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Welcome to the premier resource for all real estate information and services in the Tampa Bay area. We hope you enjoy your visit and explore everything our website has to offer, including Pinellas, Hillsborough, & Pasco county real estate listings, information for homebuyers and sellers, and more About Us, your professional Tampa Bay area Realtors.  You can also read what our past clients have to say about us on our Testimonials page.

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               Scott & Marie Tomlinson
               Realty Executives Suncoast
               3090 Charles Ave.
               Clearwater, FL 33761
               Phone: 727-771-3609
               Email: tomlinsonteam1@gmail.com

Testimonials Page

I can’t even begin to express the thanks I owe to Marie and Scott. I set out on the quest to find my own home by myself but from day one I never felt alone with them on my side. They shared all the information and then some to help guide me along the way and checked in with me during and after the buying process to ensure everything was going smoothly. If I had a question they were always there with an answer or took the time to find the answer. The process went very well and I know it was mainly because they were there doing the work that needed to be done. I felt like they were family by the end of this process and am grateful my lender connected me with them. Thank you for turning my dream into a reality, Marie and Scott! Sarah Whitney
“Our experience in working with the Tomlinson’s on our home sale has been like nothing we’ve experienced! We met the Tomlinson team 3 years ago when referred to them through our previous realtor in a different state. We’ve worked with Scott and Marie both on a home purchase, and on the sale of our home. The recent selling of our home was during a very stressful period in our lives – I took a job 8 states and 2 time zones away, while my wife and kids had to stay behind, get our home sold, and get moved to our new home. We were under tremendous pressure during this transition……….but the home-sale part of our move was truly the easiest step in our relocation process. Kudos Tomlinson team!!!!!! The process was very strategic, well thought-through, and planned methodically. And it worked – our home closed in less than 90 days, far exceeding our expectations! The Tomlinson’s bring a team-oriented nature of doing business – they use their expertise to set a course forward, and helped us in making the right decision. But at the same time, they listen to us – they hear what our ideas are, and what we have to say – and as a TEAM, we make the best decision to move forward. They know the market, and how it ticks. They know the region, and who are the best buyers for what particular area. They responded to phone calls, immediately. They responded to my emails. They responded to my texts. Immediate response! In our experience, and this is our 3rd cross-country sell-home-and-relocate scenario, most realtors just want to get the transaction done. Even when the final result is not in the best interest of the seller. There is no TEAM – there is no strategy – there has truly been no one who’s goal was to look out for our own best interest. Until we met the Tomlinson team! I would highly suggest that anyone looking to sell their home to work with the Tomlinson Team. You WILL NOT BE let down!” The Friess’s Denver, CO
Our realtor in the DC area referred us to the Tomlinson team when we began planning our move to the Tampa metro area in June 2013. Scott and Marie listened to our hopes for a future home and quickly helped us to zone in on neighborhoods and communities that aligned with our "must have" list. When we were in town the first time, Scott arranged his schedule to drive us all around and he provided so many insights about the Westchase, Palm Harbor and Safety Harbor areas. He alerted us to concerns in houses that we didn't see and he continuously challenged us to think about the "must have" list to ensure we made the right decision for our family. For several months, Scott kept us informed about openings in a number of ways -- text, phone, email and even FaceTime. That kind of accessibility when you are working with a realtor in another state is so reassuring. We felt we had the highest level of service even though we were hundreds of miles away. One Sunday night, we called and said, "We're coming" to look at a house the next day -- Scott dropped everything to set up the appointment for a walk through of our dream house. That night, he and Marie led us through the purchase offer process and they negotiated the curveballs of the process in a strategic way so that within a few weeks, we closed on our dream home! A year later, we're still living the dream in our beautiful home with the perfect view near great schools and surrounded by awesome neighbors! We'd highly recommend the Tomlinson Team to anyone, but especially to families who are moving to Pinellas, Pasco or Hillsborough Counties from other states or areas of Florida. They will help you find the Florida home you've always wanted in the community that will fit your family's needs best! Mary Pat & Eric King, Palm Harbor, FL
As a young couple with big dreams, Scott and Marie surely have helped us reach our biggest... our new HOME! If you are searching for the best realtor out there for you, stop your research please. The Tomlinson Team is it. As their clients, words could not express how pleased we are about everything. It honestly felt like our satisfaction was their reward. Scott and Marie guided this first time home-buying couple every step of the way, as if we were their own family! Everything was so perfectly executed. There was an ample amount of care and professionalism that went into their work. We went through a VA loan and weren’t making a huge purchase but these two made us feel like we were there only clients. Even when our loan fell through initially, they gave us phenomenal references and we were able to salvage it. I’m 200% certain that Scott and Marie had our best interest in mind the entire time, as they would yours. They understood the importance of us getting our first home and did everything in their power to make sure we could. They educated us tremendously throughout the process and communicated every bit of information outstandingly. We are forever grateful for their unwavering support, dedication and hard efforts. We would not have landed the house we are in today without their expert guidance. Jacky and Julie
Thanks to the Tomlinson Team, our first home buying experience was a breeze! We had all sorts of preconceived ideas when it was time to purchase our first home. Honestly, those notions were all wrong. Scott and Marie took extensive time explaining the details of home buying, answered all questions timely and walked us through every single step assuring us that we were in the hands of experienced, passionate professionals. I can’t speak highly enough of the experience. It’s the little things they always get right, which is hard to quantify. I’ve even called and asked general questions months after the sale and they always return the inquiry in a short time. We wouldn’t use any other real estate professionals. We feel like we got lucky on the first try with the Tomlinson Team and we’re happy to call them our friends! The Dancy family
"Scott and Marie are fantastic to work with! We couldn't have asked for a better experience or more knowledgeable people when buying our first property! They knew what we wanted and showed us homes that fit our criteria. They were more than accommodating when working with the two of us and our crazy schedules! We will definitely be contacting them when it's time to sell and buy again! Thank you so much for helping us find our first home, "the chicken house". Jenny Davis and Chad Johnson
"We couldn't be more pleased with Scott and Marie in helping us find our new home. They were always courteous, helpful, informative and professional. They really aimed to please picky buyers such as us -- by phone, email or in person, they were always fast and reliable in getting back to us for anything we needed. In today's market, these qualities in a Realtor are invaluable in finding a home. I would highly recommend this Realtor "tag team" to anyone ... thanks Scott and Marie!" Josh & Tia Blauch
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Real Estate News

