Judging by some of the national media reports on the state of the housing market, many people probably are thinking that now's not the best time to buy a home, says Bob Glaser, president of Smith & Associates. He disagrees, arguing that, unlike other parts of the country, the Tampa Bay area's economy is strong, which makes the housing market more resilient.
"Tampa is fortunate because although the investors have left the market, buyers have found the affordability to be there to move back into the market," Glaser says. "We've had continued job growth and low unemployment in the Tampa Bay area. Buyers have re-entered the market at a time when the inventory of available homes is high, so they have a good opportunity to negotiate great pricing."
Glaser is not alone in his assessment of the area's real estate market. He cites a recent campaign by the National Association of Realtors, which says, "The Tampa/St. Petersburg area housing forecast is better than reported. ... In the second quarter of 2007, over 8,600 homes were sold in the Tampa/St. Petersburg area, a double-digit increase over the previous quarter. And the demand for future housing looks strong with 44,000 jobs added in the past two years."
Historically low mortgage rates also are a topic in the NAR campaign, which asserts that FHA-insured mortgage applications are on the rise.
These are just some of the reasons why it's an ideal time to purchase a home, Glaser says.
"Sometimes buyers overanalyze appreciation and markets only to regret they have not made the move to purchase the best valued home suitable for their needs today," Glaser says. "A home is more than an investment in your portfolio, it's where each person celebrates their life's growing experiences."
Glaser says the real estate market corrections may have had some negative effects on some companies, but the rough patch has given his company the opportunity to exercise creativity and consistency.
Smith & Associates has continued to seek out and hire the best agents, he says, adding that many have been with the company an average of 10 years or more.
"Real estate is cyclical and although no one can predict the exact timing of the market, past experience and current indications point toward a complete revitalization," Glaser says. "Home buyers are taking advantage of the marketplace and striking incredible deals. At Smith & Associates Real Estate, we are committed to keeping our customers informed and ahead of the curve.
"This year our buyers, over 1,290 of them, took advantage of finding the right priced properties."
For information, visit www.smithandassociates.com or call (813) 839-3800.