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Living in The Sunshine State.

Home Mortgage Rates in Florida

Florida Real Estate Information

Clearwater Lifeguard Station 3.

Florida is the 3rd most populous state in the US, and for good reason. With its warm year round temperatures and miles of beaches, there is no doubt as to why it is referred to as the “Sunshine State.” Florida has been a dream destination point for individuals and families for generations. Residents are drawn to the state for its weather, vibrant cities, and quiet coastal areas.

Are you thinking of buying a home (or a second home) in Florida? With its warm sunny climate, its two shores of beachfront property, its theme park attractions and its great cities, Florida has a lot to offer homebuyers.

Long a retirement destination for older Americans, especially those from the Northeast and Midwest, Florida also has become increasingly popular with foreign buyers for investment and recreational opportunities.

In mid-2017, the median value for a Florida home was $209,900, an increase of 8.8 percent over the past year. Real estate analysts predict these values will go up 2.4 percent within the coming year.

The median price per square foot was $157 in Florida, and the median monthly rental price was $1,725. The median price of a home was $279,900 as of mid-2017. As you might expect, real estate costs vary dramatically across the state, with the highest cost of living in the state in the Miami area.

How Florida Weathered the 2008 Recession

Miami was one of the hottest housing markets in the nation leading up to the 2008 recession. To get a sense of how extreme the bubble was, the movie The Big Short featured a scene with a Florida stripper with 5 homes and a condo which were all financed using adjustable rates.

Florida’s housing market was hit hard by the recession, but is has rebounded nicely. Home prices have been slowing increasing across the state since late 2011.

Even in South Florida, where many home prices lost more than 50 percent of their value during the big housing bust, things have turned around. According to an article in The Washington Post, developers are more cautious, and several factors make real estate growth different this time around.

For example, condominium buyers, who helped fuel the housing boom earlier this century in Miami, are now putting down deposits of 50 percent of the purchase price rather than 10 to 20 percent that was common before the housing bust.

Also, while banks are now back to funding more building projects in South Florida, they often are requiring developers to have a substantial number of pre-construction sales.

A Look Around The State

Popular Metropolitan Regions

FL Rank US Rank Metropolitan Area 2016 Pop 2010 Pop Change % △
1 8 Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach 6,066,387 5,564,635 501,752 9.02%
2 18 Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater 3,032,171 2,783,243 248,928 8.94%
3 23 Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford 2,441,257 2,134,411 306,846 14.38%
4 40 Jacksonville 1,478,212 1,345,596 132,616 9.86%
5 73 North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton 788,457 702,281 86,176 12.27%
6 78 Cape Coral-Fort Myers 722,336 618,754 103,582 16.74%
7 82 Lakeland-Winter Haven 666,149 602,095 64,054 10.64%
8 88 Deltona-Daytona Beach-Ormond Beach 637,674 590,289 47,385 8.03%
9 95 Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville 579,130 543,376 35,754 6.58%
10 109 Pensacola-Ferry Pass-Brent 485,684 448,991 36,693 8.17%
11 111 Port St. Lucie 465,208 424,107 41,101 9.69%
12 140 Tallahassee 379,627 367,413 12,214 3.32%
13 145 Naples-Immokalee-Marco Island 365,136 321,520 43,616 13.57%
14 149 Ocala 349,020 331,298 17,722 5.35%
15 170 Gainesville 280,708 264,275 16,433 6.22%
16 180 Crestview-Fort Walton Beach-Destin 267,059 235,865 31,194 13.23%
17 221 Panama City 199,964 184,715 15,249 8.26%
18 237 Punta Gorda 178,465 159,978 18,487 11.56%
19 274 Sebastian-Vero Beach 151,563 138,028 13,535 9.81%
20 293 Homosassa Springs 143,621 141,236 2,385 1.69%
21 329 The Villages 123,996 93,420 30,576 32.73%
22 380 Sebring 100,917 98,786 2,131 2.16%
23 450 Key West 79,077 73,090 5,987 8.19%
24 471 Palatka 72,277 74,364 -2,087 -2.81%
25 483 Lake City 69,299 67,531 1,768 2.62%
26 689 Okeechobee 40,314 39,996 318 0.80%
27 701 Clewiston 39,290 39,140 150 0.38%
28 755 Arcadia 35,800 34,862 938 2.69%
29 841 Wauchula 27,360 27,731 -371 -1.34%

Southeast Florida

Southeast Florida, which includes the city of Miami, offers diverse cultural, recreational and business opportunities in a subtropical climate.

With a population of more than 5.5 million people, the Miami metro area, which includes Fort Lauderdale, is the eighth most populous region in the United States. Miami is a major international trade center and has an economy based upon tourism, media and entertainment and finance.

Miami Skyline at Night.

The median home value in Miami in mid-2017 was just over $300,000, an increase of 1.5 percent over the past year. The average list price of a home or condominium in Miami was $449,000.

The median list price per square foot in the city itself was $411, which is nearly double the Miami metropolitan area average of $211 per square foot. The median rental price in the city of Miami was $2,300, which is $300 higher than the Miami metro area median price.

Miami luxury condos are a popular destination for illicit hot money from South American drug cartels.

“We don’t come across [money laundering in real estate] once every 10 or 12 cases,” John Tobon, U.S. Homeland Security Investigations Deputy Special Agent in Charge for South Florida, told the Miami Herald in January. “We come across real estate being purchased with illicit funds once every other case.”

Northeast Florida

If someone were to ask you what is the biggest city in Florida, most people likely would say Miami or maybe Orlando. They would be wrong. Miami would win hands-down if they were considering its entire metro area, but if  going by the actual city population, the winner is Jacksonville.

The reason is that the city of Jacksonville is much larger geographically than the city of Miami. Jacksonville’s city borders contain 750 square miles, while Miami is roughly 36 square miles in area.

Jacksonville Skyline.

Located in the northeast corner of the state on the shore of the St. Johns River and about 25 miles south of the state border with Georgia, Jacksonville is a financial and commercial center for North Florida, a busy seaport and a U.S. military base.

In 2017, the median home value in Jacksonville was $153,600, an increase of 10.8 percent over the previous year. Home values should continue to increase by about 3.6 percent over the next year. In mid-2017, the median listing price of homes in Jacksonville was $191,000.

The average list price per square foot in the city itself is $111, a price that is less than the Jacksonville metro area average of $127 per square foot. The average rental price in Jacksonville is $1,200, which also is lower than the metro average of $1,325.

Central Florida

Known as the Theme Park Capital of the World, Orlando is the center of a busy metropolitan area with a population of nearly 2,500,000 people, making it the third largest metro are in Florida.

