Short supply pushes Tampa home prices higher

Power House: Tampa
Power House: Tampa   

Tampa area home prices are soaring, and buyers don't seem particularly put off. This Florida market, which was particularly hard-hit during the foreclosure crisis, still has an outsize share of distressed properties, but recovery has been steady.

The median price of a Tampa home sold in May jumped 12.4 percent from a year ago to $204,000 in May, according to the Greater Tampa Association of Realtors (GTAR). Sales of single family homes rose 14.7 percent, and sales of condominiums rose 2 percent from a year ago.

Tampa, Florida
Alex Baxter | Getty Images
Tampa, Florida

As with the rest of the nation, supply of homes for sale in Tampa is still tight. The number of new listings did increase, but given the higher sales pace, inventory is down nearly 5 percent from a year ago.

"The new single family home for‐sale listings increased slightly year‐over‐year, a good indication that homeowners have more confidence about listing their homes," said Barbara Jordan, 2015 president of GTAR.

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The inventory represents less than a four-month supply, which means prices will continue to push higher. More buyers are coming back to the market as both the local and national economies improve.

While the number of properties with a foreclosure filing was 9 percent lower in May than a year ago, there are still over 5,000 Tampa-area homes in some stage of foreclosure, according to RealtyTrac. The Florida judicial process has been slow to work through the huge backlog of distressed homes, but it has been ramping up the process in the past year.