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Sally Galanos' Blog

By Sally Galanos | Agent in Palm Harbor, FL

Signs of stabilization for some in Pinellas County housing market

There is some encouraging news on the housing market for Tampa Bay, at least in Pinellas County.  The mainstream media reports on 3 or 4 counties to represent Tampa Bay.  Its a very different picture when you break down the numbers by county.
Pinellas County has seen a steady decline in inventory from an annual high of 19.6 months supply in January to only 9.6 months by this past July.  Even compared to July of '08 there has been a burning off of inventory by 38%.  Industry experts generally agree that a healthy, balanced market will offer 4-6 months worth of homes for sale.
For the past 12 months, the number of homes for sale in Pinellas County peaked last October with the total offerings at 9253.  Last month that number was down to 7039, a 24% drop.  The reason for this burn off is partly explained by the average price: from $290.0 in May of '08 all the way down to $177.0 last month.  The price per sq.ft. also declined from $170/sq ft in May of '08 to $112/sq ft.
I'll address other reasons in a future post.
So, are there any shining stars in this pricing free fall?  Absolutely!  Zip code 34685 is one of them.  This portion of Palm Harbor encompasses the middle of East Lake, including large developments like Lansbrook, Ridgemoor, Tarpon Woods, and Boot Ranch.  Inventory for 34685 also peaked in January of this year at 21.6 months supply and it is now down to 4.8 months, presumably a balanced market.  The number of homes for sale peaked in May of '08  with 177.  Last month there were only 145 for sale.  The price per square foot has been up and down since the first of the year.  In January homeowners were selling for an average of $275.0 and last month is was up to $319.0.  One last stat: year over year the average price per sq. ft. is actually up by 1%!   
Next post: Safety Harbor.

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