Through the popularity of Disney World, Universal Studios and other local theme parks, the Orlando area is a world tourist destination and is one of the nation’s busiest convention and conference centers. The Orlando area offers many locations for fine dining, golf and family entertainment.

Orlando Skyline.

The median value for an Orlando home was $169,700 in 2017, an increase of 11.9 percent over the previous year with experts predicting an increase of 4.4 percent over the following year. The average list price is $137 per square foot in Orlando, and the average rental price is $1,500. The 2017 median listing price of homes in Orlando was $265,000.

Tampa is another popular city in central Florda, located on the Western coast. The city began slowly as a cattle and citrus shipping port near the United States Army outpost named Fort Brooke. The broader metro Tampa Bay Area has a population of roughly 2.9 million people & includes the cities of St. Petersburg and Clearwater. The area's economy boasts a strong footprint in financial services, healthcare, tourism, real estate, shipping and professional sports.

Downtown Tampa at Night.

The median home value in Tampa is $185,700 in 2017, a 12.9 percent over the previous year with experts predicting an increase of 3.7 percent over the following year. The median list price is $167 per square foot in Tampa, and the average rental price is $1,500. The 2017 median listing price of homes located in Tampa was $279,995.

Florida Panhandle

The northwestern part of Florida, frequently called the Panhandle, offers beaches, fishing, a slight taste of all four seasons and a slower-paced lifestyle than the larger urban areas of the state.

The state capital of Tallahassee, with a 2016 population of 190,894, is the largest city in the region, but Pensacola, a seaport on Pensacola Bay, is the center of a growing metropolitan region.

Downtown Tallahassee at Night.

In Tallahassee, the median home value was $167,600 in mid-2017, an increase of 3.7 percent over the past year, and the median listing price was $195,000.

The average price per square foot for a listing in Tallahassee was $123, higher than the Tallahassee metro area average of $121. The median rental price in Tallahassee was $975, which is about the same as the Tallahassee metro rental price.

In Pensacola, the median home value was $134,700 in mid-2017, a rise of nearly 10 percent from 2016, and experts predict values will increase about 5 percent over the next year. The median listing price of a home in Pensacola was $182,250 in mid-2017.

The average list price per square foot for a home in Pensacola is $103, lower than the Pensacola metro area median price of $111, and the average rental price in Pensacola is $995, also lower than the metro average price of $1,150.

Florida Census Data

According to the United States census an estimated 20,612,439 people live in the state of Florida. The state has 65,755 mi² of land area, which gave it a population density of 313.47 per mi². Here is a list of cities with more than 10,000 residents, with their estimated population as of June 2016 & the 2010 United States Census. For Census Designated Places (CDP) where there was no population estimate available for 2016, the 2011-2015 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates data was used.

All table columns are sortable. Click on the column headers to sort by that column. Click again to sort low to high. Cities with higher levels of population growth typically see the increased demand drive faster real estate price appreciation.

