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As real estate sales in Sarasota continue upward, pending sales “hit an 11-month high in February 2012, demonstrating once more the health of the local industry as the buying season heats up. Median sale prices were also up substantially for single family homes and condos in February 2012 compared to this time last year – another positive sign for a successful home buying season.”

SAR President Laura Benson said “”I have heard nothing but positive reports from our members about the seasonal surge in our real estate market.” “Sales are up, prices are stable and much higher than last year at this time, and we are seeing multiple offers on many transactions. Pending sales are off the charts – we hit an 11-month high of 1,130 in February. This is all very encouraging news.”

As Sarasota real estate agents, we don’t have to tout Sarasota as this beautiful community with warm weather; the incredible vista of the Gulf of Mexico and Sarasota Bay along with the city’s cultural jewels continues to sell itself.

There was a slight holiday lull that didn’t last very long as buyers continued to be interested in purchasing properties while prices were low. “The 177 condo sales in February represented the highest level in the last eight months. If pending sales, which represent properties going under contract, produce the expected level of closed sales, we could see a major selling month in March 2012. That could repeat what we saw in March 2011, when sales hit the highest total since 2005.”

There was an overall 15% increase in property sales in February 2012 over sales in January 2012 as well as a 17 percent increase in pending sales from the previous month. These MLS sales figures both point to a robust selling season. Closed real estate sales reported “414 for single family homes and 177 for condos, lower than in February 2011, but higher than last month. In February 2011, 471 single family homes and 201 condos were sold.”

“The single family home median price climbed to $167,500 in February 2012 from last month’s figure of $162,000. For condos, the figure fell to $150,000 from the January level of $180,000. Last February, both single family homes and condos were selling at the median price of $137,500, so both of the current numbers reflect a stronger market than a year ago. Single family home prices were a whopping 21.8 percent higher than in February 2011. Condo prices were 9 percent higher than last February.”

“The inventory for February stood at 4,588, down almost 5 percent from January’s 4,711, and 20 percent lower than last February’s total of 5,864. With fewer available properties, the law of supply and demand indicates asking prices could be climbing higher in the coming months.

The inventory hit a 10-year low of 4,408 in August 2011, and has remained at or close to this low level since then. As the inventory has slid, the months of inventory has also dropped. The figure now stands at 7.2 months for single family homes, compared to 8.3 last month and 8.0 months in February 2011. The figure was 9.1 months for condos, compared to 11.3 months in January and 10.4 months last February. A figure of 6 months is considered equilibrium between a buyer’s and a seller’s market.”

Once again Sarasota real estate agents point out that real estate is local. Sarasota, Florida’s extraordinary waterfront location, climate, environment, cultural amenities, healthcare, education, shopping and dining are all part of the reason why SRQ is our home. Sarasota’s residents are pretty special too!

The Sarasota real estate market is making a nice comeback. When the housing bubble burst several years ago, many buyers took a break from one of south Florida’s most popular areas. Now, with Siesta Key taking honors once again in Dr. Beach’s Top 10 Best Beaches list, and Sarasota named as the Best Place to Retire by Portfolio.com in 2010, along with the unbelievable winter of 2011, buyers are back in full force. Florida was the only place in the United States that had no snow last month! With Sarasota’s near-perfect climate, beautiful beaches and incredible 80 plus golf courses, once again the Sarasota real estate market is on the move.

365 Things to do in Sarasota Florida

365 Things to do in Sarasota Florida

Visit our 365 Things to Do in Sarasota Florida page on FaceBook.com and Click the “like” Button to Discover all of the wonderful things to do here.

Many Sarasota real estate buyers have been traveling to the area including the barrier islands of Casey Key, Siesta Key, Bird Key, Lido Key and Longboat Key for decades. They visited as children, then as adults and now as retirees or second homeowners. Many try to time the real estate market, and with lower prices, lower interest rates and a considerably good inventory of homes, condos, town houses and villas, now may be the right time to benefit from the opportunities in the Sarasota real estate market. Gulf front and bayside condominiums are at discount prices as well as golf and country club resorts which offer amenities galore: golf, tennis, swimming, fitness centers and an array of social activities. Country clubs communities like Lakewood Ranch, the Oaks, Prestancia and University Park appeal to families as well as retirees and baby boomers.

