This is a popular holiday destination for both U.S. and foreign tourists, attracted by Florida’s sub-tropical climate. Every year, the vast Suncoast area – with a local population of one million – receives over four million visitors, generating direct sales for 2 billion USD and a strong demand for accommodation.
Moreover, the local economy is truly far-reaching: the main growing industries in the metropolitan area include financial and production services, medical technologies, IT, and marine sciences. Pinellas County is national leader in the production of such items as computers, office equipment and electronic components. Its numerous hospitals and research centres make it a strategic location for companies operating in the medical technology sector: over half of Florida’s High Tech companies are based in Pinellas County. Similarly, many firms in the IT industry are concentrated in this region, and St Petersburg is a hub of small and medium enterprises dealing in software and web development.
In 2013, the value of property in Pinellas County increased by 13.8% over the previous year, and is expected to rise further in 2014; the average value of a home is 148,500 USD, while the average rent is around 1,150 USD per month. 6,717 homes were foreclosed in 2013, and 3,148 in the first semester of 2014. Although these figures have fallen since 2012, they still represent an important aspect of a foreclosure-rich market.
- Total Auctions
- Third Party
- Third Party Percentage
THE FORECLOSURE PROPERTY MARKET
This graph illustrates the monthly trend of property sold at auction compared with that sold to third parties; during 2014, the average ratio was 20%, with a minimum of 14% in March and a maximum of 27% in August.
During the year a total of 4,727 homes were sold at auction, of which only 967 to third parties, and 3,760 to banks.
This difference is often due to declarations of nullity based on a defect of form; or to the fact that – because this is a growing market – banks are more interested in ownership of the property, in view of the likelihood of its value increasing over a short period of time.