Looking Back Ten Years


It’s hard to believe that 10 years have passed since the low point of the Great Recession. The whole country experienced the greatest real estate value correction since the Great Depression of 1929. Some states were hit harder than others and as we all know all to well, Florida sustained quite a blow. Short sales, REO’s, foreclosures comprised a bulk of the market and it was not a good time. Institutional investors invaded the single-family market in wholesale acquisition mode. Lenders were inept at dealing with the sheer magnitude of the problem and Real Estate attorneys had a field day. The Fed stepped in, banks got bailed out, some borrowers were fortunate enough to be granted a mortgage modification, rates dropped and it was pretty miserable. But eventually the word “recovery” started getting tossed around in the mid-2000s quite a bit and for all intents and purposes low and behold we eventually recovered.

As the saying goes “real estate is local” so let’s take a look at the changes in the Pinellas County market in the last 10 years. The graphs below summarize the last 10 years of Pinellas County’s residential real estate market. The data I used is compiled from our local MLS and is comprised of closed sales from the last quarter of each year.

The low point of the market was 2011 with 1,839 residential properties sold with a median sale price of $187,000. Fast forward to 2019 and you can see we closed out 2019 with 4,751 properties selling at a median sale price of $262,000. In summary two and a half times the number of homes sold in 2019 versus 2011 and the median sale price rose 40% over the same period. That’s a healthy recovery in anybody’s book. I’ll take it, thank you. And in case you’re wondering; the prior peak was in 2005 with 4,590 properties sold at a median sales price of $221,000 which is nearly identical to 2016.

The forecast for 2020 looks optimistic with mortgage rates and unemployment at record lows. Not to mention more and more people are moving to Florida every year… over 900 a day according to State economists. Here’s a question for you. Where else in Florida would you rather be? Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando? Think about it. The Tampa Bay area has it all… beautiful clean beaches, employment, recreation, one the best airports in the country, professional sports, nice people.

In closing, I wish you all the best in 2020 and don’t hesitate to call me anytime with a real estate question. 

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Pete Doiron