NewsPrice of Paradise


Study ranks Lakeland top 10 area with most available homes for sale

Posted at 7:37 PM, Feb 08, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-08 19:46:24-05

LAKELAND, Fla. — A new report found Lakeland has more available houses for sale than many other parts of the country, but it’s far from a buyer's market.

“I’ve never seen it like this in all the 22 years I've been doing this,” said Realtor Jeanna Jackson.

Jackson said homes are selling like hotcakes in Lakeland.

“There are people lined up out the doors. People waiting on the street as if you were at the yard sale. You get multiple offers. You get back-to-back showings,” she said.

Jackson told ABC Action News because of a surge in buyers, sellers can get top dollar for their homes.

“The agent told us that the seller wanted $25,000 over the asking price so we did bid over that and we got it,” said Lana Burke.

Burke purchased a three bedroom, two bath home in August which she is using as an Airbnb. “The day it hit the market we got it under contract,” Burke said.

Home prices rose nearly 30% nationwide since 2019. Meanwhile, inventory of homes for sale, reached record lows in the last couple of years.

A recent study by the National Association of REALTORS looks at this “double trouble” of the housing market happening across the country.

“These “two troubles” affect the ability to find a home, to purchase a home. We see that there are not available homes compared to 2019,” explained Nadia Evangelou, senior economist and director of forecasting for National Association of REALTORS.

The study compared the number of affordable listings among the 100 largest metro areas and identified the areas with the most available homes for sale relative to the household population by income level.

Lakeland ranked top 10 in the country with the most inventory of homes for households earning $150,000 to $499,999.

“There is one listing for every 22 households which is a very good ratio,” Evangelou said. Compared to Tampa where there is one listing for every 42 households.

This translates to more options for homebuyers in Lakeland. Realtors believe having more opportunities to build plays a role.

“I think there are more options in Lakeland because we have more land and not just Lakeland but Polk County. We have more land that you can choose a custom builder,” said Jackson.

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.