In a recent article, Dave Ramsey reported some key findings on the housing market in Florida, with predictions on what it’ll look like this year. Whether you’re thinking about buying a home in The Sunshine State or you’re getting ready to sell, it’s important to be aware of these changes. That way, you can use your best judgment before making any major decisions.
With that in mind, here’s what the Florida housing market will look like in 2024, according to Ramsey.
What the Numbers Say
Ramsey’s research shows that housing prices in Florida have gone up, especially when comparing the fourth quarters of 2022 and 2023, respectively.
At the end of 2022, the median sales price of a Florida home was $401,990. One year later, it was $410,000 — a 2% increase.
During that same period, the number of active listings on the Florida market also increased from 68,813 to 74,703 — or by 8.6%. This indicates more sellers are on the market. However, the number of closed sales dropped from 20,837 to 19,729.
Then, there’s the typical mortgage interest rates. In the article, Ramsey only reported on the average 15-year fixed-rate mortgage. From 2022 to 2023, there was a slight increase, from 6.36% to 7.03%.
Ramsey also found that the Florida housing market varies based on location. In Orlando, Tampa and Jacksonville, the median listing price was $412,000 or above, which is higher than the state’s median sales price. In each of these cities, there’s been a slight increase in home prices.
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There’s Not Enough Inventory
The cost of housing fluctuates with available inventory and, right now, there’s simply not enough. But with limited inventory comes higher prices.
Ramsey spoke with Ken H. Johnson, an associate dean at Florida Atlantic University’s College of Business, about whether or not this will change this year. According to Johnson, Florida needs at least 200,000 new homes each year to keep up with demand. Instead, the state only gets about a 10th of that.
Both Buyers and Sellers May Be In for a Wait
It’s no secret that the cost of real estate has gone up over the years. But what this means for Florida buyers and sellers remains to be seen.
Brad O’Connor, the chief economist at Florida Realtors, told Ramsey that the available inventory is slowly increasing, which has slowed price growth. However, both sellers and buyers are currently waiting to see what happens with mortgage rates.
Ramsey added that the wait to see what happens with interest rates has put everybody at a standstill. Buyers don’t want to get saddled with an exorbitant rate, while sellers don’t want to sell their home only to find themselves in the same situation.
Interest Rates May Be Dropping Soon
Interest rates have increased significantly over the past couple of years, but they may be in for a decline in 2024, said Ramsey. This was supported by Lawrence Yun, the chief economist at National Association of Realtors (NAR).
According to Yun, it’s likely that rates have already peaked. Now, it’s a matter of when they’re going to start dropping — and by how much.
Right now, the average interest rate on a 30-year fixed-rate loan is around 7.5%. NAR’s research predicts that the rate will drop to 6.3% by the end of the year. Even a 1% decrease could put more buyers or sellers on the market.
A Florida Housing Market Crash Is Unlikely
While many people are worried about a housing market crash this year, Ramsey said it’s unlikely. In fact, Florida homes might actually increase in cost, which is good news for sellers.
NAR even predicted that home values across the U.S. will increase by 2.6% this year. Freddie Mac foretold a smaller increase of just 0.8%.
Is 2024 the Year To Buy or Sell a Home in Florida?
With all of these numbers and potential changes on the horizon, many people are wondering if 2024 is a good year to buy or sell property. While it’s good to know what’s going on in the market, your decision shouldn’t be solely based on the current or predicted trends.
As Ramsey pointed out, you should make your decision based on your individual circumstances and finances. For buyers, this means having no debt, three to six months’ worth of money for emergencies and a down payment of at least 5% to 10%. For sellers, it means considering the cost of moving and making sure doing so aligns with any short- and long-term financial goals.
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This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: Dave Ramsey: Here’s What the Florida Housing Market Will Look Like in 2024