Latest Realty News from NAR

October 2018 Housing Affordability Index

At the national level, housing affordability is down from last month and down from a year ago. Mortgage rates rose to 4.88 percent this October, up 18.7 percent compared to 4.11 percent a year ago.

  • Housing affordability declined from a year ago in October moving the index down 9.7 percent from 162.7 to 146.9. The median sales price for a single family home sold in October in the US was $257,900 up 4.3 percent from a year ago.
  • Nationally, mortgage rates were up 77 basis point from one year ago (one percentage point equals 100 basis points).
  • The payment as a percentage of income was unchanged from last month at 17 percent this October but up from 15.4 percent from a year ago. Regionally, the West has the highest payment at 23.7 percent of income. The South had the second highest payment at 16.5 percent followed by the Northeast at 16.1 percent. The Midwest had the lowest payment as a percentage of income at 13.5 percent.

  • Regionally, the South recorded the biggest increase in home prices at 3.6 percent. The Northeast had an increase of 3.0 percent while the West had a gain of 2.5 percent. The Midwest had the smallest growth in price of 1.4 percent.
  • Regionally, all four regions saw a decline in affordability from a year ago. The Midwest had the biggest drop in affordability of 9.6 percent. The South had a decline of 9.1 percent followed by the Northeast that fell 9.0 percent. The West had the smallest drop of 7.5 percent.
  • On a monthly basis, affordability is down from last month in three of the four regions. The Northeast region had the only gain of 1.7 percent. Both the Midwest and the West shared a decline of 0.6 percent. The South had the smallest dip in affordability of 0.1 percent.