Known around the world for its cultural offerings, the area offers more than just a warm climate, beaches, and resorts.  Sarasota Florida is home to the Florida West Coast Symphony, John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, Sarasota Opera House, the Sarasota Orchestra, Asolo Theater, Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall and much more. Sarasota’s cultural amenities are numerous and include 30 independent theaters.

You can shop till you drop in Sarasota. St. Armands Circle shopping showcases outstanding specialty shops, restaurants and fashion boutiques. Downtown Sarasota real estate focuses on the new urban lifestyle and residents enjoy antique stores, specialty shops and the art galleries of Palm Avenue as well as outstanding restaurants, cafes and bistros.

2010 Sarasota Real Estate Activity

The Sarasota MLS system currently reports that over 6,000 single family homes sold in 2010 in Sarasota County. In addition, another 2,700 condos, villas and townhouses changed owners. The MLS system currently shows inventory of 3,900 homes for sale and 2,600 condos, townhouses and villas.

BuySarasota.comIf you are interested in learning more about real estate on the southwest coast of Florida, visit www.BuySarasota.com. Our comprehensive website has detailed information on hundreds of neighborhoods and condominiums. We have a team experienced Sarasota Realtors ready to assist you with all of your real estate needs.

Phone: Contact the John Allen Team direct at 941-544-6467

Sarasota Real Estate

Sarasota Real Estate Sales Stats for September 2010

The Sarasota Association of Realtors just released statistical data for the September 2010 Sarasota real estate market.  The data mirrored the numbers that we saw in August. Both prices and sales were almost identical to the numbers from the previous month. In addition, the report states that September 2010 figures are “virtually identical” to the median price and unit sales from a year earlier in September 2009.

Eric Shumway, SAR President, pointed out that “we’ve observed a very steady local real estate market for the past 12 months.” August and September are typically our slowest months for real estate activity.

For the full report: click here http://www.sarasotarealtors.com/Sept2010stats.pdf

The Obama Administration & Congress Need to Make a Decision on Income Taxes

We are seeing many buyers that appear to be waiting to see what the Obama Administration and Congress will be doing with regards to Taxes. There is so much uncertainty out there because of the Obama Administration’s failure to make a decision and take action on setting the Tax Rates for 2010. In order to get the economy and real estate market going, the emphasis needs to be on restoring confidence to consumers and small businesses. Business and consumers seem to be waiting on this administration to make a decision. We are working with many buyers right now that are putting off large decisions (like buying a home), because they do not know what the repercussions will be on Income Taxes and Obamacare.

Foreclosure Moratorium

In addition, the foreclosure moratorium would be disastrous for the real estate market. Banks certainly need to be following the law. But allowing hundreds of thousands of delinquent homeowners to remain in their homes because of technicalities will only add to the challenges of the real estate market. So far, President Obama has been reluctant to place a nationwide freeze on foreclosures. Democrats like Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid have pushed for a nationwide freeze on foreclosures. Many are speculating that this is an effort to win votes in the mid-term elections, despite the harm that a move like this would do to the economy. So far, the President has resisted the pressure from the left wing. Let’s hope that he stands strong.

Always setting the standard for luxury, the Ritz Carlton has done it again with the Ritz Beach Residences on Lido Key. From the dramatic staircase in the lobby throughout the building the Ritz has added luxurious amenities that opulent buyers expect. The Ritz Carlton Beach Club sits next to the main building and includes a bar, restaurant and spectacular outdoor beachside pool and spa. All the services of the Ritz are available to the residents at this prestigious address on Lido Key.

Amenities included at the Beach Residences include: 24 hr guarded gate, concierge services, guest suites, social room, state-of-the-art fitness center, and more.

The Sarasota MLS currently reports 12 condos for sale at the Beach Residences on Lido Key. Prices range from $1,399,000 for a three bedroom, three bath designer ready condo to $4,195,000 for a fabulous Gulf front condo. There is one sale pending at the Beach Residences and three condos have sold in the last six months.

