North Florida housing market showing signs of moderation, industry expert says

That could be good news in the near future for home buyers, but it might mean little for people who rent

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – For months, News4JAX viewers have been sounding off on the skyrocketing costs of rent and the steep prices to purchase a home.

The median sales price for a home in Northeast Florida during the month of February was more than $351,000. That’s over 20% higher than the price of a home in the same area a year ago.

A lack of housing inventory and increased demand continue to fuel the market, but according to industry experts, the North Florida market is showing signs of moderation.

RELATED: I-TEAM: Breaking down increases in Jacksonville rents by ZIP code | ‘Affordability crisis’ forcing more Jacksonville-area residents out of rental homes | I-TEAM: Don’t be the next victim of a rental rip-off

Mark Rosener is president of the Northeast Florida Association of Realtors.

“Part of it is, you know, the per sale market as well. I mean, we’ve seen about a 22% increase in the median price in the past 12 months, year over year. Thankfully, we see that moderating a bit,” Rosener said. “Since November, the median prices just kind of fluctuated 2 or 3% either way. So hopefully, we’re beginning to see some of those indicators moderate a little bit.”

Rosener said that hopefully, in the near future, it will become a little easier for home buyers to find a home when more inventory comes onto the market in the month of April.

But unfortunately, for families who are renting, the cost of rent isn’t expected to go down.

″It’s a classic supply and demand,” Rosener said. “The demand is high, and the supply is restricted. And the market, you know, will dictate those kinds of increases.”

News4JAX has learned that rent remains on the rise in Northeast Florida partly because of a large number of out-of-state multibillion dollar corporations that have been steadily purchasing homes and apartment complexes sometimes sight unseen.

Jacksonville’s housing market is even gaining national attention. One local couple was who was recently featured on 60 Minutes said their monthly rent was hiked from $1,000 to $1,300.

In January, a News4JAX employee had her rent raised by nearly $400 a month.

Industry experts say corporate landlords began positioning themselves financially during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“They’re seeing the upside. They see a really advantageous cash flow currently with rents where they are and have values where they are. But they also see an upside over time in terms of appreciation of that asset,” Rosener said. “So, in the end, that’s kind of a good thing. If the investors were selling out and getting out of town, we’d be more worried about that.”

We continue to hear from viewers about 30-40% increases in their rent. Jacksonville is now ranked nationally along with Austin, Texas, and Phoenix, Arizona, as metropolitan areas with the highest rent, according to the real estate company Redfin.

About the Author:

Tarik anchors the 4, 5:30 and 6:30 p.m. weekday newscasts and reports with the I-TEAM.