Florida Housing Forecast 2020 | Real Estate Update Miami Orlando Tampa

Florida Housing Forecast 2020 | Real Estate Update Miami Orlando Tampa

Florida Real Estate Market 2020

The Florida real estate market has thrived through 2019 and is ready to greet many new homeowners in 2020.

When the US economy is rolling and Americans are wealthy, they look to buy in Florida. The economy is diversifying and each year baby boomer retirees and young people alike seek the subtropical climate Florida offers.

That strength along with a new trade deal with China, and relaxation of tariffs could produce another housing boom in the state.  Should you buy a home in Florida? Compare prices to the California Housing Market.

Considering the low prices, economic outlook, and beautiful weather, it could be a wise long term real estate investment choice. Let’s see what happened in Q3 and in September.

Florida Home Prices and Sales Q3 & September

Single detached home sales in the state rose 11.5% in September while home prices rose $13400 over last September 2018. Condo sales rose 6.1% while condo price rose $10,500 from last September. Overall, prices rose 4.8% over the last 12 months.

Inventories are dropping. New listings dropped by 1400 units from last September while active listings dropped by 5,000. Supply dropped from 3.9 months to 3.6 months.

New house listings across Florida dropped by 2.2% to 96,984 units, and condos/townhouse listings dropped 4.5% to 39,618 units.

A lot of optimistic forecasts of Florida’s economy over the short and long term suggest Florida’s housing market will grow too. You can view the Florida & Metro Forecast. The report says the Sunshine State’s GDP will expand 3.1% through 2020 and job growth be 1.9% in 2020 and 1.4% in 2021, which is much higher than for the national economy.

The 3rd quarter was good for the whole US housing market, and it was better in Florida. In 3rd quarter, home sales rose 8.1%. Home prices rose 3.9% from one year ago. Condo townhouse prices rose 4.1% to $190,000 and sales rose 2.2%.

Closed Sales Q3 2019 – Chart courtesy of Florida Realtors

Average home prices Q3 Florida – Courtesy of Florida Realtors

The economy is strong in metros such as Tampa, Sarasota, Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, and Jacksonville. Consumer confidence is strong and demand for Florida fruit and vacations is high.

The national economic outlook is excellent for 2020 and beyond.

Contrast Florida home prices with those in California or New York, and combine this with the favorable tax situation here, and we’re surprised more baby boomers aren’t selling and moving to the Sunshine state.

Multifamily units in Sarasota

Questions?  When is the best time to buy a home in Florida? Where is the best place to buy in Florida?  How do I buy a house in Florida? Perhaps it’s time to contact a Florida Realtor to help you find the deals and perhaps scare up a gem.

Q3 Florida Home Sales Statistics Report courtesy of FloridaRealtors

Florida Realtors Youtube Report


Zillow Forecasts

Zillow gives Florida a hot rating. And that’s without the current optimism being celebrated by the stock market. They predict home prices will rise by Sept 2020 to $245,000 or a 3.2% growth YoY.  Current average prices are $237,900 which is a 4.4% change from last September.

Homes with negative equity has dropped to 7% of owners. The state has a higher than average mortgage delinquency rate of 1.4% which is higher than the national average.

Zillow says bottom tier prices are $141,000, middle tier at $246,000, while top tier come in at $412,000. Naples has the high home prices at $329,100, followed by Miami at $300,500. Tampa homes are a very reasonable $184,200, while St Petes at $181,100 and Orlando at $167,100 seem a small price to pay for a slice of Florida heaven.

Florida Rentals

Owners and Investors will be pleased by the growth curve in average rents in Florida.

Florida rental prices timeline courtesy of Zillow

The condo market in most US cities is hot in spring, but especially so in South Florida and Miami Dade. Foreclosures/REO, and Short Sales are down signalling the Florida condo market is healthy.