  • Despite month-to-month changes, the most affordable region was the Midwest, with an index value of 185.0. The least affordable region remained the West where the index was 105.3. For comparison, the index was 151.6 in the South, and 154.9 in the Northeast.
  • Mortgage applications are currently up. Mortgage rates continue to rise and home price growth is slowing down to catch up with incomes. Single-family homes are still moving at a face pace however tend to slow down during fall and winter season. Inventory of homes are currently up, which is a welcoming sign for potential homebuyers. Home prices are up 4.3 percent, median family incomes that are growing 3.1 percent helping reduce the pressure of home price growth.
  • What does housing affordability look like in your market? View the full data release here.
  • The Housing Affordability Index calculation assumes a 20 percent down payment and a 25 percent qualifying ratio (principal and interest payment to income). See further details on the methodology and assumptions behind the calculation here.

Property Values By State from 2005-2018

Home price appreciation is an important topic in today’s economy. Using data from the American Community Survey (ACS), we can analyze the gains and losses of property values over time. I estimated the median property values by state in 2018 using the FHFA index and the median property values from the (ACS). I then calculated the growth rate from 2005 -2018. [1]

The states with the highest estimated median property values in 2018 are The District of Columbia ($677,473), Hawaii ($649,272), California ($566,311), Massachusetts ($428,161) and Washington ($384,740).

The states with the lowest estimated median property values in 2018 are Alabama ($148,827), Oklahoma ($139,385), Arkansas ($135,733), Mississippi ($123,586) and West Virginia ($120,720).

On a regional level, the estimated price growth appears to be the strongest in the South, West, and Midwest. Price growth is weakest in the Northeast states. Overall, all regions are displaying strong to moderate growth in property values. Below is a breakdown of the Census four regions by state.

 

  • In the South, which typically leads all regions in sales, The District of Columbia led the region with 76 percent estimated price growth from 2005 to 2018. Maryland experienced 1 percent annual price growth and since 2005, home prices have grown 21 percent.

  • In the West, the least affordable region[2], Montana led all states with 88 percent price growth from 2005 to 2018. Despite the strong price growth in California since 2012, prices have only increased by 19 percent since 2005. Nevada shows a 9 percent price change over this time turning around any previous loss in value.

  • In the Midwest where affordability is most favorable, North Dakota led all states with 115 percent price growth from 2005 to 2018. Illinois, while having the smallest growth in the region had an estimated 12 percent price growth over this time.

  • In the Northeast where sales and price growth is typically slow, Pennsylvania lead the region with a 48 percent price growth from 2005 to 2018. Rhode Island, while having the smallest gain of all states, increased 6 percent price change over this time. Rhode Island is one of two states that turned around a negative property value over this time compared to 2017.


[1] I used the FHFA expanded data set not seasonally adjusted data.

[2] Based on NAR housing affordability index

Can Homeowners Cope with Lower Home Prices?

With interest rates on the rise, home prices have started cooling off.[1] On the one hand, the cooling of home prices in high-priced metro areas makes a home purchase more affordable, saving households nearly $50/month on a median-priced home.[2] On the other hand, falling prices also erodes the wealth (home equity gains) of current homeowners and can drive homeowners in a negative equity position (when the value of the home is lower than the remaining loan balance). How will declining home prices affect current homeowners and how does the current decline in home prices in some areas compare with the home equity gains?

The table below shows the home equity gains for homeowners who purchased a home in 2012 Q1 as of 2018 Q3. The home equity gained is the difference between the estimated value of the property purchased in 2012 Q1 in 2018 Q3 less the outstanding loan balance as of 2018 Q3.[3] Nationally, over the period 2012 Q1 through 2018 Q3, a homeowner who purchased a median-priced home in 2012 Q1 has gained $96,187 in home equity, which is equivalent to 41 percent of the estimated value of the home in 2018 Q3, at $235,119.

Of the 160 metro areas for which NAR calculates the median sales price, the metro areas where homeowners accumulated the largest home equity gains during 2012 Q1 – 2018 Q3 based on the purchase of a median-priced home in 2012 Q1 were San Jose-Sunnyvale-Sta. Clara ($591,576;56% of the estimated home value of $1.06 million as of 2018 Q3); San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward ($527,610; 57% of the current home value of $920,715); Urban Honolulu, HI ($337,013; 35% of current home value of $990,009); Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale ($374,565;49% of current home value of $768,634); and Boulder, CO ($329,608; 50% of current home value of $657,692).

