Are current artificial housing prices and rent prices a problem?

Your Questions Answered

At Ashlar, I firmly b that an educated home buyer or seller is best equipped to make their own decisions. That’s why I take time out of my day each and every day to answer someone’s real estate question.  And, when I think the answer can be useful to you as well, I share it here.  So without further ado:


Do you believe the current artificial housing prices and rent prices are a problem?

The current market is a result of open market pricing and supply and demand. It’s not artificial by any stretch of the imagination. Simply, there are more people that want to live here than there are homes, and those people find the increasing price of what is available acceptable and are willing to pay it.

Supply dropped due to Covid. Period. If you look at the number of homes going up for sale March / April it dropped by half. Demand dropped as well but came back around June 2020. Everything else including rent increase has been a knock on effect from that lower supply.

Only two ways to correct it. Either wait for forces to balance out (they usually will though short term there will be acute pain) or via regulation such as rent and price controls. Which, well, those sorts of things wouldn’t fly even in St Pete.

Personally I don’t believe housing prices are as big a problem as most people can buy something if they choose to. $6000-$15000 will buy you a home, which is attainable savings for most. Will that be a 3,000 square foot home on a golf course? No, but it will be something decent.

Rents though are more of a problem, especially in fully developed areas such as Pinellas County where there just a lot of land to add additional megaplexes. Again only way to help / control that is with assistance and regulation but I just don’t see that happening anytime soon. More likely is that demand will continue to ease and things will balance after a while at a new normal.

There is a market shift happening now (check out my stats videos for more details),

But to paraphrase, we’ve had more homes going up for sale than have sold three months in a row. That’s a first in a looong time. But remember, the last shift took about 10-12 months to show up on everyone’s radar. Real estate is sloooow and people are usually behind the trend.

Best outcome honestly is prices hold here at a new normal for a very long time. Going up much more is going to put a lot more people out of range, while things going down has the potential to spiral into economic catastrophe which would take years to recover from.

Prices going down a bit wouldn’t be too bad but people hoping for another crash are nuts. It was 4-6 years of economic pain after the last one.

Kyle Sasser

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