Now that the pause button caused by the COVID-19 orders to shelter-at-home has begun to ease, there is clear evidence that demand for properties in the Sarasota Real Estate Market remains strong.

Late March and much of April were indeed extremely quiet, not just here but literally around the globe. However, there was an almost unexpected bump in activity starting in late April – my buyers were scheduling both virtual and in-person property viewings, and sellers were seeking advice on key areas of their home to focus on as they prepare for listing.

Luxury buyers are typically not known to be in a hurry to buy or sell. But with the loss of a couple of months of actively seeking to buy or sell, and perhaps being trapped in homes that suddenly started to show all their blemishes and shortcomings, activity has resumed. Though definitely not at pre-pandemic levels, the market is better than expected when I released last month’s report.

April results are in the data section below. Sarasota Real Estate Market activity mirrored much of the state and national sales, inventory, and pending sales decline. Though there is some data where Sarasota outpaced the rest of the country, there’s no question…it was a quiet month and the numbers reflect that.

In trying to read the tea leaves as best we are able, there are some key metrics that we can evaluate that give us trends month-to-date prior to the MLS releasing its final data, which is normally three weeks after the period closes. In reviewing that information, it appears that properties going under contract in May was pacing nearly 70% ahead of April and 8% higher than May 2019. While these properties will not close for another 30-60 days, it is a very promising track that I am hopeful will lead to sustainable recovery.

This last month I fielded many calls from buyers looking to relocate from more densely populated areas. In general, they are seeking not just our year-round warm weather, but also the safety and security the Sarasota area is known for, the favorable tax structure Florida offers, and of course our natural beauty, incredible cultural offerings and active lifestyle.

The other inclinations that I am hearing are the desire for more space – especially related to home offices and in-home gyms, as well as outdoor living space. After essentially being prisoners in their own homes, they have had time to consider what their priorities are in this new world.

With limited inventory in the Sarasota Real Estate Market and strong demand, the very best properties will sell more quickly, as my read on buyers is that they appear to have a greater sense of urgency to make their moves. On the other hand, those properties that may require extensive renovations or even rebuilding may sit on the market longer unless well priced.

Demand for the Sarasota lifestyle will serve us extremely well as the marketplace begins to emerge from the disruption created by the global coronavirus crisis. I look forward to working with you, your family, friends and acquaintances with interest in buying or selling real estate in our market.

April Sarasota Real Estate Market Statistical Analysis:
Real Estate Sales
  • Total market dollar volume this past month was $379.9 million which decreased by $106.6 million or 22% from a year ago.
  • Broken down, single-family sales were $275.3 million and condo sales were $104.6 million for the month.
  • The volume in single-family was down $56 million from last year while condo volume was down $60.7 million.
  • The number of properties sold this past month was 946, 291 less than a year ago. The sales total includes 632 houses, 161 behind of last year (down 20.3%) and 314 condos (down 29.3%), 130 below last year. The monthly sold properties average was 1,074 in 2019 and in 2018 it was 1,001.
    • Florida’s single-family sales decreased 20.7% from last year, and condo sales were 36.5% below last year. Homes sold for in excess of $1 million were 11.3% lower than April 2018 and condos closed at over $1 million fell 44.5%.
    • U.S. single-family sales fell 15.5% and condos were down 31.6%
  • Of the closed sales in Sarasota this past month 55 were for over $1,000,000, 40 were houses and 15 were condominiums.
  • In 2019 Sarasota averaged 32 house sales and 14 condo sales per month over a $1 million, a small portion of our overall sales.
  • Listings that went pending last month were 748, a decrease of 569 transactions from a year ago. For 2019 the monthly average for pending sales was 1,121.
    • Florida’s single-family pending sales decreased 26.5% and condos fell 56.6% compared to last year.
    • U.S. pending sales in April were 33.8% behind a year ago.
Real Estate Prices
  • Single-family homes in The Sarasota Real Estate Market were sold at a median price of $313,250 in April. The 2019 monthly median price for houses sold was $288,325.
    • In April, Florida median price for single-family homes was $275,000, a 6% increase over last year.
    • The national median price for existing homes grew 7.3% to $288,700.
  • The condo median sale price in Sarasota was $234,863. The 2019 monthly median price was $236,797.
    • Median price for a Florida condo in April was 209,000, a 7.7% increase over prior year.
    • U.S. median condo price grew 7.1% to $267,200.
  • Sarasota houses sold on average for $435,531 where the 2019 monthly average was $393,418.
  • Condos sold for an average price of $333,107 last month. The condo monthly average sale price in 2019 was $346,755.
Real Estate Inventory
  • Currently there are 4,165 properties for sale in Sarasota. This is a decrease of 292 listings from the month before. There were 4,086 listings at the end of 2019 and 5,401 listings at the end of 2018.
  • Of the available inventory for sale, 598 properties are listed for over $1 million. Of the active listings over $1,000,000, 432 are houses and 166 are condos.
  • The Sarasota market had 832 new listings the past month. The market averaged 1,040 new listings in 2019. Of the new listings the past month 36 properties were listed over $1,000,000.
  • Current inventory results in 3.5 months of single-family homes for sale in Sarasota and 4.6 month’s supply of condominiums, rendering what is considered a “seller’s market.”
    • Florida currently has 3.4 months of single-family inventory and 5.7 month’s supply of condominiums.
    • U.S. inventory of existing properties has fallen almost 20% from last year.

In today’s ever-fluid real estate market, the value of partnering with a highly experienced, locally as well as globally connected agent/broker, and a skilled negotiator and advocate cannot be understated.

Having served clients in The Sarasota Real Estate Market for 37 years and carefully analyzing our business conditions, I have developed essential insight to assist both buyers and sellers in achieving their objectives.

It would be my privilege to work with you or your referrals in acquiring or selling property.

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