618