A report issued by the Florida Association of Realtors on May 27 reports an 18% increase in existing home sales for the month of April—the eighth consecutive month that sales activity increased in the year to year comparison. Even more significant is the statistic that existing condo sales rose 21% in April, a 6.2% increase over condo sales statewide in March. The report, however, is not so positive on the median price of homes which declined by 31% comparing April 2008 to April 2009. Interestingly, Florida median sales prices have outpaced the national drop of 19% reported on May 27 by CNNMoney.com.

Manatee County has held up better than the Statewide average. The median price of a home in Florida is $138,500, in Manatee County, that price is $175,800, based on April sales. Among condos, Manatee County outpaces the Statewide median price by 26%: $142,500 in Manatee as compared to $106,600 for all of Florida.

Manatee mirrors the same 31% decrease in the median price of homes April 2008 compared to April 2009. Industry analysts within the National Association of Realtors credit the numerous discounted sales and foreclosures as the culprits creating the downward distortion of the current national market. I concur with this opinion with regard to Manatee’s depressed prices. But there’s hope yet: What goes down, afterall, must come back up.

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