The metro areas with the lowest home equity gains during 2012 Q1- 2018 Q3 based on the purchase of a median-priced home in 2012 Q1 were Cumberland, MD ($4,847; 6% of current home value of $79,343); Decatur, IL ($10,753; 12% of current home value of $86,302); Fayetteville, NC ($15,431; 11% of current home value of $138,627); Montgomery, AL ($17,641; or 15% of $119,252); and Peoria, IL ($17,679; or 14% of current home value of $128,818).

 

How do these equity gains compare with the price declines in high-cost metro areas thus far?  

We use the median list price in October 2018 on Realtor.com and look at the year-over-year change and compare these changes to the equity gains as a share of the current home values. In October 2018, median list prices declined in several high-priced metro areas compared to one year ago, but these declines are modest compared to the equity gains measured as a percent of the current home value: San Jose-Sunnyvale-Sta. Clara (-0.1%); San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward (0%); Sta. Maria-Sta. Barbara (-7.8%); Salinas ( -6%); Sta. Rosa ( -7.1%); Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura ( -2.1%). Among the 500 metros tracked by Realtor.com, the steepest decline in the median list price in October from one year ago was Denver-Aurora-Lakewood (10%).

In 301 of the 500 metro areas tracked by Realtor.com (60 percent), the median list price of homes for sale on Realtor.com were still up in October 2018 compared to one year ago.  List prices rose in areas such as Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue where prices are more affordable than in California ($555,050; 12.1%); Boise City, ID ($330.048; 15%); Indianapolis-Carmel-Anderson, IN ($241,450; 15%); Greensboro-High Point, NC ($223,625; 14.5%);Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise ($325,000; 14.5%), and Harrisburg-Carlisle, PA ($216,760; 14%).

 

In summary, homeowners have built up a sizable equity since 2012 that is larger relative to the price declines that have occurred thus far in several high-priced metro areas. Moreover, home prices are still appreciating in lower-priced metro areas. Given the strong underlying economic fundamentals in 2018— strong employment growth, the demographic boost from the 25-44 age group which includes the millennials, and safer underwriting standards and level of household debt—it does not yet appear likely that home prices will crash to a level that will wipe out this home equity gain. NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun forecasts no recession ahead that could cause a collapse in job growth which will impact the demand for housing.

 


[1] The earliest indicator of the direction of home prices—NAR’s median home prices— rose 4.3 percent in 2018 Q3, the slowest average rate for the quarter since 2012 Q1. The home price indices of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller, and the U.S. Census Bureau for new 1-family homes also show a slower price appreciation in 2018 Q3 (FHFA, 6.3%; S &P CoreLogic Case-Shiller, 5.7%; U.S. Census Bureau 1-family homes, 2.3%) compared to the pace of appreciation in 2018 Q1.In 500 metro areas tracked by Realtor.com, the median list price of homes for sale declined in 199 metro areas (40 percent), with the largest declines occurring in high-priced metro areas.

[2] At the current 30-year fixed mortgage rate of 4.83 percent with a 10 percent down payment, every $10,000 decline in home prices results in a saving of $47/month.

[3] I estimated home equity by subtracting the loan balance as of 2018 Q3 to the current home value as of 2018 Q3. I estimated the current home value by applying a home price appreciation factor using FHFA House Price Index (FHFA HPI 2018 Q3/ FHFA HIP 2012 Q1). I assumed that a homeowner purchased a median-priced home in 2012 Q1 at the average median price in 2012 Q1 of $158,333 financed by a 30-year fixed rate mortgage of 3.6 percent (2012 Q1 average) and a 10 percent down payment.

