A number of housing markets in Florida are affordable – but not due to a downturn in the market. Home prices and sales in the Sunshine State have been growing at a faster pace than the rest of the nation, says Florida Realtors chief economist Dr. Brad O’Connor.

“It’s always been a pretty affordable place to buy a home – especially if you’re a retiree looking for sunshine and warmth,” O’Connor says.” The median home price in Florida is $298,500, compared with the national median of $289,000. “You won’t be able to buy a beach house for these prices. But there’s a lot more to Florida.”

Why are Florida homes affordable? There are several reasons, including plenty of land and a surprising amount of undeveloped coastline. Most of the state’s higher-priced homes – the ones that come to mind when Northerners consider a Florida retirement – are concentrated in South Florida, where there is a scarcity of land.

Florida homes also tend to be smaller and incomes tend to be lower. Further, the supply of available homes isn’t as tight as in other markets.

“We’re one of the few places (where) they’re building homes. That also helps to relieve prices in our state,” says O’Connor.

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It’s important to note that hurricanes generally don’t impact home prices much.

According to GOBankingRates, the 15 Florida cities with real estate bargains (median prices lower than the state and national medians) that are also desirable based on their high livability scores from AreaVibes are:

  • Timber Pines (median list price of $180,000)
  • Altamonte Springs ($198,000)
  • Coconut Creek ($200,000), North Port ($228,900)
  • Temple Terrace ($231,200)
  • Tavares ($233,450), Whiskey Creek ($253,000)
  • Cape Coral ($256,000)
  • Port Orange ($263,945)
  • Punta Gorda ($269,500)
  • Dunedin ($279,000)
  • Rockledge ($279,945)
  • St. Cloud ($281,995)
  • Lakeland Highlands ($288,950)
  • Venice ($289,000)

Source: Yahoo! Finance (10/10/19) Huddleston, Cameron

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