Sarasota Real Estate Sales Up for 2012

Seven Years of Volume Increases - Three Years of Price Increases

Total sales for the 2012 Sarasota Real Estate Market came within ½% of 2005 sales levels.  There has been a nice upward trend which started in 2007.  The difference this year was an overall reduction in inventory by nearly one-third over prior years.  Simple supply and demand rules means one thing, the bottom is behind us as we predicated almost a year ago and prices are starting to rise while inventory shrinks.

Unit Sales

Units Sales for Sarasota County by Year through 2012

Sales for Sarasota County came in at 10,511 total units up 10% from last year’s 9,548.  Compared to the 10,999 sales in 2005, the real estate market has come back to levels not seen in 7 years.

Average Sales Price Up

Annual Average Sales Price per Year for the Sarasota Real Estate Market as of 2012

2012 came in with an average sales price of $247,528 which is ahead of 2011 by 6.6%.  It also represents the third year of gains which in our opinion is the beginning of an upward trend.  In many areas, we have started seeing difficulty finding homes for qualified buyers.

Average Price per Square Foot Up

Saraosta Annual Price Per Sqaure foot of Sold Properties in Sarasota by Year

2012’s average price per square foot of $138.57 is ahead of 2010 and 2011’s $131.33 representing a 9.5% increase.  2011 and 2010 showed almost unchanged with a 1% drop which is virtually unchanged or flat.  Combined with the nearly one-third drop in inventory, prices will likely continue a modest uptrend into 2013.

Cash vs. Financing

Financing remains a challenge.   As long as banks can borrow from the FED at 0% and buy 10 year Treasuries for around 2% with no risk, buyers looking to finance will be under intense scrutiny even with good credit and assets.  Even without banks participating in this market at levels we would like to see, there is still plenty of cash flowing into this market well ahead of the past years.

Total Dollar Volume of Sales by Year for Sarasota

Sales listed as “all cash” represented 63.6% of all sales.  When you move into Siesta Key or Longboat Key condominiums, this rate is closer to 75%.  It is obvious that many buyers will finance their Sarasota purchase through (for example) the refinance of their principal out-of-state residence vs. financing a second home.  If you are financing, we can’t stress enough using a local lender or mortgage broker.  They understand the difficulties and can help you to work through some of these challenges.  Consult with your SarasotaOne Partner to find who the most trusted and capable lenders with a track record are.

Cash vs. Non-Cash sales by Year for Sarasota Real Estate Sales


All significant price and unit categories have shown higher highs and higher lows since 2010.  Inventory has fallen from the 6,000 range of 2010 and 2011 to the 4,000 range of homes for sale in the majority of 2012.  Higher demand with fewer homes for sale will tend to push prices upward which is what we are seeing the beginning of.   Annual numbers show a nice bottom in place since 2010 with a gentle sustainable upward movement in prices.  Days on market (the time a property is first listed until there is a contract) dropped 41 days from 136 to 95 when compared to December of 2011 to 2012.

John Woodward
Sarasota Real Estate Group


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