October 2018 Pending Home Sales

  • NAR released a summary of pending home sales data showing that October’s pending home sales pace was down 2.6 percent last month and fell 6.7 percent from a year ago.
  • Pending sales represent homes that have a signed contract to purchase on them but have yet to close. They tend to lead existing-home sales data by 1 to 2 months.
  • All four regions showed declines from a year ago. The West had the biggest drop in sales of 15.3 percent. The Midwest fell 4.9 percent followed by the South with a decline of 4.6 percent. The Northeast had the smallest dip in sales of 2.9 percent.
  • From last month, three of the four regions showed declines in sales. The West region had the biggest drop of 8.9 percent. The Midwest fell 1.8 percent followed by the South with a dip of 1.1 percent. The only region with an incline in sales was the Northeast, which had a modest gain of 0.7 percent.
  • The U.S. pending home sales index level for the month was 102.1. September’s data was revised up to 104.8.

  • In spite of the decline, this is the pending index’s 54th consecutive month over the 100 level.
  • The 100 level is based on a 2001 benchmark and is consistent with a healthy market and existing-home sales above the 5 million mark.

REALTORS® Confidence Index Survey: October 2018 Highlights

The REALTORS® Confidence Index (RCI) survey[1] gathers monthly information from REALTORS® about local real estate market conditions, characteristics of buyers and sellers, and issues affecting homeownership and real estate transactions.[2] This report presents key results about market transactions from October 2018. View and download the full report here.

Market Conditions and Expectations

  • The REALTORS® Buyer Traffic Index registered at 45 (60 in October 2017).[3]
  • The REALTORS® Seller Traffic Index registered at 40 (45 in October 2017).
  • The REALTORS® Confidence Index—SixMonth Outlook Current Conditions registered at 49 for detached single-family, 42 for townhome, and 40 for condominium properties. An index above 50 indicates market conditions are expected to improve.
  • Properties were typically on the market for 33 days (34 days in October 2017).
  • Seventy-six percent of respondents reported that home prices remained constant or rose in October 2018 compared to levels one year ago (89 percent in October 2017).

Characteristics of Buyers and Sellers

  • First-time buyers accounted for 31 percent of sales (32 percent in October 2017).
  • Vacation and investment buyers comprised 15 percent of sales (13 percent in October 2017).
  • Sales of distressed properties (foreclosed or sold as a short sale) accounted for three percent of sales (four percent in October 2017).
  • Cash sales made up 23 percent of sales (20 percent in October 2017).
  • Eighteen percent of sellers offered incentives such as providing warranty (8 percent), paying for closing costs (8 percent), and undertaking remodeling (3 percent).[4]

Issues Affecting Buyers and Sellers

  • From August–October 2018, 74 percent of contracts settled on time (73 percent in October 2017).
  • Among sales that closed in October 2018, 72 percent had contract contingencies. The most common contingencies pertained to home inspection (58 percent), obtaining financing (43 percent), and getting an acceptable appraisal (40 percent).
  • REALTORS® report “interest rate” and “low inventory” as the major issues affecting transactions in October 2018.

About the RCI Survey

  • The RCI Survey gathers information from REALTORS® about local market conditions based on their client interactions and the characteristics of their most recent sales for the month.
  • The October 2018 survey was sent to 50,000 REALTORS® who were selected from NAR’s 1.3 million members through simple random sampling and to 9,121 respondents in the previous three surveys who provided their email addresses.
  • There were 3,863 respondents to the online survey which ran from November 1-9, 2018. The survey’s overall margin of error at the 95 percent confidence level is two percent. The margins of error for subgroups and sample proportions of below or above 50 percent are larger.
  • NAR weighs the responses by a factor that aligns the sample distribution of responses to the distribution of NAR membership.

The REALTORS® Confidence Index is provided by NAR solely for use as a reference. Resale of any part of this data is prohibited without NAR’s prior written consent. For questions on this report or to purchase the RCI series, please email: Data@realtors.org


[1] Thanks to George Ratiu, Managing Director, Housing and Commercial Research and Gay Cororaton, Research Economist for their data analysis and comments to the RCI Report.

[2] Respondents report on the most recent characteristics of their most recent sale for the month.

[3] An index greater than 50 means more respondents reported conditions as “strong” compared to one year ago than “weak.” An index of 50 indicates a balance of respondents

who viewed conditions as “strong” or “weak.”

[4] The difference in the sum of percentages to the total percentage of sellers who offered incentives is due to rounding.

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