Sarasota, Florida, may be the most idyllic location in the United States that no one ever talks about. With the reputation as being squarely part of the less dynamic and slower-paced Northern Florida region, as opposed to the Lamborghini and celebrity saturated South Florida corridor, Sarasota enjoys many of the same features that make South Florida one of the most famous destinations on the globe. As a result, Sarasota continues to be one of the nicest places in the country for those looking to purchase a second home or to retire permanently.
Sarasota Still Offers Great Values
Even as South Florida experiences huge runups in home prices, Sarasota housing prices have remained relatively sane and moored to realistic valuations. And while some are calling the current state of Florida real estate, as well as many other locations throughout the country a bubble, there are a few key differences between the current real estate run-up and the one that preceded the 2008 housing crash.
While South Florida locations like Naples and Miami have experienced huge increases in median home values over the last five years, Sarasota home prices have only risen a modest 25 percent. At the same time, local realtors point out that there’s nothing even approaching the irresponsible lending practices that were seen in the lead up to the 2008 financial crash.
On the flipside, however, some analysts are pointing out that the low-interest-rate environment that has prevailed over the last ten years due to the Fed’s expansionary quantitative easing programs are virtually guaranteed to come to an end. The end of historically low-interest rates will mean that housing prices could take a hit in Florida and throughout the rest of the country. This is likely to occur because mortgages will get far more expensive, allowing far fewer people to qualify. At the same time, the resulting dearth of buyers will cause demand to flounder, potentially sending prices into a nosedive.
But Sarasota realtors have stated that this is far less likely to result in a crash in that city due to the prevailing home prices being far less than similar properties in South Florida. All of this paints a picture of Sarasota, with its miles of pristine beaches, no state income tax, and favorable property taxes, being one of the best values remaining for those looking for a great place to retire.