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MLS Statistics: March 2024

The 2024 Real Estate Market in Sarasota and Manatee Counties: Trends and Predictions

SARASOTA, Fla. (April 18, 2024) – The real estate markets in Sarasota and Manatee counties have undergone significant changes throughout the first quarter of 2024, reflecting broader economic influences and evolving buyer and seller behaviors. This press release provides an overview of these changes, based on the latest data released by Florida Realtors®, and offers insights into the implications
for the remainder of the year.

Key Trends in Q1:
• Increased Inventory Levels: Inventory grew 64.6 percent for single-family homes and 90.9 percent for townhomes and condos across both Sarasota and Manatee Counties since Q1 2023, significantly shifting market dynamics.
• Extended Time on Market: Median time to contract for single-family homes and condos increased to an average of 43 days in Sarasota County and 51 days in Manatee County in Q1 of 2024, indicating that properties are taking longer to reach the closing phase.
• Price Adjustments: Median sales price decreased year-over-year in March 2024. Single-family homes decreased 0.6 percent and townhouses and condos decreased 6.1 percent combined across Sarasota and Manatee counties.
• High Cash Sales: In Q1, cash sales increased by a total of 5.9 percent across Sarasota and Manatee counties for single-family homes and condo transactions. This trend highlights a significant portion of buyers and investors, who prefer or can bypass traditional financing routes.

The data suggests that both Sarasota and Manatee counties are transitioning towards market conditions that favor buyers, with more negotiating power due to increased supply. However, the high rate of cash sales continues to impact the dynamics, potentially sidelining first-time homebuyers and those reliant on financing.

“The real estate market in 2024 has been one of adjustment and realignment. Buyers and sellers in Sarasota and Manatee counties should stay informed on these trends, as they indicate a more competitive market heading into 2025,” said Tony Barrett, 2024 RASM President and Broker/Owner of Barrett Realty. “Particularly, buyers have more options and leverage, while sellers might need to adjust expectations regarding pricing and time on market.”

March 2024 Statistics
Inventory, also referred to as active listings, has more than doubled in both counties when compared to March of 2023. In Sarasota County, inventory increased year-over-year by 76.6 percent to 3,374 for single family homes and 100.3 percent to 2,153 for condos. In Manatee County, inventory increased by 51.3 percent to 2,581 for single family homes and 78.9 percent to 1,519 for condos.

In March, the months supply of inventory (MSI) for single-family homes increased to 5.3 months in Sarasota County and 4.1 months in Manatee County. For townhomes and condos, the MSI increased to 6.8 months in Sarasota County and to 6.4 months in Manatee County. Florida Realtors® states that the benchmark for a balanced market (favoring neither buyer nor seller) is 5.5 months of inventory.

The median time to contract in Sarasota County is at 40 days for single-family homes and 51 days for condos, a year-over-year increase of 60 percent and 183.3 percent respectively. In Manatee County, median time to contract increased by 10.9 percent to 51 days for single-family homes and by 134.8 percent to 54 days for townhomes and condos.

The median sales price for single-family homes in Sarasota County decreased year-over-year by 2.5 percent to $515,000 and decreased by 8.9 percent to $385,775 for townhomes and condos. Manatee County condo prices decreased by 2.8 percent to $342,988, while single-family home prices increased by 1.4 percent to $498,805.

In March 2024, cash sales remained high. Sarasota County reported 44.5 percent of single-family home sales and 70.3 percent of townhome and condo sales were paid for in cash. Manatee County had 33.4 percent of single-family homes and 51.8 percent of townhome and condo sales paid for in cash.

There were 1,453 closed sales for single-family homes in Sarasota and Manatee, an 8.2 percent decrease from the same time last year. Closed sales for condos decreased by less than one percent to 686 sales. As the market begins to shift to more competitive levels, these current trends provide opportunities for buyers but require sellers to be more strategic in their approach.

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