Analysis: It’s Easier for Buyers to Find a Home in Fla.
ORLANDO, Fla. – The inventory of for-sale homes has hit a record low, but many Florida metros aren’t suffering as much as other areas of the U.S. When mortgage rates dropped in late 2019, some buyers scrambled to secure a home before rates rose again, sending an already tight inventory into an evener tighter inventory, according to a realtor.com analysis.
However, no Florida city made realtor.com’s “20 toughest markets to find a home” list, and seven Florida metros are on the “easiest markets to find a home” list. Sunshine State metros are in the top three spots and four of the top five spots.
“Buyers searching in easier markets generally benefit from a combination of strong availability of homes for sale and, with some exceptions, healthy, yet more moderate price growth,” says Danielle Hale, realtor.com’s chief economist.
The average median listing price for the top 20 easiest markets was $356,345 in January, which is 3% higher than the average median price of the nation’s 100 largest markets.
Cape Coral-Fort Myers led realtor.com’s easy list, suggesting that homebuyers in this Southwest Florida metro area have the largest selection of available listings in the U.S.
20 “easiest to find a home” metro areas
- Cape Coral-Fort Myers – 37.9 listings per 1,000 households
- Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach – 31.8 listings
- Deltona-Daytona Beach-Ormond Beach – 30.9 listings
- Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, Conn. – 29.7 listings
- North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton – 25.8 listings
- Jacksonville – 21.8 listings
- Charleston-North Charleston, S.C. – 21.7 listings
- Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, Va.-N.C. – 20.9 listings
- Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, Nev. – 19.9 listings
- New York-Newark-Jersey City – 19.5 listings
- Baton Rouge, La. – 19.2 listings
- Des Moines-West Des Moines – 19.1 listings
- Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, Texas – 18.4 listings
- San Antonio-New Braunfels, Texas – 18.4 listings
- Lakeland-Winter Haven – 17.6 listings
- Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford, Conn. – 17.4 listings
- New Haven-Milford, Conn. – 16.8 listings
- Urban Honolulu, Hawaii – 16.7 listings
- Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville – 16.5 listings
- Greenville-Anderson-Mauldin, S.C. – 16.4 listings
Toughest markets to find a home
The housing shortage is hitting markets across the country, making places like Buffalo and Rochester, N.Y.; Columbus, Ohio; and Salt Lake City feel more like the competitive housing markets and tech hubs of San Francisco, Silicon Valley and Seattle, realtor.com reports.
San Jose, Calif., topped the list as toughest housing market in the country, with just four listings per 1,000 homeowner households. Markets like San Francisco and Rochester and Buffalo, N.Y., followed. Overall, California led the nation with six of the top 20 toughest markets to find housing, but Ohio followed with three markets – Columbus, Cincinnati and Akron.
“While the nation’s housing supply continues to hit new lows just in time for the spring homebuying season, local market differences remain,” says Hale. “Although the toughest list is sprinkled with some of the markets you’d expect, others may be a surprise – they represent markets where housing is still affordable, but quality of life makes them attractive markets, especially for first-time buyers.”
The average median listing price for the top 20 toughest markets was $480,830 in January, which is 40% higher than the average median price of the top 100 largest markets across the country. Further, 17 of the top 20 toughest markets began the year 2020 with double-digit annual declines in available inventory, meaning housing shortages are only worsening, realtor.com reports.
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