Home sales at 7-year high
Despite being in the middle of the slow season, August was an exciting month for property sellers in Venice, with an average price increase of almost 8 percent compared to the previous year. In addition, residential sales were at a seven-year high, according to information provided this week by the Venice Area Board of Realtors
Sales totaled 185 properties last month compared to 148 last year, 96 in 2010, 125 in 2009, 83 in 2008, 123 in 2007 and 112 in 2006.
The average home sales price increased to $187,304, compared to $172,523 last year but still far below the prerecession price of $320,828 of 2006.
The number of homes coming onto the market continues its downward trend, with only 861 properties — a 4.7-month inventory — for sale now compared to 1,235 (8.3 months) a year ago and 3,640 (32.5 months) in 2006. In tandem, the average number of days a home remained unsold was down to 111, compared to 128 a year ago and 143 in 2007, when the economic downturn was accelerating.
“I think the news is more than interesting — it is exciting,” said Brad Tritschler, broker associate, Premier Sotheby’s, 400 Barcelona Ave. “The writing is on the wall: If you have been waiting for the dinner bell to ring, it is ringing now.
“Right now, buyer demand, often called saturation rate, is outpacing the new inventory coming onto the market. In my mind it is still the traditional sales volume; baby boomer retirement and the Canadians remain a strong sector. The new contribution to sales volume is finally seeing locals getting involved in the market.
Property owners in this region have a misconception it is saturated with foreclosures and short sales. Working in Sarasota County and parts of Charlotte and Manatee counties, Tritschler believes it is only 12 percent of total market sales.
The distressed-property volume has peaked, he said, though new short-sale properties will continue to come on the market and will hold some sectors down.