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Wednesday, Apr 23, 2014

Local home sales take deep drop


Published:   |   Updated: December 19, 2013 at 06:03 PM

Home sales dropped by double digits in the Tampa Bay area last month, showing a significantly deeper decline than the state.

The four-county area including Hillsborough, Pinellas, Pasco and Hernando counties saw single family home sales drop by 11.6 percent compared with the same month last year while condo sales plummeted by 16.2 percent, according to a report released Thursday by the Florida Realtors trade group.

Statewide, single-family homes declined by about 1 percent while condos dropped about 7 percent.

While November is typically a slow month, the drop in sales continues to reverse a long trend of monthly year-over-year increases.

In Pinellas County, sales declined 15.5 percent overall and the change may be a result of rising flood insurance costs scaring buyers away from coastal homes, the Pinellas Realtor Organization said in a statement.

Other coastal cities such as Miami, Fort Lauderdale and Fort Meyers saw smaller dips in sales, though inland areas like Orlando and Lakeland had larger declines than the Tampa Bay area at more than 16 percent.

Sale prices fared better. The median price for single family homes in the Tampa Bay area last month was $150,000, a 7 percent increase compared with the previous year.

The number of sales closed with cash has also declined across the state, which analysts with Florida Realtors attribute to investors continuing to leave the market.

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