Fla. 2009 Profile of Homebuyers and Sellers

In real estate on December 6, 2009 at 7:16 pm

ORLANDO, Fla. – Dec. 4, 2009 – The real estate market constantly evolves, and Realtors must continually have a clear picture of today’s homebuyers and sellers. The “2009 Profile of Homebuyers and Sellers, Florida Report” describes the characteristics and motivations of the state’s recent homebuyers and sellers.

The complete 211-page report, compiled by the National Association of Realtors, is available on the research page of at:


Characteristics of homebuyers

• Forty-one percent of recent homebuyers were first-timers, compared to 47 percent nationwide.
• The typical first-time homebuyer was 31 years old, while the typical repeat buyer was 54 years old. Nationwide, first-time buyers were typically 30 and repeat buyers were typically 48 years old.
• The 2008 median household income of buyers was $71,100 – lower than the median income of buyers nationwide at $73,100.
• The median income was $59,300 for first-time buyers and $83,300 for repeat buyers.
• Single females made up 18 percent of recent homebuyers, and single males made up 11 percent. Nationwide, 21 percent were single females, and 10 percent were single males.
• For 29 percent of buyers, a desire to own a home was the primary reason for the home purchase.

Characteristics of homes purchased

• New home purchases dropped to their lowest level in eight years nationwide –18 percent of all recent home purchases. But in Florida, new homes made up 26 percent of purchases.
• The typical home purchased was 1,850 square feet in size and built in 2000.
• Seventy-eight percent of homebuyers purchased a detached single-family home.
• The median price of a Florida home purchased was $176,500, compared to $185,000 nationwide.
• Three in four buyers (77 percent) considered commuting costs as “very” or “somewhat” important.

The home search process

• More than one-third of homebuyers started their home search process by looking online for listings.
• Seventy-five percent of buyers used the Internet to search for homes.
• Buyers had a high opinion of real estate agents, with 81 percent of those who used an agent saying they received very useful information.
• The typical homebuyer searched for 12 weeks and viewed 15 homes, compared to 12 weeks and 12 homes nationwide.

Homebuying and real estate professionals

• Sixty-seven percent of buyers purchased their home through a real estate agent or broker.
• Sixteen percent of buyers purchased a home in foreclosure. Nationally, 10 percent of buyers purchased a home in foreclosure.
• Thirty-nine percent of buyers found their agent through a referral from a friend or family member.
• Sixty-four percent of buyers would definitely use their real estate again or recommend the same agent to others.

Financing the home purchase

• Florida had more cash sales, with 81 percent of buyers financing their recent home purchase. Nationwide, 92 percent financed their recent home purchase.
• The typical buyer financed 93 percent of the home purchase price.
• Nearly half (45 percent) of homebuyers reported they made some sacrifices to buy the home, such as reducing spending on luxury items, entertainment or clothing.
• Thirty-one percent of first-time buyers reported their mortgage application and approval process was “somewhat” more difficult than they expected, and about one-in-ten reported it was “much more” difficult than expected.

Home sellers and their selling experience

• Real estate agents assisted 85 percent of sellers in Florida, the same percentage nationally.
• Recent sellers typically sold their homes for 93 percent of the listing price, and 65 percent reported they reduced the asking price at least once. Among all sellers nationally, sellers typically sold their homes for 95 percent of the listing price, and 60 percent reported they reduced the asking price at least once.
• Forty-two percent of sellers offered incentives to attract buyers, most often assistance with home warranty policies and closing costs.

Home selling and real estate professionals

• Thirty-four percent of sellers who used a real estate agent found their agents through a referral by friends or family, and 24 percent used the agent they worked with previously to buy or sell a home.
• Eighty-six percent of sellers reported that their home was listed or advertised on the Internet.
• Among recent sellers who used an agent, 84 percent reported they would definitely (57 percent) or probably (27 percent) use that real estate agent again or recommend that person to others.

For-Sale-by-Owner (FSBO) sellers

• FSBOs made up 10 percent of Florida sales, which is slightly less than the national rate of 11 percent.
• Almost half of the FSBO sellers (40 percent) knew the buyer prior to the home sale.
• If a seller wasn’t dealing with a buyer he already knew, the primary reason (62 percent) for going FSBO is that the seller did not want to pay a fee or commission.
• Over half of FSBO sellers took no action to market their home, and 58 percent did not offer any incentives to attract buyers.
• Fifteen percent of FSBO sellers reported that completing a transaction within their planned timeframe was the hardest part of selling their home.

Reprinted with permission | © 2009 Florida Realtors®


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