Existing homes for sale in the Orlando area flew off the shelves in March, which saw a more than 25 percent increase in the number of transactions compared to March of 2014. The area’s overall median price (all sales types and all home types combined) increased more than 10 percent in that same March-to-March comparison.
The median price for March is the highest since October 2008, while the number of sales is the highest since June 2010.
Orlando Regional REALTOR® Association President Sharon Voss, Watson Realty Corp, attributes the leap in sales to simple factors. "The current low interest rate, recent increases in available inventory, and consumer confidence in the health of Orlando’s economy and housing market are all contributing to the current sales activity," says Voss. "Plus, the reasonable rate of median price growth indicates that prices are not going to be falling, so many buyers feel the time is right."
The overall median price (all sales types and all home types combined) for the month of March 2015 is $177,500, a 10.94 percent increase compared to the $160,000 median price in March 2014. The year-to-year median price comparison has increased for 44 consecutive months and is now 53.68 percent higher than the $115,500 recorded in July 2011.
Orlando’s median home price also experienced a nice increase compared to last month; the March 2015 median price is 7.64 percent higher than the February 2015 median price of $164,900.
In addition to the overall median price increase, each individual sale type and home type all experienced a year-to-year median price increase in March. Foreclosures led the way with an 18.58 percent jump, while the median price of normal sales increased 6.28 percent and short sales increased 7.77 percent.
The median price of single-family homes increased 8.33 percent when compared to March of last year, and the median price of condos increased 1.88 percent.
Members of ORRA participated in the sale of 3,067 homes (all home types and all sale types combined) that closed in March 2015, an increase of 25.95 percent compared to March 2014 and an increase of 24.83 percent compared to February 2015.
Traditional sales in Orlando increased by 27.14 percent when compared to March 2014. Closings of short sales decreased by 33.17 percent while closings of foreclosures increased 42.74 percent.
Single-family home sales increased 29.94 percent in March 2015 compared to March 2014, while condo sales increased 8.59 percent.
Homes of all types spent an average of 79 days on the market before coming under contract in March 2015, and the average home sold for 96.27 percent of its listing price. In March 2014 those numbers were 76 days and 96.83 percent, respectively.
The average interest rate paid by Orlando homebuyers in March decreased to 3.78 percent. This month last year, homebuyers paid an average interest rate of 3.80.
Pending sales – those under contract and awaiting closing – are currently at 6,715. The number of pending sales in March 2015 is 10.82 percent lower than it was in March 2014 (7,530) and 0.70 percent higher than it was in February 2015 (6,668).
Normal properties made up 50.35 percent of pending sales in March 2015. Short sales accounted for 24.42 percent of pendings, while bank-owned properties accounted for 25.23 percent.
The number of existing homes (all types combined) that were available for purchase in March is 11.47 percent above that of March 2014 and now rests at 11,529. Inventory increased in number by 83 properties over last month.
The inventory of single-family homes is up by up by 7.28 percent when compared to March of 2014, while condo inventory is up by 23.92 percent. The inventory of duplexes, townhomes, and villas is up by 29.65 percent.
Current inventory combined with the current pace of sales created a 3.76-month supply of homes in Orlando for March. There was a 4.25-month supply in March 2014 and a 4.66-month supply last month.
The March affordability index is 177.87 percent, a decrease from February’s index of 190.83. (An affordability index of 99 percent means that buyers earning the state-reported median income are 1 percent short of the income necessary to purchase a median-priced home. Conversely, an affordability index that is over 100 means that median-income earners make more than is necessary to qualify for a median-priced home.)
Buyers who earn the reported median income of $56,354 can qualify to purchase one of 5,587 homes in Orange and Seminole counties currently listed in the local multiple listing service for $315,275 or less.
First-time homebuyer affordability in March decreased to 126.49 percent from last month’s 135.70 percent. First-time buyers who earn the reported median income of $38,321 can qualify to purchase one of the 3,267 homes in Orange and Seminole counties currently listed in the local multiple listing service for $190,838 or less.
Condos and Town Homes/Duplexes/Villas
The sales of condos in the Orlando area were up 8.59 percent in March, with 354 sales recorded in March 2015 compared to 326 in March 2014.
Orlando homebuyers purchased 287 duplexes, town homes, and villas in March 2015, which is 18.60 percent more than in March 2014.
Sales of existing homes within the entire Orlando MSA (Lake, Orange, Osceola, and Seminole counties) in March were up by 24.25 percent when compared to March of 2014. Year to date, sales are up 19.46 percent in the MSA.
Each individual county’s monthly sales comparisons are as follows:
•Lake: 15.10 percent above March 2014;
•Orange: 29.49 percent above March 2014;
•Osceola: 24.42 percent above March 2014; and
•Seminole: 19.93 percent above March 2014.
This representation is based in whole or in part on data supplied by the Orlando Regional REALTOR® Association and the My Florida Regional Multiple Listing Service. Neither the association nor MFRMLS guarantees or is in any way responsible for its accuracy. Data maintained by the association or MFRMLS may not reflect all real estate activity in the market. Due to late closings, an adjustment is necessary to record those closings posted after our reporting date.