Rank Geography County 2016 Pop 2010 Pop Change % △ Land mi² Pop Den mi²
1 Jacksonville Duval 880,619 821,784 58,835 7.16% 747 1,178.87
2 Miami Miami-Dade 453,579 399,457 54,122 13.55% 35.87 12,645.08
3 Tampa Hillsborough 377,165 335,709 41,456 12.35% 113.41 3,325.68
4 Orlando Orange 277,173 238,300 38,873 16.31% 102.4 2,706.77
5 St. Petersburg Pinellas 260,999 244,769 16,230 6.63% 61.74 4,227.39
6 Hialeah Miami-Dade 236,387 224,669 11,718 5.22% 21.45 11,020.37
7 Tallahassee Leon 190,894 181,376 9,518 5.25% 100.25 1,904.18
8 Port St. Lucie St. Lucie 185,132 164,603 20,529 12.47% 113.95 1,624.68
9 Cape Coral Lee 179,804 154,305 25,499 16.53% 105.67 1,701.56
10 Fort Lauderdale Broward 178,752 165,521 13,231 7.99% 34.77 5,140.98
11 Pembroke Pines Broward 168,587 154,750 13,837 8.94% 33.12 5,090.19
12 Hollywood Broward 151,998 140,768 11,230 7.98% 27.37 5,553.45
13 Miramar Broward 138,449 122,041 16,408 13.44% 29.52 4,690.01
14 Gainesville Alachua 131,591 124,354 7,237 5.82% 61.3 2,146.67
15 Coral Springs Broward 130,059 121,096 8,963 7.40% 23.79 5,466.96
16 Clearwater Pinellas 114,361 107,685 6,676 6.20% 25.56 4,474.22
17 Miami Gardens Miami-Dade 113,058 107,167 5,891 5.50% 18.23 6,201.76
Lehigh Acres CDP Lee 110,244 86,784 23,460 27.03% 92.56 1,191.05
18 Palm Bay Brevard 110,104 103,190 6,914 6.70% 65.7 1,675.86
19 Pompano Beach Broward 109,393 99,845 9,548 9.56% 24 4,558.04
Brandon CDP Hillsborough 108,287 103,483 4,804 4.64% 33.1 3,271.51
20 West Palm Beach Palm Beach 108,161 99,919 8,242 8.25% 55.29 1,956.25
21 Lakeland Polk 106,420 97,422 8,998 9.24% 65.27 1,630.46
22 Davie Broward 101,871 91,992 9,879 10.74% 34.89 2,919.78
Spring Hill CDP Hernando 101,709 98,621 3,088 3.13% 59.81 1,700.54
23 Boca Raton Palm Beach 96,114 84,392 11,722 13.89% 29.33 3,276.99
24 Sunrise Broward 93,734 84,439 9,295 11.01% 18.1 5,178.67
25 Plantation Broward 92,706 84,955 7,751 9.12% 21.74 4,264.31
26 Miami Beach Miami-Dade 91,917 87,779 4,138 4.71% 7.63 12,046.79
27 Deltona Volusia 90,124 85,182 4,942 5.80% 37.53 2,401.39
Alafaya CDP Orange 85,167 78,113 7,054 9.03% 37.96 2,243.60
28 Palm Coast Flagler 85,109 75,180 9,929 13.21% 89.87 947.02
29 Largo Pinellas 83,065 77,648 5,417 6.98% 17.62 4,714.25
Town 'n' Country CDP Hillsborough 82,219 78,442 3,777 4.82% 22.11 3,718.63
30 Melbourne Brevard 81,185 76,068 5,117 6.73% 33.86 2,397.67
Riverview CDP Hillsborough 79,886 71,050 8,836 12.44% 46.19 1,729.51
31 Deerfield Beach Broward 79,764 75,018 4,746 6.33% 15.09 5,285.88
32 Fort Myers Lee 77,146 62,298 14,848 23.83% 39.96 1,930.58
Kendall CDP Miami-Dade 76,267 75,371 896 1.19% 16.08 4,742.97
33 Boynton Beach Palm Beach 75,569 68,217 7,352 10.78% 16.17 4,673.41
34 Lauderhill Broward 71,626 66,887 4,739 7.09% 8.53 8,396.95
35 Weston Broward 70,015 65,333 4,682 7.17% 25.16 2,782.79
36 Kissimmee Osceola 69,369 59,682 9,687 16.23% 21.19 3,273.67
37 Homestead Miami-Dade 67,996 60,512 7,484 12.37% 15.14 4,491.15
38 Delray Beach Palm Beach 67,371 60,522 6,849 11.32% 15.81 4,261.29
Pine Hills CDP Orange 66,906 60,076 6,830 11.37% 12.25 5,461.71
39 Daytona Beach Volusia 66,645 61,005 5,640 9.25% 58.41 1,140.99
The Villages CDP Sumter & Marion 66,083 51,442 14,641 28.46% 30.81 2,144.86
40 Tamarac Broward 65,199 60,427 4,772 7.90% 11.62 5,610.93
41 North Port Sarasota 64,274 57,357 6,917 12.06% 99.58 645.45
42 Wellington village Palm Beach 63,900 56,508 7,392 13.08% 45.14 1,415.60
43 Jupiter Palm Beach 63,813 55,156 8,657 15.70% 21.47 2,972.19
44 North Miami Miami-Dade 62,139 58,786 3,353 5.70% 8.41 7,388.70
45 Port Orange Volusia 61,105 56,048 5,057 9.02% 26.66 2,292.01
Poinciana CDP Osceola & Polk 59,927 53,193 6,734 12.66% 71.88 833.71
Palm Harbor CDP Pinellas 59,769 57,439 2,330 4.06% 17.38 3,438.95
46 Coconut Creek Broward 59,405 52,909 6,496 12.28% 11.85 5,013.08
Kendale Lakes CDP Miami-Dade 59,354 56,148 3,206 5.71% 8.1 7,327.65
47 Ocala Marion 59,253 56,315 2,938 5.22% 44.83 1,321.73
48 Sanford Seminole 58,605 53,570 5,035 9.40% 22.96 2,552.48
49 Doral Miami-Dade 57,947 45,704 12,243 26.79% 13.88 4,174.86
50 Margate Broward 57,870 53,284 4,586 8.61% 8.85 6,538.98
Tamiami CDP Miami-Dade 57,195 55,271 1,924 3.48% 7.07 8,089.82
51 Sarasota Sarasota 56,610 51,917 4,693 9.04% 14.66 3,861.53
Port Charlotte CDP Charlotte 56,434 54,392 2,042 3.75% 28.43 1,985.02
The Hammocks CDP Miami-Dade 55,713 51,003 4,710 9.23% 7.88 7,070.18
52 Bradenton Manatee 55,687 49,546 6,141 12.39% 14.18 3,927.15
Fountainebleau CDP Miami-Dade 55,596 59,764 -4,168 -6.97% 4.26 13,050.70
53 Bonita Springs Lee 54,198 43,914 10,284 23.42% 38.6 1,404.09
54 Pensacola Escambia 53,779 51,923 1,856 3.57% 22.54 2,385.94
55 Palm Beach Gardens Palm Beach 53,778 48,452 5,326 10.99% 55.09 976.18
56 Pinellas Park Pinellas 52,137 49,079 3,058 6.23% 15.51 3,361.51
57 Coral Gables Miami-Dade 50,815 46,780 4,035 8.63% 12.92 3,933.05
Wesley Chapel CDP Pasco 49,735 44,092 5,643 12.80% 43.9 1,132.92
58 Apopka Orange 49,458 41,542 7,916 19.06% 31.24 1,583.16
Country Club CDP Miami-Dade 48,622 47,105 1,517 3.22% 4.14 11,744.44
59 St. Cloud Osceola 47,809 35,183 12,626 35.89% 17.76 2,691.95
60 Titusville Brevard 46,019 43,761 2,258 5.16% 29.37 1,566.87