For more information on condos for sale at the Beach Residences or any other Lido Key condos, please contact the John Allen Team at 941-544-6467. Our agents know Lido Key and show all Lido Key condominiums.

L ambiance is an elegant two-building condominium on Longboat Key.  This 24 hr guard gated community offers its residents outstanding amenities behind the gates of the Longboat Key Club.  Play tennis, swim, walk the private beach or workout at home every day.  If golf is your game, the course is minutes from L’Ambiance Longboat Key.  Walk to the Longboat Key Club for lunch – whatever your heart desires – it’s a fabulous beach lifestyle at L Ambiance!

L Ambiance on Longboat Key Sales Update

The Sarasota MLS currently reports 4 condos for sale at L’Ambiance on Longboat Key.  Prices range from $1,395,000 for a spacious 3 bedrooms, 3 bath condo built in 1992 to a larger condo with 3 bedrooms, 3 ½ baths priced at $2,599,000.  There are two pending sales at L Ambiance.

Downtown Sarasota and St. Armands Circle are minutes away from L Ambiance as well as many of Longboat Key’s wonderful restaurants and specialty shops.

If you are searching for elegant real estate on Longboat Key, contact the John Allen Team.  Our experienced agents specialize in luxury Longboat Key condos.  We can help you with a  condo at Positano, Sanctuary and Villa di Lancia too – all elegant beach residences on Longboat Key.

Naples based builder, London Bay, purchased the remaining 86 building lots at the Founders Club.  The company will also take over the maintenance and marketing of the Founders Club real estate.

Located East of Interstate 75 at Fruitville Road, the Founders Club consists of 700 acres.  There are 286 home sites surrounding the golf course, lakes and tropical acreage.  Famed golf course designer, Robert Trent Jones, Jr. designed the golf course.  The Club House is one of the most charming in Sarasota bringing a low country design to the area and showcasing some of the area’s most precious golf history.

The Founders Club is sure to see some significant improvements since the members purchased the remaining golf course memberships and now Builder Magazine’s 2008 Builder of the Year will start new designs beginning with a remodeled sales center.  London Bay builds homes starting in the $800,000s.  Custom designed homes feature fabulous architectural detailing and quality designs sought in a builder of luxury homes.

Currently the Sarasota MLS reports 26 current listings for sale at the Founders Club.  Prices range from $674,000 for a 4 bedroom, 4 and ½ bath home to a 5 bedroom, 5 ½ bath home with over 6,000 sq.ft. priced at $3,999,950.  Pending sales at the Founders Club total 3 and 8 homes have sold in the last six months.

If you are interested in more information on the Founders Club or any other Sarasota real estate for sale, contact the John Allen Team at 941-544-6467.

The Sarasota Board of Realtors just released sales data for property sales in the Sarasota real estate market in July 2010.  As expected “sales slowed to pre-tax credit numbers following the expiration of the federal $8,000 homebuyer incentive.”

In July 2010, there were 525 total sales which was a 47.8 percent declines from the June 2010 figure of 776 sales. The reported stated that “the sales figure was much closer to the 506 sales in January 2010 and the 528 sales in February 2010, when the homebuyer credit wasn’t a factor in the market.” Pending sales were lower too, dropping to 653.

Single family homes for sale in Sarasota sold dropped to 374, compared to 576 single family homes sold in June 2010.  “The median price also trended lower at $155,000, compared to June’s figure of $175,000.  The figure was more in line with the 12-month rolling median sale price of $162,000.”

Sarasota condo sales in July totaled151.  This was down from last month’s figure of 200.  “The median price of condos also fell in July to $127,000, which again primarily reflected distressed property sales.  Non-distressed condo sales saw a median price of $227,500, while for distressed properties, the median sale price was $73,000 for bank-owned condos and $121,700 for condos involved in short sales.”

Eric Shumbway, 2010 SAR President pointed out that slower sales were predicted once the tax credit expired.  He also pointed out that Sarasota is “not immune to economic forces which continue to limit the nations’ recovery.”

To read the full report, click HERE for the complete PDF version of the Sarasota Board of Realtors’ press release, along with two pages of statistical charts.

