Industry News

Real estate gains flourish in Florida

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Florida's real estate market continued to improve in September, as existing-home sales and the median home price both posted hefty gains, according to the Florida Association of Realtors. Statewide, a total of 20,368 homes changed hands last month, compared with 15,272 home sales that closed in September 2004, which marks a 33 percent increase. However, resales activity during September 2004 reflected the impact of the historic 2004 hurricane season; therefore, the percentage change found in comparing closed sales from September a year ago to last month's resales may not mirror true market activity. "Home-sale closings were clearly affected by the four hurricanes that struck Florida in August and September last year," said 2005 FAR President Frank Kowalski. "Closings generally occur 30 to 90 days after sales contracts are written. And since most insurers do not write homeowners' policies when a hurricane threatens, many buyers repeatedly were unable to obtain coverage, which delaye...