TheresaOnce again, the talking heads are reporting on the demise of the housing market. And once again, they're talking about a national housing market.

Sure, in some markets there’s cause for concern. Interest rates have been volatile lately and supply chain issues have caused shortages and higher prices. But let’s drill down to what’s happening here. 

Perhaps the best indicator of how healthy the market is to take a look at housing starts. After all, big builders aren’t going to invest in land, materials, infrastructure and impact fees if there’s little or no demand. 

In March 2022, the Federal Reserve started raising interest rates and permits started to decline in April. But since then, the market has made a robust comeback, recouping all of the shortfall.

Let’s fast forward to 2023. The data available for the first five months of the year shows the Central Florida market had over 10,000 permits issued — which is pretty amazing when you look at the number of permits pulled as a whole. 

Central Florida has roughly 12 percent of the state’s population, but more than 14 percent of the permits issued statewide were for homes in our market. As a percentage of its population, only Jacksonville had more permits issued. 

We hear a lot of talk about housing affordability in Florida. And yes, compared to states like Mississippi and Alabama it would seem we have an affordability issue. However, U.S. News and World Report ranks Florida 38th in housing affordability while also ranking it among the Top 10 “Best States to Live In.” Sounds like a bargain.

So why is Central Florida an anomaly? It’s actually quite simple; people want to live here. So what it boils down to is this: Don’t listen to the talking heads.