61 Fort Pierce St. Lucie 45,295 41,590 3,705 8.91% 20.57 2,201.99
62 Ocoee Orange 44,820 35,579 9,241 25.97% 14.71 3,046.91
63 Cutler Bay Miami-Dade 44,707 40,286 4,421 10.97% 9.83 4,548.02
64 Oakland Park Broward 44,326 41,363 2,963 7.16% 7.46 5,941.82
65 North Miami Beach Miami-Dade 43,891 41,523 2,368 5.70% 4.83 9,087.16
66 North Lauderdale Broward 43,699 41,023 2,676 6.52% 4.59 9,520.48
67 Altamonte Springs Seminole 43,492 41,496 1,996 4.81% 9.01 4,827.08
68 Ormond Beach Volusia 42,162 38,137 4,025 10.55% 31.93 1,320.45
69 Winter Garden Orange 41,988 34,568 7,420 21.46% 15.41 2,724.72
University CDP Hillsborough 41,858 41,163 695 1.69% 6.42 6,519.94
North Fort Myers CDP Lee 40,560 39,407 1,153 2.93% 49.48 819.73
70 Greenacres Palm Beach 40,013 37,573 2,440 6.49% 5.79 6,910.71
71 Hallandale Beach Broward 39,500 37,113 2,387 6.43% 4.22 9,360.19
Kendall West CDP Miami-Dade 39,347 36,154 3,193 8.83% 2.75 14,308.00
72 Oviedo Seminole 39,337 33,342 5,995 17.98% 15.21 2,586.26
73 Winter Haven Polk 38,953 33,874 5,079 14.99% 31.3 1,244.50
South Miami Heights CDP Miami-Dade 38,255 35,696 2,559 7.17% 4.89 7,823.11
74 Plant City Hillsborough 38,200 34,721 3,479 10.02% 27.18 1,405.45
75 Royal Palm Beach village Palm Beach 38,006 34,140 3,866 11.32% 11.14 3,411.67
The Acreage CDP Palm Beach 37,853 38,704 -851 -2.20% 40.84 926.86
76 Lake Worth Palm Beach 37,812 34,910 2,902 8.31% 5.87 6,441.57
77 Aventura Miami-Dade 37,724 35,762 1,962 5.49% 2.65 14,235.47
78 Panama City Bay 37,635 36,484 1,151 3.15% 29.28 1,285.35
Egypt Lake-Leto CDP Hillsborough 37,408 35,282 2,126 6.03% 5.91 6,329.61
Valrico CDP Hillsborough 36,975 35,545 1,430 4.02% 13.81 2,677.41
79 Dunedin Pinellas 36,381 35,321 1,060 3.00% 10.36 3,511.68
Merritt Island CDP Brevard 35,900 34,743 1,157 3.33% 17.51 2,050.26
Richmond West CDP Miami-Dade 35,693 31,973 3,720 11.63% 4.17 8,559.47
80 Winter Springs  Seminole 35,599 33,282 2,317 6.96% 14.67 2,426.65
81 Cooper City Broward 35,405 28,547 6,858 24.02% 8.04 4,403.61
Carrollwood CDP Hillsborough 35,027 33,365 1,662 4.98% 9.21 3,803.15
82 Lauderdale Lakes Broward 34,790 32,593 2,197 6.74% 3.68 9,453.80
83 Riviera Beach Palm Beach 34,244 32,488 1,756 5.41% 8.53 4,014.54
Land O' Lakes CDP Pasco 33,812 31,996 1,816 5.68% 19.04 1,775.84
Golden Glades CDP Miami-Dade 33,806 33,145 661 1.99% 4.88 6,927.46
84 Clermont Lake 33,549 28,742 4,807 16.72% 13.63 2,461.41
Navarre CDP Santa Rosa 32,949 31,378 1,571 5.01% 23 1,432.57
University CDP Orange 32,937 31,084 1,853 5.96% 9.08 3,627.42
Four Corners CDP Lake, Polk, Osceola & Orange 32,727 26,116 6,611 25.31% 46.36 705.93
85 Estero Lee 32,140 2,325 29,815 1282.37% 24.45 1,314.52
Ferry Pass CDP Escambia 32,077 28,921 3,156 10.91% 13.94 2,301.08
East Lake CDP Pinellas 32,054 30,962 1,092 3.53% 28.91 1,108.75
86 DeLand Volusia 31,569 27,031 4,538 16.79% 17.6 1,793.69
87 Parkland Broward 31,507 23,962 7,545 31.49% 12.33 2,555.31
88 Dania Beach Broward 31,422 29,639 1,783 6.02% 8.09 3,884.05
Buenaventura Lakes CDP Osceola 31,348 26,079 5,269 20.20% 5.58 5,617.92
Lakeside CDP Clay 31,223 30,943 280 0.90% 13.52 2,309.39
Fruit Cove CDP St. Johns 31,146 29,362 1,784 6.08% 16.06 1,939.35
89 Miami Lakes Miami-Dade 30,873 29,361 1,512 5.15% 5.63 5,483.66
West Little River CDP Miami-Dade 30,749 34,699 -3,950 -11.38% 4.56 6,743.20
Westchester CDP Miami-Dade 30,585 29,862 723 2.42% 3.94 7,762.69
Fleming Island CDP Clay 30,350 27,126 3,224 11.89% 15.83 1,917.25
90 Winter Park Orange 30,208 27,852 2,356 8.46% 8.68 3,480.18
Golden Gate CDP Collier 29,258 23,961 5,297 22.11% 3.9 7,502.05
Meadow Woods CDP Orange 28,943 25,558 3,385 13.24% 11.39 2,541.09
Lake Magdalene CDP Hillsborough 28,560 28,509 51 0.18% 10.23 2,791.79
91 Rockledge Brevard 27,068 24,926 2,142 8.59% 11.94 2,267.00
92 Casselberry Seminole 27,053 26,241 812 3.09% 6.99 3,870.24
Princeton CDP Miami-Dade 26,992 22,038 4,954 22.48% 7.38 3,657.45
93 Key West Monroe 26,990 24,649 2,341 9.50% 5.59 4,828.26
94 Temple Terrace Hillsborough 26,515 24,541 1,974 8.04% 6.85 3,870.80
Leisure City CDP Miami-Dade 25,952 22,655 3,297 14.55% 3.33 7,793.39
University Park CDP Miami-Dade 25,870 26,995 -1,125 -4.17% 3.97 6,516.37
95 New Smyrna Beach Volusia 25,796 22,464 3,332 14.83% 34.64 744.69
Citrus Park CDP Hillsborough 25,570 24,252 1,318 5.43% 10.16 2,516.73
Bayonet Point CDP Pasco 25,453 23,467 1,986 8.46% 5.74 4,434.32
East Lake-Orient Park CDP Hillsborough 25,373 22,753 2,620 11.51% 16.32 1,554.72
Immokalee CDP Collier 24,879 24,154 725 3.00% 22.7 1,095.99
96 Tarpon Springs Pinellas 24,867 23,484 1,383 5.89% 9.11 2,729.64
Wright CDP Okaloosa 24,862 23,127 1,735 7.50% 5.52 4,503.99
97 Sebastian Indian River 24,772 21,929 2,843 12.96% 13.66 1,813.47
98 Palmetto Bay village Miami-Dade 24,570 23,410 1,160 4.96% 8.29 2,963.81
99 Palm Springs village Palm Beach 24,051 18,928 5,123 27.07% 4.2 5,726.43
Coral Terrace CDP Miami-Dade 23,994 24,376 -382 -1.57% 3.38 7,098.82
Vero Beach South CDP Indian River 23,973 23,092 881 3.82% 10.25 2,338.83
The Crossings CDP Miami-Dade 23,938 22,758 1,180 5.18% 3.46 6,918.50
100 Hialeah Gardens Miami-Dade 23,837 21,744 2,093 9.63% 3.25 7,334.46
