ORLANDO, FL - Florida's existing home and existing condo sales continued their positive trend in fourth quarter 2011, posting gains compared to the same period a year earlier, according to the latest housing statistics from Florida Realtors®.
Existing home sales rose 7 percent in 4Q 2011 with a total of 42,038 homes changing hands statewide; during the same period the year before, a total of 39,355 homes sold, according to Florida Realtors. Statewide sales of existing condos in the fourth quarter rose 4 percent compared to the year-ago sales figure.
Florida's existing-home median sales price was $132,000 for the three-month period; down only 1 percent from the $133,400 reported in 4Q 2010. The median is a typical market price where half the homes sold for more, half for less.
In the year-to-year quarterly comparison for existing condo sales, 18,558 units sold statewide in the fourth quarter compared to 17,922 units in 4Q 2010 for a 4 percent gain. The statewide existing-condo median sales price was $88,800 in the fourth quarter; a year earlier, it was $84,400 for a 5 percent increase.
"The quarterly numbers continue to show the steady improvement of the housing market in Florida," said Florida Realtors Chief Economist Dr. John Tuccillo. "The upward movement in sales has been pretty much across the state. Prices have stabilized, and in general, the state's economy is improving. With that improvement, we expect continued growth in housing activity."
Mortgage rates continued to hover around historical lows in the fourth quarter. According to Freddie Mac, the national commitment rate for a 30-year conventional fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.01 percent in 4Q 2011; one year earlier, it averaged 4.41 percent.
The 4Q 2011 sales data release is the last release handled under Florida Realtors' partnership with the University of Florida's Bergstrom Center for Real Estate Studies. Beginning with the January 2012 existing sales statistics, Florida Realtors will launch a new statewide housing market reporting partnership with 10K Research and Marketing, a division of the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors® and its Industry Data and Analysis department.
10K will collect and organize housing sales data from the state's 63 local Realtor organizations. The goal is to provide unique, localized market reports to the local Realtor boards and associations, enabling the groups and their Realtor members to serve as the definitive voice of real estate in their respective local markets.
At the same time, Florida Realtors will provide more comprehensive statewide housing market statistics – but the data series will only include statewide numbers. Beginning with the January 2012 report, Florida Realtors will no longer report any market data for Realtor members' sales in the state's metropolitan statistical areas, as had previously been reported.