Here we are. I've said "we're in the bottom" or "we're near the bottom" for some time now. I am a very positive enthusiastic real estate professional, and I always see things getting better.
Some thoughts about this moment in time. We've come down in Oil prices from in the $145 barrel range, down to $126 give or take. The dollar has been very weak. Who knows which way things will go.
This fall Floridians will vote on transferring the school taxes from the property tax bills to a general staewide sales tax increase (1-2%). A local study had our area having about 30-40% of our sales taxes paid by people OUTSIDE our area. If the state as a whole has 30-40% of sales taxes paid by Snowbirds/Europeans/South Americans/etc...this is a great development for Florida.
Our problem, and I believe part of the reason our prices have slid as far as they have, is because at the same time that property values were escalating, we had 2004 (hurricane Charley), and who can forget 2005 (we had our share of storms EXCLUDING Katrina), our local governments saw the rampant prosperity and expanded and "cashed in" too. The result? The perfect storm of real estate.
We are starting to see and hear optimism in our market. Inventory for a search I created to track things in 2007, peaked at 2924 listings (2/25/08) and today (7/23/08) is at 2600 listings (over an 11% reduction). When optimism comes back, the bottom has passed (the worst attitudes are over).
Sarasota is also looking to bring the Boston Red Sox to town for spring training. If that happens, alot of folks in the Northeast that didn't know or care about Sarasota, WILL. This is a GREAT possibility for a brighter future in our area.
THE BOTTOM LINE...If you know someone that wants to buy...the next few months will be the ticket!!