South Bradenton CDP Manatee 23,822 22,178 1,644 7.41% 4.47 5,329.31
101 Crestview Okaloosa 23,567 20,978 2,589 12.34% 16.02 1,471.10
Wekiwa Springs CDP Seminole 23,500 21,998 1,502 6.83% 8.59 2,735.74
102 Haines City Polk 23,454 20,535 2,919 14.21% 18.39 1,275.37
Palm City CDP Martin 23,413 23,120 293 1.27% 13.91 1,683.18
103 Jacksonville Beach Duval 23,387 21,362 2,025 9.48% 7.33 3,190.59
Keystone CDP Hillsborough 23,271 24,039 -768 -3.19% 35.13 662.43
Westchase CDP Hillsborough 23,222 21,747 1,475 6.78% 9.87 2,352.79
Oak Ridge CDP Orange 23,108 22,685 423 1.86% 3.57 6,472.83
Oakleaf Plantation CDP Clay 23,087 20,315 2,772 13.65% 16.57 1,393.30
Palm River-Clair Mel CDP Hillsborough 23,017 21,024 1,993 9.48% 11.55 1,992.81
Bloomingdale CDP Hillsborough 22,882 22,711 171 0.75% 8.13 2,814.51
Northdale CDP Hillsborough 22,725 22,079 646 2.93% 8.08 2,812.50
Estero CDP Lee 22,612 18,176 4,436 24.41% 20.02 1,129.47
104 Venice Sarasota 22,465 20,748 1,717 8.28% 15.27 1,471.19
105 Leesburg Lake 22,419 20,117 2,302 11.44% 30.8 727.89
Bellview CDP Escambia 22,341 23,355 -1,014 -4.34% 11.64 1,919.33
Hunters Creek CDP Orange 22,327 14,321 8,006 55.90% 3.83 5,829.50
106 Sunny Isles Beach Miami-Dade 22,086 20,832 1,254 6.02% 1.02 21,652.94
107 Edgewater Volusia 22,077 20,750 1,327 6.40% 22.22 993.56
Pace CDP Santa Rosa 21,997 20,039 1,958 9.77% 24.23 907.84
Ensley CDP Escambia 21,981 20,602 1,379 6.69% 12.17 1,806.16
108 Fort Walton Beach Okaloosa 21,971 19,507 2,464 12.63% 7.48 2,937.30
Brent CDP Escambia 21,957 21,804 153 0.70% 10.38 2,115.32
109 Naples Collier 21,845 19,537 2,308 11.81% 12.31 1,774.57
Palm Valley CDP St. Johns 21,630 20,019 1,611 8.05% 12.21 1,771.50
110 West Melbourne Brevard 21,293 18,355 2,938 16.01% 10.2 2,087.55
111 Lynn Haven Bay 20,850 18,493 2,357 12.75% 10.37 2,010.61
Lealman CDP Pinellas 20,783 19,879 904 4.55% 4.01 5,182.79
112 Eustis Lake 20,768 18,558 2,210 11.91% 10.5 1,977.90
113 Sweetwater Miami-Dade 20,701 13,499 7,202 53.35% 0.79 26,203.80
Ruskin CDP Hillsborough 20,643 17,208 3,435 19.96% 18.01 1,146.20
Holiday CDP Pasco 20,636 22,403 -1,767 -7.89% 5.37 3,842.83
Sun City Center CDP Hillsborough 20,554 19,258 1,296 6.73% 15.74 1,305.84
West Pensacola CDP Escambia 20,538 21,339 -801 -3.75% 7.18 2,860.45
Ives Estates CDP Miami-Dade 20,510 19,525 985 5.04% 2.5 8,204.00
Lutz CDP Hillsborough 20,398 19,344 1,054 5.45% 24.65 827.51
114 DeBary Volusia 20,394 19,320 1,074 5.56% 18.97 1,075.07
Horizon West CDP Orange 19,706 14,000 5,706 40.76% 32.94 598.24
Florida Ridge CDP Indian River 19,701 18,164 1,537 8.46% 10.77 1,829.25
Jasmine Estates CDP Pasco 19,604 18,989 615 3.24% 3.55 5,522.25
115 Bartow Polk 19,499 17,298 2,201 12.72% 45.87 425.09
Bayshore Gardens CDP Manatee 19,446 16,323 3,123 19.13% 3.5 5,556.00
116 Pinecrest village Miami-Dade 19,444 18,223 1,221 6.70% 7.45 2,609.93
117 Belle Glade Palm Beach 19,130 17,467 1,663 9.52% 5.62 3,403.91
Ojus CDP Miami-Dade 19,030 18,036 994 5.51% 2.65 7,181.13
118 Punta Gorda Charlotte 18,796 16,641 2,155 12.95% 15.01 1,252.23
San Carlos Park CDP Lee 18,443 16,824 1,619 9.62% 4.72 3,907.42
119 Seminole Pinellas 18,334 17,233 1,101 6.39% 5.1 3,594.90
120 Cocoa Brevard 18,102 17,140 962 5.61% 13.32 1,359.01
Gibsonton CDP Hillsborough 18,070 14,234 3,836 26.95% 12.79 1,412.82
Glenvar Heights CDP  Miami-Dade 17,881 16,898 983 5.82% 4.12 4,340.05
121 Marco Island Collier 17,847 16,413 1,434 8.74% 12.14 1,470.10
122 Safety Harbor Pinellas 17,606 16,884 722 4.28% 4.9 3,593.06
123 Maitland Orange 17,519 15,751 1,768 11.22% 5.27 3,324.29
Midway CDP Santa Rosa 17,434 16,115 1,319 8.18% 12.01 1,451.62
Pinewood CDP Miami-Dade 16,992 16,520 472 2.86% 1.76 9,654.55
Lake Butler CDP Orange 16,871 15,400 1,471 9.55% 12.22 1,380.61
124 Vero Beach Indian River 16,751 15,220 1,531 10.06% 11.44 1,464.25
Three Lakes CDP Miami-Dade 16,749 15,047 1,702 11.31% 3.2 5,234.06
125 Stuart Martin 16,623 15,593 1,030 6.61% 6.65 2,499.70
Country Walk CDP Miami-Dade 16,485 15,997 488 3.05% 2.58 6,389.53
126 Opa-locka Miami-Dade 16,457 15,219 1,238 8.13% 4.3 3,827.21
Brownsville CDP Miami-Dade 16,410 15,313 1,097 7.16% 2.27 7,229.07
Apollo Beach CDP Hillsborough 16,336 14,055 2,281 16.23% 19.84 823.39
Fish Hawk CDP Hillsborough 16,297 14,087 2,210 15.69% 16.21 1,005.37
127 Lake Mary Seminole 16,198 13,822 2,376 17.19% 9.16 1,768.34
Palmetto Estates CDP Miami-Dade 16,175 13,535 2,640 19.50% 2.16 7,488.43
128 New Port Richey Pasco 16,167 14,911 1,256 8.42% 4.53 3,568.87
Myrtle Grove CDP Escambia 16,134 15,870 264 1.66% 6.64 2,429.82
Sunset CDP Miami-Dade 16,069 16,389 -320 -1.95% 3.48 4,617.53
129 Tavares Lake 15,922 13,951 1,971 14.13% 9.5 1,676.00
130 Lake Wales Polk 15,860 14,225 1,635 11.49% 18.69 848.58
West Lealman CDP Pinellas 15,838 15,651 187 1.19% 3.13 5,060.06
Sarasota Springs CDP Sarasota 15,547 14,395 1,152 8.00% 3.5 4,442.00
131 Auburndale Polk 15,540 13,507 2,033 15.05% 13.49 1,151.96
132 Callaway Bay 15,269 14,405 864 6.00% 9.01 1,694.67
Conway CDP Orange 15,187 13,467 1,720 12.77% 3.42 4,440.64
133 West Park Broward 15,112 14,156 956 6.75% 2.19 6,900.46
134 Longwood Seminole 15,011 13,657 1,354 9.91% 5.45 2,754.31
Southchase CDP Orange 14,987 15,921 -934 -5.87% 6.84 2,191.08
