February 2019 Monthly Real Estate Update

February 18, 2019 by The727Team

What’s included in every real estate update?

Interesting Real Estate Stats

Recommended Articles Of The Month And Why

Real Estate Local News

Interesting Real Estate Stat For This Edition:

Every month we’ll pull an interesting stat for you directly from our MLS for Pinellas County.

Inventory is going up!

Take a look at these two reports I pulled from MLS. The first one shows inventory of residential homes between the dates of December 20th 2018 and January 20th 2019. This shows a total of 1,108 active listings.

This second report is from the last 30 days. It shows that we are up from 1,108 active listings to 1,828 which is a pretty significant jump.

January through February Inventory Count

A big reason for that is that homes are staying on the market longer. If you’re set up on one of our autosearches you may have noticed seeing some of the same properties over and over. This is because MLS triggers a send out any time there’s a price drop and we’re seeing a lot of drops as the market starts to correct.

Nice homes that are priced correctly are still getting snatched up pretty quickly however we’re not seeing the fierce competition as we did previously. This is especially true in higher end homes starting around 350k. There is a lot of inventory in the 400k-600k range that is not moving for months. Buyers in this price range are enjoying more of a buyer’s market and if you look at sold stats you will many times see a much bigger percentage discrepancy between list price and sales price.

Let’s talk about mortgage rates. I briefly covered the fluctuation of interest rates throughout 2018 in our January monthly update. If you’ve been paying attention to the 30 year interest rates on mortgages you know that rates went from from an average of about 4% at the beginning of 2018 up to around 4.5%, then climbed to almost 5% and then back down to around 4.5%.

Right after this climb to almost 5% we saw the market start cooling down a bit and what’s interesting is that even after dropping back to 4.5% on average, the market still seems to be cooling off which is great news for homebuyers in 2019.

The bad news? According to information compiled by themortgagereports.com only 1 of 6 housing authority agencies predicts sub 5% rates throughout 2019.

Honestly is that really that bad of news though? As mortgage reports points out, 5% used to be considered a super low rate but now seems steep compared to the 3-4% rates we’ve been seeing the past few years.

Historically speaking 5% is still extremely low. Take a look at this graph below which shows mortgage rate history over the past 48 years. Rates at one point peaked around 18% but tend to average around 6-10%

Let me give you a hypothetical on how much even just a half a percentage makes. If you were to buy a home for the current national average home price of $200,000, a half percent interest rate would raise your payment by $62 per month or $744 per year. That’s an extra $22,320 over the life of your loan. Of course many people refinance at some point during the life of their loan but you never have that chance if rates keep creeping up and settle around the historic average of 6%-10%.

This graphic below illustrates the difference in payment on a $200,000 home with a 20% downpayment. 

What’s new locally?

The normally peaceful block of 400 Central is about to see some action. New York based developer The Red Apple group has proposed an enormous multi-use tower to become the tallest building in Downtown St. Pete.  This building will consist of residential condos, a hotel, and also ground floor retail along Central Avenue. It’s currently projected to be 52 stories and 610 feet tall.

Proponents of this project say that this will help put St. Pete on the map by giving our city a skyline. If completed, this building will be 160 feet taller than the current highest building in Downtown St. Pete, the ONE Tower. You can see more renderings and read more about this project on St. Pete Rising.

 Conclusion

That concludes our February update! Thank you for reading and feel free to reach out to us if there’s anything we can help you out with. If you’re looking to buy in a month or a year, it’s never too early to get in touch with us to get the process started.

Also remember to think about us when your friends and family need some real estate help, we are never too busy for your referrals! Have a great day!

Sincerely,

Chris Formico

Recommended Articles Of The Month:

For this update, we’ll highlight some must-reads we’ve written:

Top 10 Nicest Neighborhoods In Tampa Bay – This article outlines our favorite Historic Neighborhoods and it has some great local videos! Each neighborhood has a more in depth article linked as well. 

Hyde Park Village


Top Best Up & Coming Neighborhoods in SeminoleSeminole is a suburban city that still has up and coming neighborhoods.  Looking for family friendly? This is a good place to start. 

Real Estate News:

Here are some news stories you may enjoy!

Forbes Real Estate Forecast for 2019 – How rising mortgage rates will effect the market and how 2019 is the year of the millennial home buyer.

Top 20 Home Inspection Photos An article outlining the outlandish things found during home inspections.

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727team.com Monthly Real Estate Update

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