CAPE CORAL, Fla. — Realtors in Southwest Florida are looking back at the real estate market to understand what’s going on today. Experts are pointing to the 2008 market crash to explain today’s hectic industry.
Realtor Adrian Waring told Fox 4 he can’t even believe a Cape Coral home he’s selling is going for $325,000. It needs an entire interior makeover. He says back in 2003 before the market crash, it sold for a quarter of that amount, and then the prices went up again.
Waring has worked in real estate for more than 20 years. He said the price hikes weren’t the only similarity he noticed between the housing boom in the early 2000’s and now.
“When the virus started early last year, there was some level of panic from individuals I know, like do I need to sell my house?” he said.
Many of them did. But now, looking at the price jumps, they’re wishing they hadn’t.
Waring said that panic in their voices also sounded familiar. Right around 2003 when the market was hot, builders had that same anxious feeling. But, by 2008 they realized they had built more than they could sell.
“From the time the market kind of died from ’09 to 2018, nobody built any houses. It didn’t make any sense to build,” he said.
He says now everyone in the market is paying for it. Waring says there’s extremely low inventory and the cost for lumber has jumped by 80 percent since last year.
In Cape Coral, there were close to 3,000 homes for sale in April 2019. Today, there’s 392 listed.
“For us to have a normal market, we need to have about a 500 percent automatic increase in property overnight, and that’ll take us up to about the 12 or 15 hundred range, even though it should be higher than that,” he said. “I don’t think it will fix itself anytime soon.”
He says if contractors aren’t able to build more, and fast, the real estate market could stay like this at least for another year, if not many more.