136 Niceville Okaloosa 14,974 12,749 2,225 17.45% 11.42 1,311.21
135 Lady Lake Lake 14,974 13,926 1,048 7.53% 8.07 1,855.51
Forest City CDP Seminole 14,924 13,854 1,070 7.72% 4.26 3,503.29
137 Zephyrhills Pasco 14,907 13,288 1,619 12.18% 8.88 1,678.72
South Venice CDP Sarasota 14,652 13,949 703 5.04% 6.02 2,433.89
Olympia Heights CDP Miami-Dade 14,645 13,488 1,157 8.58% 2.65 5,526.42
Englewood CDP Sarasota & Charlotte 14,515 14,863 -348 -2.34% 9.79 1,482.64
138 Miami Springs Miami-Dade 14,431 13,809 622 4.50% 2.88 5,010.76
139 Oldsmar Pinellas 14,397 13,591 806 5.93% 8.7 1,654.83
Lockhart CDP Orange 14,312 13,060 1,252 9.59% 4.42 3,238.01
140 St. Augustine St. Johns 14,280 12,975 1,305 10.06% 9.43 1,514.32
Upper Grand Lagoon CDP Bay 14,216 13,963 253 1.81% 8.09 1,757.23
Gonzalez CDP Escambia 14,187 13,273 914 6.89% 15.11 938.91
Bellair-Meadowbrook Terrace CDP Clay 13,987 13,343 644 4.83% 4.2 3,330.24
Elfers CDP Pasco 13,982 13,986 -4 -0.03% 3.54 3,949.72
Iona CDP Lee 13,830 15,369 -1,539 -10.01% 6.6 2,095.45
141 Mount Dora Lake 13,818 12,370 1,448 11.71% 8.02 1,722.94
Fruitville CDP Sarasota 13,725 13,224 501 3.79% 6.8 2,018.38
142 Destin Okaloosa 13,654 12,305 1,349 10.96% 7.69 1,775.55
Hobe Sound CDP Martin 13,545 11,521 2,024 17.57% 5.27 2,570.21
143 Atlantic Beach Duval 13,452 12,655 797 6.30% 3.49 3,854.44
144 Palmetto Manatee 13,446 12,606 840 6.66% 5.37 2,503.91
World Golf Village CDP St. Johns 13,323 12,310 1,013 8.23% 26.86 496.02
Thonotosassa CDP Hillsborough 13,292 13,014 278 2.14% 26.5 501.58
Azalea Park CDP Orange 13,287 12,556 731 5.82% 3.18 4,178.30
Middleburg CDP Clay 13,062 13,008 54 0.42% 19.56 667.79
Warrington CDP Escambia 13,053 14,531 -1,478 -10.17% 6.93 1,883.55
145 Key Biscayne village Miami-Dade 13,019 12,344 675 5.47% 1.25 10,415.20
Homosassa Springs CDP Citrus 13,012 13,791 -779 -5.65% 25.14 517.58
146 North Palm Beach village Palm Beach 12,993 12,015 978 8.14% 3.6 3,609.17
147 South Daytona Volusia 12,789 12,252 537 4.38% 3.71 3,447.17
148 Panama City Beach Bay 12,776 12,018 758 6.31% 18.39 694.73
149 Wilton Manors Broward 12,682 11,632 1,050 9.03% 1.96 6,470.41
Goldenrod CDP Orange & Seminole 12,603 12,039 564 4.68% 2.52 5,001.19
Gladeview CDP Miami-Dade 12,525 11,535 990 8.58% 2.56 4,892.58
150 Groveland Lake 12,493 8,729 3,764 43.12% 14.98 833.98
East Milton CDP Santa Rosa 12,490 11,074 1,416 12.79% 28.81 433.53
151 Fernandina Beach Nassau 12,459 11,487 972 8.46% 11.13 1,119.41
Westwood Lakes CDP Miami-Dade 12,449 11,838 611 5.16% 1.64 7,590.85
152 Gulfport Pinellas 12,407 12,029 378 3.14% 2.76 4,495.29
153 Lake City Columbia 12,285 12,046 239 1.98% 12.02 1,022.05
Mango CDP Hillsborough 12,267 11,313 954 8.43% 4.66 2,632.40
Jensen Beach CDP Martin 12,266 11,707 559 4.77% 6.76 1,814.50
154 South Miami Miami-Dade 12,207 11,657 550 4.72% 2.27 5,377.53
155 Holly Hill Volusia 12,142 11,659 483 4.14% 3.93 3,089.57
156 Florida City Miami-Dade 12,078 11,245 833 7.41% 5.95 2,029.92
Hudson CDP Pasco 12,033 12,158 -125 -1.03% 6.32 1,903.96
Cypress Lake CDP Lee 11,964 11,846 118 1.00% 3.86 3,099.48
157 Cocoa Beach Brevard 11,761 11,231 530 4.72% 4.66 2,523.82
Lakeland Highlands CDP Polk 11,728 11,056 672 6.08% 4.85 2,418.14
Yulee CDP Nassau 11,672 11,491 181 1.58% 23.16 503.97
Jupiter Farms CDP Palm Beach 11,514 11,994 -480 -4.00% 14.98 768.62
Lakewood Park CDP St. Lucie 11,511 11,323 188 1.66% 6.65 1,730.98
Doctor Phillips CDP Orange 11,501 10,981 520 4.74% 3.39 3,392.63
158 Orange City Volusia 11,403 10,599 804 7.59% 7.08 1,610.59
Port St. John CDP Brevard 11,335 12,267 -932 -7.60% 3.87 2,928.94
Viera East CDP Brevard 11,264 10,757 507 4.71% 5.07 2,221.70
159 Lantana Palm Beach 11,221 10,423 798 7.66% 2.29 4,900.00
160 Lighthouse Point Broward 11,143 10,344 799 7.72% 2.31 4,823.81
161 Minneola Lake 11,078 9,403 1,675 17.81% 10.34 1,071.37
Goulds CDP Miami-Dade 10,909 10,103 806 7.98% 2.91 3,748.80
Cheval CDP Hillsborough 10,833 10,702 131 1.22% 5.96 1,817.62
162 Satellite Beach Brevard 10,832 10,109 723 7.15% 2.92 3,709.59
Shady Hills CDP Pasco 10,817 11,523 -706 -6.13% 28.57 378.61
Pine Castle CDP Orange 10,796 10,805 -9 -0.08% 2.49 4,335.74
163 Miami Shores village Miami-Dade 10,762 10,493 269 2.56% 2.49 4,322.09
164 Sebring Highlands 10,638 10,491 147 1.40% 9.98 1,065.93
Westview CDP Miami-Dade 10,624 9,650 974 10.09% 3.1 3,427.10
Fairview Shores CDP Orange 10,586 10,239 347 3.39% 3.03 3,493.73
Union Park CDP Orange 10,498 9,765 733 7.51% 3 3,499.33
Key Largo CDP Monroe 10,496 10,433 63 0.60% 12.05 871.04
Trinity CDP Pasco 10,459 10,907 -448 -4.11% 4.62 2,263.85
165 Palatka Putnam 10,452 10,558 -106 -1.00% 8.55 1,222.46
Pine Ridge CDP Citrus County 10,402 9,598 804 8.38% 24.85 418.59
West Perrine CDP Miami-Dade 10,399 8,600 1,799 20.92% 1.7 6,117.06
Gulf Gate Estates CDP Sarasota 10,358 10,911 -553 -5.07% 2.71 3,822.14
166 Cape Canaveral Brevard 10,352 9,912 440 4.44% 2.33 4,442.92
Villas CDP Lee 10,349 11,569 -1,220 -10.55% 4.65 2,225.59
167 Avon Park Highlands 10,259 8,836 1,423 16.10% 7.15 1,434.83
Highland City CDP Polk 10,120 10,834 -714 -6.59% 8.01 1,263.42
Port Salerno CDP Martin 9,999 10,091 -92 -0.91% 3.53 2,832.58

