Moulton Sarasota Real Estate Report – May 2017

Spring Sales Swell

Looking back at the Spring Selling Season in the Sarasota Real Estate Market, total sales in the months March-May grew more than 7% over 2016, with condominium transactions seeing the largest growth over prior year.  At the same time, inventory has also grown generally keeping up with demand, and has been pretty evenly split between new listings of single-family and condominiums.

The result of this steady sales and inventory growth has been a shift, bringing the market closer to neither favoring sellers nor buyers.  However, in the less than $250,000 tier there continues to be a scarcity of product, especially in the most desirable locations where our workforce and young families are looking to buy.

In the greater than $1 million tier, inventory has grown quite substantially in the single-family home segment, taking available properties to a nearly 15-month supply.  This is forcing sellers to reassess their pricing strategy, potentially creating an advantage for buyers seeking a home in this category.  In the luxury market of condominiums, inventory is closer to a 6-month supply, which is considered a position of market equilibrium.

In May, pending sales once again improved over prior year, indicating that June sales may again show growth in the Sarasota Real Estate Market.  Recent surveys of consumer confidence have shown that it continues to rise, further fueling the all-important economic engine of real estate.  Analyses of the homebuilder market also reflects their confidence in the market’s demand and ability to absorb new homes and multi-family development.

In addition, economists have released their projections after the 1st quarter of 2017 indicating that, barring any major geopolitical disruption, the U.S. economy is on track to grow GDP at a rate of 2.5-3% over the next few years, after a flat 2% rate for the last eight years.  This is expected to translate into more jobs and wage growth, increased household wealth, and will most likely trigger more investment in real estate.

Looking at the whole of The Sarasota Real Estate Market and comparing to national and state data, the following are some of the key points that I assimilated from the many resources I review on a monthly basis:


  • Total sales in The Sarasota Real Estate Market in May improved by 10% over prior year and increased slightly from April, with total dollar volume rising by $6,000,000 over April and approximately $8,000,000 over May 2016.
  • Single-family home sales in May of 822 were 61 more than a year ago or 8.7% higher, and increased slightly compared to March.
    • Florida’s single-family sales grew 7.6% compared to last year, recording the most ever homes sold in a month.
    • U.S. sales were up 2.7% from prior year.
  • Total number of condominium units sold of 425 in Sarasota in May was nearly 13% higher than a year ago, and increased by 44 sold properties from the prior month.
    • Florida condo sales were 8% higher than May 2016, also setting an all-time record.
    • Condo sales nationally grew 3.2% over May 2016.
  • The 2016 monthly average of single family sales was 653, and for this year the monthly average is 678.  For condos the average monthly sales in 2016 were 301, and this year it is 349.
  • All cash sales in Sarasota continue to be strong with 36% of single-family and 62% of condos sales were closed without a mortgage.
    • By comparison, all cash transactions in all of the U.S. were 22% of sales.
  • Pending sales of 753 homes that went under contract during May, increased by 12 sales over the same month last year, a 1.6% increase.  Condominium pending sales of 425 increased by 48 sales from a year ago, a 4.2% increase.  This statistic is helpful in projecting sales growth in the 30-60 days ahead.
    • U.S. pending sales fell 1.7% compared to prior year.
    • Florida’s pending sales saw approximately 7.5% increase in homes going under contract in May.
  • The monthly average of pending sales this year is 795 for houses and 401 for condos.


  • In May, Sarasota’s single-family homes were sold at a median price of $260,000 vs. $263,000 a year ago.
    • Florida median price for single-family homes was $239,000, a 7.7% increase over last year.
    • The national median price for homes was $252,800, a 5.8% increase over prior year.
    • The median price for a NEW home in the U.S. is currently $345,800 – 36% more than an existing home.
  • The 2016 monthly median price average for houses sold in Sarasota was $249,867 vs. this year it is $260,524.
  • Condominium median sale price was $225,700 in May, 3.1% higher than 2016.
    • Median price for a Florida condo last month was $178,000, an 8.1% increase over May 2016.
    • U.S. median condo price in May was $238,700, a 4.8% increase.
  • The average sale price for houses in Sarasota was $345,835 in May vs. $377,779 a year ago.
  • The year’s monthly average price for houses sold in 2016 is $363,986 vs. $357,128 this year to date.
  • Sarasota’s condominiums sold for an average price in May of $338,511 vs. $358,234 a year ago.
  • The 2016 monthly average price for sold condominiums was $325,371 vs. $345,614 this year.
  • Sarasota properties sold at 95% of the list price, which mirrors the rest of Florida and the U.S.


  • Total available inventory in the Sarasota Real Estate Market decreased by approximately 200 properties from April and grew by 450 properties or 11% from a year ago.
    • Inventory fell slightly in Florida in April, and declined 8.4% across the U.S.
  • For single-family homes, inventory has grown by 41 properties since the beginning of 2017.
    • Compared to May 2016, growth last month was evenly distributed across all price ranges.
  • Condominium inventory in Sarasota has decreased by 47 properties since the beginning of the year.
    • The growth in May compared to prior year in the condominium category was seen most in the under $200,000 and over $1 million tiers.
  • The Realtor Association of Sarasota-Manatee reports that there are 4.5 months of single-family homes inventory and 5.2 month’s supply of condominiums, basically a balanced market.
  • Sarasota County averaged 1,162 new listings per month in 2016, about the same monthly average as 2015, and this year the five-month average this year is 1,397. In May 1,214 listings came on the market.
  • Currently there is available inventory of 4,589 properties for sale vs. 4,595 at the end of 2016 and 3,598 at the end of 2015.
  • The higher inventory in The Sarasota Real Estate Market has been affecting list-to-contract periods, further suggesting that we are moving closer to a market that favors neither sellers nor buyers.

With the homebuilder sentiment maintaining optimism, new home sales are expected to help to improve availability in some price tiers where inventory is tight.  The challenge remains finding quality finish workers, enough laborers to keep production on track, and a rising cost of materials.  These concerns may be what led to the drop in U.S. home starts of 2.4% and permits down 1% last month.  The Census Bureau reported that new home sales last month grew 11.3% in the U.S., and Florida’s new home sales rose 2.9%.

It is my hope that the new building that we’re experiencing in the Sarasota Real Estate Market will continue to fill demand and help to keep the market in a healthy buyer/seller balance, allowing for our sales and prices to continue on their steady growth through the summer months.

Despite being in what many consider to be our quieter summer selling season, I have seen only a slight dip in demand from new and repeat clients looking to purchase.  I am convinced that the Sarasota Real Estate Market is a year-round pursuit for eager buyers and sellers.

If you have interest in listing your property, let’s talk.  My proprietary “Comparative Market Analysis” enables me to quickly analyze your home or property to help you to determine the current value of your home, what key factors might be most important to consider when pricing, and in what general time frame you can expect a sale based on today’s market conditions.

On the other hand, if your interest is in buying, I would be pleased to work with you in establishing the areas within the Sarasota region that most interest you, develop your key purchasing criteria, share with you my knowledge of the community that will be helpful in narrowing your focus, and help you find that dream home or condominium!

It is always my pleasure to work with friends and family of my valued newsletter subscribers.  Please let me know if you hear of someone seeking to buy or sell a property in our community – you know you can count on me!


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