The median price for existing single-family homes in Florida continued to rise in December and home sales in 2005 increased 2 percent over the previous years, according to the Florida Association of Realtors.

The median price for existing single-family homes in Florida continued to rise in December, reaching $247,000 — an increase of 27 percent compared to the statewide median price of $194,000 in December 2004, according to FAR.

In December 2000, the statewide median sales price was $116,200, which is an increase of 112.5 percent over the five-year period, according to FAR records. The median is the midpoint, which is a typical market price where half of the homes sold for more and half for less.

The national median sales price for existing single-family homes was $213,500 in November, which was 13.5 percent higher than November 2004, according to the National Association of Realtors.

In California, the statewide median price in November was $548,400; in Maryland, it was $302,822; in New York, it was $280,000; and in North Carolina, the average resale price was $215,160.

Statewide in Florida, a total of 17,505 homes sold last month, compared with 20,592 homes sold in December 2004, for a drop in the sales pace of 15 percent during the holiday period.

Realtors across the state reported that inventory levels appear to be on the rise following months of tight supply in many markets, according to FAR.

Despite another active hurricane season, Florida’s housing market thrived in 2005, registering a record year in terms of closings and median price for sales of existing single-family homes statewide, FAR said.

By year’s end, Florida came close to reaching the 250,000 mark for annual sales, with a total of 248,565 homes sold — a 2 percent increase over the 242,597 homes sold the year before.

Statewide, the median sales price rose 29 percent to reach $235,100; in 2004, it was $181,900. In 2000, Florida’s median sales price was $115,900, which represents a gain of 102.8 percent over the five-year period, according to FAR records.

Mike Dooley, 2006 president of FAR and a broker with Illustrated Properties in Hobe Sound, said the 2005 existing-home sales data demonstrates the continued strength of Florida’s real estate industry despite local market disruptions caused by three hurricanes striking the state this year.

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Send tips or a Letter to the Editor to janis@inman.com or call (510) 658-9252, ext. 140.

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