Annual Estimates of the Resident Population: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2016
Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Population Division
Release Dates: For the United States, regions, divisions, states, and Puerto Rico Commonwealth, December 2016. For counties, municipios, metropolitan statistical areas, micropolitan statistical areas, metropolitan divisions, and combined statistical areas, March 2017. For cities and towns (incorporated places and minor civil divisions), May 2017

Qualifying for a Home Loan

Conforming Mortgages

The most popular loan type in Florida is the 30-year fixed rate mortgage. This loan allows buyers to lock in a low interest rate on their loans without having to worry about future uncertainty. 15-year fixed rate mortgages allow homeowners to build equity much faster.

The most common adjustable mortgages are one-, three- and five-year adjustable rate mortgages. These loans keep the same rate for a certain time period and then go up or down depending on current market conditions.

Relatively high real estate prices around the Miami metro area make a large portion of loans jumbo mortgages, as they exceed the conforming limit. As of 2017 the conforming loan limit across the United States is set to $424,100, with a ceiling of 150% that amount in areas where median home values are higher. Jumbo loans typically have a slightly higher rate of interest than conforming mortgages, though spreads vary based on credit market conditions. Here are the conforming mortgage limits in different areas of the state.

County Name Metropolitan Designation 1 Unit Limit 2 Unit Limit 3 Unit Limit 4 Unit Limit
Collier Naples-Immokalee-Marco Island, Fl $450,800 $577,100 $697,600 $866,950
Monroe Key West, Fl $529,000 $677,200 $818,600 $1,017,300

A home equity line of credit (HELOC) can be perfect for people who need to access the equity they have already built in their home. Often used by small business owners, or people that want immediate access to cash for emergencies like home or vehicle repairs, HELOCs work like a credit card where you only pay the interest for the money you borrow.

Down Payments

The amount a home buyer puts down to buy a Florida home is typically 20 percent, but it can vary according to the type of home (single family or condominium), its location and the loan you are seeking. A second mortgage can be a great alternative to only having one loan with property mortgage insurance (PMI). The second loan can be applied to the home’s down payment so PMI is not required. Interest paid on a second mortgage is tax deductible, but the interest rate will be higher than your first mortgage. The secondary loans have a lower priority than a primary mortgage during the foreclosure process, which means the risk of these loans are higher for lenders.

Government Financial Assistance Programs

Federally subsidized loans through the FHA or the VA are available to qualified buyers. These federally insured loans have low interest rates, low down payment requirements & built in mortgage insurance.

USDA loans can help people with low incomes in rural parts of the state qualify for a subsidized low-interest loan.

Assistance Programs for Florida Homebuyers

Many Florida state programs as well as federal programs are available to help low-income individuals, veterans, senior citizens, the disabled as well as rural home buyers in Florida. Check online for information on assistance programs within the specific Florida county where you wish to purchase a home.

Here are just a few of the available housing programs:

Natural Disasters

Flood Insurance

In addition to its warm sunshine, Florida weather can include hurricane winds and flooding of low-lying coastal areas. Even central counties across Florida havea moderate to high risk of flooding. Therefore, many lenders require weather-related insurance. Lenders also are now looking at predicted rises in sea levels due to climate change when they consider insuring oceanfront homes. Here are risk profiles of flooding based on counties across the state.

  • very low risk of flooding: Palm Beach, Sarasota
  • low risk of flooding: Hernando
  • modeate risk of flooding: Alachua, Baker, Brevard, Clay, Columbia, De Soto, Duval, Escambia, Gadsden, Hardee, Highlands, Holmes, Jackson, Jefferson, Lake, Leon, Liberty, Madison, Marion, Okaloosa, Orange, Polk, Saint Lucie, Seminole, Sumter, Union
  • high risk of flooding: Bay, Bradford, Citrus, Flagler, Gilchrist, Glades, Hamilton, Indian River, Nassau, Osceola, Putnam, Suwannee, Volusia, Walton, Washington
  • very high risk of flooding: Broward, Calhoun, Charlotte, Collier, Dixie, Franklin, Gulf, Hendry, Hillsborough, Lafayette, Lee, Levy, Manatee, Martin, Miami-Dade,Monroe, Okeechobee, Pasco, Pinellas, Santa Rosa, Taylor, Wakulla

Florida is also known for having a high risk of damage from hurricanes.

