Tampa housing market increasing as expected

(Tampa, FL – April 26, 2012) The Tampa housing market is increasing in housing activity as expected, according to a recent report by Metrostudy, a national housing data and consulting firm that maintains the most extensive primary database on residential construction in the US housing market.

The Tampa MSA gained 20,200 jobs according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, placing Tampa Bay in the top 20 in the nation for job creation. The unemployment rate decreased to 8.9 % NSA, but remained well above the national average of 8.2%. “It is highly likely we’ll continue to see a local unemployment rate higher than the national average over the next year or two. With a workforce of 1.3 million, the Tampa MSA would need to see the number of unemployed workers drop under 91,000 to report a local unemployment rate under 7%. We’re currently at about 116,500 unemployed workers,” said Tony Polito, director of Metrostudy’s Tampa Region.

During 1Q12, 1,040 single family units were started, an increase of 26.8% compared to 1Q11. The annual starts pace increased to 4,201 annual starts, 7.6% higher than last year’s rate. “We expect new starts to be between 5 and 15% higher than 2011 by the end of 2012,” said Polito.

Closings totaled 968 units in 1Q12, 1.8% higher than 1Q11. Annual closings stood at 4,031, which was 10.6% lower than the annual rate at this time last year.

Finished vacant inventory decreased to 1,325 units, down 1.0% compared to 1Q11, and representing a 3.9-month supply. This is up from 3.6 months during 1Q11. “This negative trend and the high months of supply requires a continued focused approach to pricing existing finished vacant units as well as new product,” said Polito.

“Metrostudy forecasted an increase in new home starts for 2012 in a range between 4,200 and 4,600 new units. The current annual start pace of 4,201 is inline with our expectation for the Tampa Bay market. Continued job growth, qualifying for a low mortgage rate, and consumer confidence will all play a part going forward,” said Polito.

For information contact:
tony polito @ 813.888.5151 x811
email tpolito@metrostudy.com

About Metrostudy
Metrostudy is the leading provider of primary and secondary market information to the housing industry and related industries nationwide. In addition to providing its own primary housing data for approximately 70% of the United States housing market, the company is recognized for its consulting expertise regarding real estate development, marketing and economic issues, and is a key source of research studies evaluating the marketability of residential and commercial real estate projects. Services are offered through an extensive network of offices located in major metropolitan areas throughout the U.S. For more information, visit www.metrostudy.com.