Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Tampa Real Estate Update –Throughout Tampa Bay Home Sales See Best October in Four Years

Tampa Bay home sales had their best October in four years! According to recent data from the Florida Association of Realtors real estate sales in Hillsborough, Pinellas, Pasco, and Hernando counties totaled 2,758 in October, the month’s highest sales number since October 2005. This excellent progress in the Tampa Bay real estate market is largely attributed to first-time buyers purchasing sharply discounted homes while taking advantage of the $8,000 first-time home buyer tax credit.

However, this positive rise was not restricted to the Tampa Bay area. According to an article from the St. Petersburg Times, all 19 Florida metro areas reported year-over-year gains in home sales. This greater number of home buyers was also seen nationally with interest and activity increasing throughout the country. Foreclosure and pre-foreclosure homes made up close to half of all sales in October.

In addition to the activity from the first-time home buyers, Florida has also seen a great deal of recent interest from foreign real estate investors. Florida currently leads the country in the amount of international buyers, accounting for nearly a quarter of foreign home buying activity, according to MSNBC.com.

These foreign investors are turning to the Florida real estate market in search of vacation homes and rental properties, drawn to the sunshine and low priced homes. While these foreign buyers love floor-level prices, they are also confident in the housing market resurgence and a long-term recovery of the U.S. economy. This confidence has helped drive sales.

Throughout Tampa Bay we have witnessed an increase of interest from Canadian, Russian, European and South American investors looking to pick up the best deals before they are gone. Between these foreign investors and first-time home buyers, housing market activity continues to make a steady move upward.