Sales/Prices Back in the Summer of 2018

Here’s what happened in summer of 2019 just for context. Now that we’re over the trade transition, with mortgage rates forecasted to head downward and payments reduced, we might forecast that Florida’s 2019 prices will be slightly higher than these:

The Orlando/Kissimmee/Sanford housing market saw prices jump 10% while sales grew 8%. Sadly inventory dropped by 11% YoY. The median price for single-family homes sold in Orlando in April rose 9.4% YoY to $257,000. The median price for Orlando condos increased 20.4% to $130,000, substantially more than condos in Miami. One report has it that only a 1.3 month of supply of single-family homes listed at below $2000,000 is available.

The Tampa Sarasota Housing Market is hot. It ranks 6th in loan applications from those ready to move. According to Zillow, the median home value in Tampa is $209,200. Property prices have risen 14.7%  YoY.  Zillow predicts they’ll rise 9.7% within the next 12 months.

The median price of Tampa homes is $299,900 while the median price of homes that sold is $238,400.  The issue is the price mismatch between prospective buyers and those wishing to sell.

As mortgage rates rise and loan qualification gets tougher, while prices rise, first time homebuyers are in for a struggle to buy in the Orlando, Tampa, Hialeah, Fort Lauderdale, Naples or Florida Key areas.

Florida State Sales by City or Statistical Region

Florida home price chart courtesy of Florida Realtors

Should You Buy in Florida in the Next 5 Years?

The doomsday people are always calling for housing crashes and stock market crashes. Yet, economist forecasts seem to be optimistic, pointing to flat interest rates and strong employment rates and GDP. Even better, oil and gasoline prices are falling, more people will qualify for a mortgage, wage growth is picking up, and housing prices should continue upward for 5 more years.

The housing market in Miami, Tampa/St Petes/Sarasota, Orlando, Panama City, Sarasota, Naples, Fort Lauderdale, and even Boca Raton are compelling real estate investment value propositions for snowbirds and other buyers in North America.

Interest in buying Florida properties is persistent and given the strength of the Florida economy, and tax situation in the sunshine state, and an aging population, we should see strong prices for many years.   The recent tax changes may discourage speculative investment but speculators may consider Florida cities some of the best in the nation.

Homesnacks believes these Florida cities will have the strongest population growth which translates to strong housing demand:

  1. Sweetwater
  2. Groveland
  3. St. Cloud
  4. Doral
  5. Fruitland Park
  6. Palm Springs
  7. Winter Garden
  8. Parkland
  9. Ocoee
  10. Apopka

Florida average homes prices – top cities 2019. Courtesy of Zillow

Florida Housing Market History

Lately, the Florida housing market is characterized by a lack of new construction, big price reductions on new condos, a disappearance of South American property buyers, softened house and condo prices, and of course, low taxation rates.

Choosing Your Florida Home Style

Anyone considering buying a home in Florida will be impressed with the variety of homes here.  From modern 3 bedroom bungalows to condos in towering buildings to quaint beach houses to spacious multi-million dollar mansions, you can have your dream life, walk the beaches, shop for hours, and never have to shovel snow.  For a lot of buyers, that’s a compelling value proposition.

With more babyboomers hoping to retire somewhere nice, and who have been holding onto their old home because they have nowhere to go, they will find Florida a solid asset as a home or real estate investment.

The Houston real estate market, San Diego Real Estate market, Seattle real estate market, Vancouver real estate market and even the Costa Rica Real Estate market are also preferred destinations for retirees and those looking for luxury homes.

PWC in its new major US housing report, names Miami/Fort Lauderdale/West Palm Beach as the 3rd highest target destination from migrating people from other cities in the US.

The luxury real estate market was hit hard in Florida, and there is an oversupply of luxury homes. However, interest and sales are expected to rebound (From US and soon Canadian buyers as the CAD falls), and homes for sale in Fort Lauderdale, Naples, and Miami are expected to rise.