If you are thinking of listing your home or condo, it is critical that you price it correctly.  More than ever, correct pricing is the most important factor for getting your home or condo sold.  A current appraisal, a comparative market analysis (CMA), and an experienced agent are three tools that will help determine the appropriate listing price for your home or condo.  Very often, short sales and foreclosures are your competition.  No matter what you think your house is worth, it is only worth what a Buyer will pay for it.  Don’t be emotionally attached to your home and get an expert to do the pricing if you really want to sell.  You need to know your competition, not just what has sold in the last three months.

Sellers who price their homes realistically by competing with foreclosure and short sales will sell their homes in a reasonable amount of time.  Some Sarasota real estate listings that are priced agressively, receive multiple offers and sell for more than their asking price.  Investors know the market and they are looking for foreclosures and deals to fix up and sell again.  These same buyers are Internet savvy and keep up to date on properties the minute they hit the market.

You can sell your home too!  As long as there are buyers visiting properties, making offers and successfully negotiating prices, homes will sell.  Talk with an experienced Sarasota real estate agent to help you successfully sell your home.

Some waterfront properties and exclusive neighborhoods are doing extremely well.  Homes are selling above their asking price as buyers who keep a close eye on the market step in to negotiate a price with sellers.  The John Allen Team can help you close your deals.

We have buyers looking for properties daily. Buyers want a deal, and deals are being made.  Give John Allen a call today at 941-544-6467 to help you with your purchase or sale of real estate.  Our Team can help you with all of your real estate needs.

Sarasota Florida’s real estate sales for 2010 just keep getting better even with negative press about the oil crisis to our north, the end of the taxpayer credit and looming worries of a bad economy.

The Sarasota Board of Realtors released stats today for June 2010 and “once again property sales topped the 700 mark” hitting the highest level for this year.  Sales were higher than any date since December 2005.  The previous high for Sarasota real estate sales was in May of this year when sales topped 766.  June property sales totaled 776.  Sales were 27.2 percent higher than last year in June.

“In June, 576 single family homes were sold, 28.3 percent higher than June 2009, when only 449 single family homes sold.”  Homes values are trending higher also.

Condo sales totaled 200 in June showing a 24.2 percent increase over June 2009.  Median price of condos fell, primarily due to distressed property sales.

Once again, pending sales were strong although not as high as the period where homebuyers were eligible for tax credits.  Eric Shumway, 2010 SAR President pointed that Sarasota “anticipated a potential drop off in sales with the expiration of the $8,000 tax credit.”  Strong June figures show continued strength in the Sarasota real estate market.

Distressed property sales for foreclosures and short sales rose in June and property inventory dropped.  Inventory is at the lowest level since the late summer of 2005.

The return of a seller’s market is in sight for properties under $250,000.  To read the full Sarasota real estate report, click here.

Contact the John Allen Team for more information on Sarasota homes for sale at 941-544-6467.  Visit our newest comprehensive downtown Sarasota real estate site if you are searching for an urban lifestyle.

The International Property Journal reports in their online blog that Sarasota, Florida is the “Best Place to Buy in the Western World.”  Those of us who live and work in Sarasota have been shouting and touting Sarasota’s amenities and beauty to the world for quite some time.  The report “ranks popular resort and second home locations around the world.”  Since Sarasota real estate prices have fallen tremendously in the past two years, Sarasota is the cheapest holiday home location in the western world according to the report.

Sarasota Florida’s warm climate, tropical breezes and magnificent waterfront vistas are a huge draw internationally.  Offering its residents cultural venues such as the Sarasota Opera, the Ringling Museum of Art and the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, Sarasota has become home to many professionals, sports and entertainment celebrities as well as baby boomers seeking a community that offers it all.  Sarasota, Florida is not longer known as just a “beach” resort, the world has found its “Best Place to Buy.”

Check out the full report:  http://internationalpropertyjournal.com/latest-news/109-best-buys-internationally.html

If you need assistance searching for Sarasota homes for sale, contact the John Allen Team at 941-544-6467 for experienced guidance in all areas of Sarasota including Siesta Key, Casey Key, Longboat Key, Lido Key and downtown Sarasota.

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