Has the Florida real estate market stabilized?  Has even the Tampa Bay real estate market stabilized?  The answer is maybe, but probably not.  Nationally the media is saying the recession has bottomed out and we are beginning a recovery.  That is very good news.  The not so good news is that Florida and the Tampa Bay area were hit so hard, especially by the housing slump, that it may take longer for the real estate market in the area to bottom out and thus begin a recovery.

The Florida economic recovery may be longer because layoffs are continuing.  There are 15% more families receiving welfare assistance in Florida than were a year ago, according to the St. Petersburg Times.  Florida's unemployment rate is over 11% compared to the national average of 9.5%.  With all this bad news, there is good news since the number of houses sold in June was up for the first time in many, many months.

As the national recession abates, the Florida recovery will follow, eventually.  Stabilized house prices are a very good sign that the Tampa Bay real estate market may be improving as reported by the Florida Association of Realtors, but one month does not a trend make.  Many experts are predicting that even in Florida the real estate market will stabilize by the end of the year.  We certainly hope so.