Should You Buy a House/Condo in Florida? 8 Things to Consider

Whether you’re buying a second home/vacation home or you’re considering moving to warm, sunny Florida, look at a few matters beforehand:

  1. can you afford to live in the region or neighborhoods you have targeted?
  2. which cities and neighborhoods are safe and pleasant to live in?
  3. summers are hot and humid. Can you take the heat and the indoor life?
  4. do you like golf, fishing, walking the beach, boating, and water sports?
  5. how well can you run your business from Florida and how much back and forth travel will you need to do?
  6. what is the actual cost of living?
  7. how much will your mortgage payments be for the next 10 years?
  8. is there a true demand for your area of work/profession?

A lot of people love Florida and some don’t like it at all. If you could live here during the winter only, as many snowbirds from New York, Toronto, Montreal, Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago, and Washington do,  buying a home/condo might be a no brainer. All you’d have to focus on is finding a home at a bearable price.

Florida’s $1 Trillion Dollar Economy

Florida’s economic performance continues in 2019 will shine as will the US economy. This is why the sunshine state is  attracting so many new residents and home buyers. Orlando’s population grew 18% and disposable income growth over the last 5 years was an amazing 12.8%. A look at the Florida GDP below, can see more growth is forecasted.

South Florida’s population hit 6 million for the first time, and Miami Dade hit 2.7 million residents. Tampa Sarasota region was in the top 10 nationally for population growth and Orlando saw 48,000 new residents arrive.

That’s generated strong demand for housing and rental units in South Florida.

As reported in Tampabay.com, the Florida economy will reach $1 Trillion this year and $1.074 trillion in 2019. Florida is an important state having 5% of the US economy but 10% of new jobs. Tourism and housing were the key industries.

Hurricane Irma and the destruction of the citrus crop have suppressed the Florida economy and the state has difficulty attracting skilled workers. Wages do lag, yet real estate in Florida overall is very reasonably priced. Only Texas is a better bargain.

With the Florida economy rolling along nicely, there’s no reason to believe there is a downside to buying property in the Sunshine State. And sunshine is a key benefit for most buyers here.

Interest in Orlando and Tampa real estate has been particularly strong and that’s likely due to the lower prices. Even homes in Boca Raton and Fort Lauderdale are half the price as those in Miami.

However the economies in Tampa and Orlando are holding their own and drawing in new residents due to lower than expected prices on condos and homes.

Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Effects

The experts are still struggling with the affects of the Feds tax bill, amidst a housing slowdown.

What the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act does mean:

  1. sales of homes between $750,000 to $1 million will slow because loan interest isn’t tax deductible any longer
    purchases from New York buyers seems to be growing
  2. income tax cuts for almost everyone means people will have more money to buy real estate and pay mortgages
  3. the reform retains sellers’ capital gains exemption, which excludes the first $500,000 in profits for couples and the first $250,000 for single filers

Let’s not forget Florida’s benefit of having no state tax. Combine that with the reduced federal tax cuts, and companies that are bringing their manufacturing and head offices back to the US , Florida is an ideal place to come home to.

Florida Home Prices

According to Zillow, home prices in Florida are expected to rise slowly.  That has to look good to home sellers in Boston and New York, as well as Canadian buyers in Toronto, who have home values that rival the highest in Miami.

Chart courtesy of Zillow.com. Comparison of home prices with California, Texas, New York and Nevada 2018

Florida Home Prices and Predictions (update Nov 2019)

City Zillow Home Price
Zillow Price Sept 2020
Miami $305,500 $334,000
Hialeah $234,700 $295,000
Fort Myers $213,400 $216,000
Saint Petersburg $181,100 $225,000
Tampa $184,200 $225,000
Tallahassee $166,900 $187,000
Orlando $167,100 $251,000
Jacksonville $179,600 $187,000
Pensacola $151,300 $159,000
Fort Lauderdale $316,700 $319,000
Boca Raton $343,600 $351,000
Naples $329,100 $323,000
Sarasota $262,600 $269,000
Miami Beach $375,500 $375,000
Kissimmee $221,300 $230,000
Panama City $196,400 $199,000
Cape Coral $230,000 $234,000
Pembroke Pines $315,200 $322,000
Clearwater $217,700 $227,000


When is the best time to buy real estate?  Find out more about the best investments in 2020 including investing in real estate in 2020.

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