Real Estate Forecast for Tampa/Sarasota/St Petes

The Florida real estate market is hot. The Sunshine State is geographically immense and there are many desirable places to locate to.

Tampa, St Petes, Sarasota offer a lifestyle unique from that of Naples, Jacksonville, Miami, Orlando, Panama City and Fort Lauderdale.  Many retirees prefer the more sedate neighborhoods of Hillsborough County and this region.

The beaches in Sarasota, Siesta Key, LongBoat Key, Anna Maria Island, and along St Petes and Clearwater are some of the very best in the world. Combine that with Florida’s amazing economy, weather, environment, services, and tax advantages and you can understand the demand for Tampa real estate.

Let’s take a look at current home prices, sales, and available listings, along with historic numbers, and then get into forecasts and predictions about Tampa real estate for 2021.  Please share this report and bookmark it for new updates to come.

Tampa Home Prices

Zillow predicts home prices in Tampa will increase 8.5% in 2021 after a 10.4% rise this year.

Screenshot courtesy of Zillow

Tampa Bay Housing Market

Despite a shrinking inventory in Hillsborough County, the number of sales grew 39% year over year, and prices jumped 9.4%. In this county, single-family detached homes rose 15.6% in price year over year while house inventory has contracted 47%.  Housing availability will be even more stressed as the spring buying season begins.

Tampa Real Estate Statistics Summary. Screenshot courtesy of Greater Tampa Realtors.

Sales and prices in the Tampa/St Petes/Clearwater MSA climbed strongly over the last 12 months.  Houses and townhouse/condos are selling fast and for much higher prices. Demand is obviously high while supply is running thin which will be typical in the full Florida housing market forecast of 2021.  And contrast with the 5 year outlook for the US housing market.

Definitely wise to contact a Tampa region realtor to find houses for sale.

Screenshot courtesy of Greater Tampa Realtors
Screenshot courtesy of Great Tampa Realtors


Screenshot courtesy of Great Tampa Realtors
Screenshot courtesy of Great Tampa Realtors


Screenshot courtesy of Great Tampa Realtors

Inventory in Hillsborough County slumped 35% since last October.

Screenshot courtesy of Great Tampa Realtors

Inventory this year is highly constrained.

Screenshot courtesy of Great Tampa Realtors

Beautiful Homes and Amazing Lifestyle

The Tampa, Sarasota, Anna Maria Island, Siesta Key, St Petes region offers some beautiful seaside scenery.  Millions visit the area to vacation and with the new work from home mandate, workers and families are moving from the north (Boston, New York, Manhattan, Philadelphia, Chicago) to this region.

Although the pandemic has damaged the Florida economy, the incoming vaccinations and a recovery in 2021 should result in rocketing Florida home prices.

In this region from 2018-2021, job growth was expected to arise from construction (6.3%); professional and business services (5.2%); financial (2.5%); state and local government (1.4%); trade, transportation and utilities (1.4%); and manufacturing (1.3%).

Screen capture courtesy of Statista

Lawrence Yun of NAR, believes the Florida market will be a “big beneficiary of net migration” from buyers in high-tax states as New York and New Jersey, as those high tax laws chew into their income-tax deductions. “We’re already seeing that.

It’s the wealthy who are buying in Florida. Foreign buyers bought $23.8 billion in Florida real estate, more than double the figure from 10 years ago. Three quarters of those investors and buyers bought in cash. Wealthy buyers don’t need mortgages.

Buyers from China aren’t an issue since the Chinese typically buy in California. Similar to other states such as California and New York, there is a dearth of expensive luxury homes while a housing crisis exists at lower price points.

Should You Buy a Home in Hillsborough or Manatee Counties (Tampa, Sarasota)?

Southward into Bradenton, Ellenton, Sarasota, Long Boat Key, Siesta Key region, the outlook for 2019 is better. Zillow forecasts a 7.8% growth in prices in 2019. Anna Maria Island, Siesta Key, Long Boat Key, and Holmes Beach have a big price tag, even despite worries of Red Tide. Bradenton, Ellenton, and Palmetto offer very reasonably priced homes in the mid 200’s.

3 Things to consider Before Buying a Home/Condo in Florida:

  1. national, state and local economies
  2. real estate economy
  3. jobs and wage growth
  4. population trends
  5. taxes and costs of owning
  6. quality of life
  7. home or condo prices and price trends – appreciation

Tampa Area Rental Prices

As you’ll note here, that despite Tampa/Bradenton/St-Petes/Sarasota being a hot tourist zone, rental prices are actually below the national average.

Tampa 2 bedroom rental prices. Screenshot courtesy of Zumper.

Economics and Real Estate

The US economy is good and real estate economics are favorable due to growing jobs, wages, and tariffs against China.

With the economy strong, more people are vacationing in Florida, particularly older people who prefer the Gulf coast. It’s quieter, safer, and prices are comparatively low. Contrast prices here with those in other sunshine cities such as San Jose, Los AngelesSan Diego, San Francisco, as well as nothern cities including Vancouver, Toronto, Boston, Philadelphia, or New York, and you can see many in the north are selling and moving to Florida.

When you have confidence in the US economic picture, the state of the real estate market, confidence in Florida’s economy, and that prices have peaked in your own city, then committing to Florida is easier. Then you can begin investigating this area’s many beautiful communities, some gated, some not.

Florida Homebuyer Assistance Programs

Check out incentives and downpayment assistance opportunities along with FHA loans, VA loans, USDA loans, HFA Preferred Grant, Florida Assist, Florida mortgage credit certificate, rent to buy, and state mortgage assistance and other first-time buyer programs in Florida. Learn more about home buying assistance on NerdWallet and

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