  • very low hurricane storm surge risk: Palm Beach
  • low hurricane storm surge risk: Hardee, Sarasota, Saint Lucie
  • moderate hurricane storm surge risk: Brevard, De Soto, Glades, Highlands, Holmes, Lake, Liberty, Osceola, Sumter, Washington
  • high hurricane storm surge risk: Bay, Calhoun, Duval, Escambia, Gadsden, Hernando, Indian River, Jefferson, Leon, Madison, Marion, Okeechobee, Orange, Polk, Seminole, Volusia, Walton
  • very high hurricane storm surge risk: Alachua, Baker, Broward, Charlotte, Citrus, Clay, Collier, Columbia, Dixie, Flagler, Franklin, Gilchrist, Gulf, Hamilton, Hendry, Hillsborough, Lafayette, Lee, Levy, Manatee, Martin, Miami-Dade, Monroe, Okaloosa, Pasco, Pinellas, Putnam, Saint Johns, Santa Rosa, Suwannee, Taylor, Union, Wakulla

Typically, homes built after 2002, when building code regulations tightened, are subject to lower insurance rates than older homes. On the other hand, homes without hurricane straps, with roofs that do not meet current standards for wind, with older plumbing or with outdated electrical systems may be difficult – or very expensive – to insure.

Low-lying coastal properties may precipitously decline in value if perception of hurricanes or global warming cause people to try to exit before the crash.

If property values start to fall, Cason said, banks could stop writing 30-year mortgages for coastal homes, shrinking the pool of able buyers and sending prices lower still. Those properties make up a quarter of the city’s tax base; if that revenue fell, the city would struggle to provide the services that make it such a desirable place to live, causing more sales and another drop in revenue.

Home buyers with mortgages in high-risk areas are required to buy flood insurance. Most flood insurance policies are sold by the United States federal government through The National Flood Insurance Program. Under-priced flood insurance in high-risk areas act as a subsidy to wealthy homeowners.

The NFIP does not charge nearly enough to cover the expected costs of its liabilities. The assessments are not sufficient to build any buffer to cover an extraordinary year, such as what occurred with Hurricane Katrina in 2005 or Hurricane Sandy in 2012. Because homeowners don’t incur the full cost of building in a flood zone we end up with more houses there than if homeowners incurred the full cost of the flood risk, which exacerbates the government’s costs in the next disaster.

Homeowners who live in lower risk areas & are not required to purchase flood insurance heavily cross-subsidize homeowners who are in areas where floods are more common.

Wildfires

The risk of wildfires is considered moderate to very high across much of the state. Fire damages from wildfires & other types of fires are typically covered in most homeowner's insurance policies. If you own expensive items you may want to keep an up-to-date household inventory list which lists specific valuables, such as fine art & jewelry.

Tornadoes

A couple portions of the state are considered to have a moderate tornado risk: the area slightly north of Tampa on the west coast, along with the eastern cost about half way between Miami and Orlando. A basic homeowners policy should cover financial damages from tornadoes.

Hail

Hail damage is common in the northeast corner of the state & near Orlando. Damage from hail is typically covered by home insurance policies.

State Specific Real Estate Laws

Taxes

While the sunny weather and mild climate are big reasons why many people move to Florida, another big draw is that there is no state income tax. What’s more is that the sales tax rates of Florida’s major cities are lower than those of other large cities in the U.S.

However, property taxes are a primary source of revenue for Florida county and state projects, so it is wise to educate yourself on property tax rates before you purchase a home. Each city and county has its own taxation rates.

The average property assessment across the state is 1.05% which costs $2,936 per year. The Naples-Immokalee-Marcos Island area has the highest average property tax expense across the state at $5,035 per year. The national average property tax rate is 1.24% for a cost of $3,313 per year.

Deed restricted communities

There are many properties in Florida that are governed by a homeowners’ associations. In these situations, all homeowners are subject to association rules and regulations and must pay fees for community maintenance.

For example, homeowner’s associations can restrict how many people live in your home, the pets you have and whether or not you can rent the property to others.

Some retirement communities & golf properties charge massive fees which must be paid anytime someone buys into the community. These in turn depress how much the homes can be sold for. In fact, during the recession some sites like Auction.com were selling properties for as little as $1 as owning them cost many thousands in annual fees and a $40,000 fee to join.

the “$1 condos” require you to pay a non-refundable $10,000 country club membership application fee as well as a $40,000 equity buy-in to join the club. When you sell your unit, you may get back as much as 70 percent of your equity buy-in ($28,000). You are also required to pay annual country club dues of approximately $10,000.

Closing Costs

Florida is a “High Closing Cost” state, which means it is more expensive to close in Florida than in many other states. However, Florida offers lower closing costs than its neighboring states of Georgia and Alabama.

The majority of Florida closing costs are paid to the lender. For example, with the purchase of a $200,000 home, there is an average of $1,800 in closing costs with more than $1,000 of the costs going to the lender. Cash buyers often receive a 50 percent or more discount on closing costs in Florida.

Since the pre-recession housing boom, lenders’ origination fees have decreased considerably and currently average under 1 percent of the loan amount. Some Florida lenders include a document preparation fee and a tax services fee, which usually have a combined total of $100 or less.

Non-lender closing costs can vary according to each particular transaction, but here are the most common ones in the state:

  • Home appraisal – Many lenders require a home appraisal that may range from $300 to $500.
  • Property survey – The cost for a survey that verifies the exact boundaries of the property runs from $350 to $500.
  • Settlement fee — The attorney or title company agent who transfers the property’s title from seller to buyer receives a settlement fee of $350 to $500 in Florida.
  • Home inspection – Many lenders require a home inspection in Florida, with the cost ranging from $100 to $500.
  • Additional closing costs – at about $100 each — may include a courier fee, a credit report fee and a flood certification fee.

Florida law requires that sellers disclose any facts or conditions about their property that may affect its value such as:

  • appliances included in sale and their state of repair
  • any defects in the electrical, plumbing or other systems
  • presence of potentially harmful conditions such as asbestos or termites
  • homeowners’ association fees and any deed restrictions

Sellers of houses built before 1978 must comply with federal law regarding lead-based paint.

Working with a Lawyer

Florida does not require that buyers engage a lawyer in a home purchase.

Homestead State

Florida is a Homestead State, which means that if your new home will serve as your primary residence, you can file for an exemption worth up to $50,000.  This exemption lowers the amount of property taxes you are required to pay and limits the amount those taxes will go up each year.

Foreclosures

In Florida, the foreclosure process is a judicial proceeding that can take a year or more to complete.

The lender initiates the foreclosure process by filing a written complaint with the state court that is then served to the borrower together with a summons that specifies that the borrower respond within 20 days. If the borrower does not respond within that period, the lender can get a default judgment from the court.

If the borrower does respond, the lender then will either file a motion of summary judgment or go to trial with the case. The court will grant a summary judgment in favor of the lender when there is no dispute on the important facts of the case.