September saw tremendous damage to much of the Southwest Florida region due to the landfall of Hurricane Ian. However, despite the immense devastation to many regions, there is hope for those looking to move to Florida or Floridians needing to sell their homes.
According to Economist Dr. O'Connor, the impacts of Ian began before the Category 4 hurricane made landfall in Florida. Most of this was due to fear and concerns leading to the landfall, causing a slowdown in Real Estate activity. This slowdown included many areas in Florida, even those not projected to be impacted by the storm. Overall, this activity was expected, as people were preparing for impact, pushing back appointments and plans and waiting it out to see what might happen. People also may have pulled their homes off the market temporarily so that they could focus on hurricane preparations. This slowdown was, of course, preceded by another slowdown immediately following the hurricane in the aftermath of Ian's landfall.
Part of the reason why the year-over-year sales this fall have been on the decline is the result of an unusual uptick in sales toward the end of the year during 2020 and 2021, likely due to the pandemic and subsequent economic shifts. So while the numbers are lower compared to the previous two years, the numbers are much more aligned with average home sales in 2018 and 2019. This suggests more of a correction from the above-average sales rather than a decline.
Inventory is up in many Southwest Florida areas for single-family homes and condo units. Overall, the median sale price in Florida is up by 13.8%, but we also know all too well from Faris Team's monthly market updates that in some areas in Southwest Florida, the average sale price is up by nearly 20%. This means that sellers continue to see gains in property value, so there is plenty of reason for buyers to invest in Florida.
While plenty of speculation and fear-fuelled headlines suggest that the Florida Real Estate market will take a hit due to the hurricane's landfall, history has proven that this may not be the case. The storm impact will likely carry over into October market stats since Ian made landfall toward the end of the month. While it is undeniable that Ian brought devastation to several Southwest Florida communities, and the media rightfully highlighted these communities as the stories of the towns that were impacted, these localized areas experiencing severe damage are unlikely to affect the Real Estate market as a whole.
If we take a look at previous hurricanes with similar impacts, such as Hurricane Irma in 2017, the Real Estate market in Florida made a quick recovery. Similar to hurricane Ian, there was great concern that Irma would deter buyers from purchasing in Florida due to hurricane potential. This wasn't the case, as, beyond 2017, the Real Estate market in Florida continued to thrive. This is hopeful for people in Florida looking to move and for those who are looking to purchase in Southwest Florida.
Whether you are a homeowner in Southwest Florida looking to sell or considering purchasing in Florida in the near future, it's important to speak to local Real Estate experts, who can give you the Professional Guidance you need to make the best decisions for your family. We know all too well that people may need to move regardless of current conditions, and Faris Team's Professional, Loving, Local Realtors® live where you live and are ready to go full out for you®. While the headlines may paint a bleak picture of the market, it's important to speak to the experts you trust to help you make the best decisions regarding your greatest asset. If you have any questions about how Hurricane Ian may impact your Real Estate goals, book an appointment with one of our Realtors® today.
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