NewsPrice of Paradise


Is your home building equity? Here's how to know if you should cash in and sell

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Posted at 5:32 AM, Mar 30, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-30 08:07:37-04

TAMPA, Fla — Homeowners are potentially in a cushy spot when it comes to how much they paid for their house and how much it’s worth right now in the Tampa Bay area. The housing market continues to soar but is it the right time to sell?

“I always say to people that Tampa is going through its renaissance,” said Brian Frey, a local realtor for Pineywoods Realty.

If you want your slice of paradise you’re going to have to shell out more now than you would have just a few years ago.

“The growth downtown, and the surrounding areas especially in the urban corridor has been explosive — it’s something Tampa has probably never seen,” Frey said “Tampa is a hot market because there are a lot of people moving here. We have tech industry moving here, big pharma is moving here and it’s funny because it seems like our little big town which was super affordable at some point has instantly become almost not affordable.”

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If you’re already in a home, you’ve probably closely watched its equity go up. Frey said while home sales have slowed down, prices have not gone down.

“I don’t know where the end is if there is an end,” he said. “I’m sure we will level off at some point but I don’t know. I don’t know because I don’t have a crystal ball exactly when that’s going to be.”

That equity may have you thinking about selling your house and getting into something bigger and better. But, don’t jump on that just yet. Frey said it depends on when you bought your home.

“The last three years the prices have risen so much, if you purchased before then you’re going to have a considerable amount of equity in your home,” he said.

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He also said it will depend on your location. For example, Seminole Heights is a place where housing prices were really low for a long time.

He also said if you’ve re-financed your home multiple times over the years, you likely have a lot less equity now because you owe more than you paid. If you sell now, you may still have a sizable down payment to offer on the next home but it may be comparable to the house you’re in now or you may have a higher payment.

“It goes back to the fact that now you’re paying a lot more for that house, that dream home that you’ve always wanted so you’re likely, at times, if you don’t have a lot of cash on hand using that equity to buy down,” he said.

Frey adds the most important thing you need if you are going to sell your home and look for a new one — a realtor that is going to really fight for you.


As Tampa Bay continues to attract new residents and businesses, the impact of living in paradise comes at a cost for all of us— from the increasing cost of housing and infrastructure to utilities and insurance. ABC Action News is committed to helping you and your family make the most of your money and navigate through the Price of Paradise.