Are you thinking about buying a home in South Tampa, Florida? The South Tampa real estate market is exciting and unique.
Due to Tampa’s impressive economic growth and thriving job market, housing demand continues to rise in one of Florida’s most popular areas.
Although the basics of home buying remain the same across all markets, home prices in South Tampa are slightly higher than in other areas due to the demand.
Still, the South Tampa market favors buyers, and purchasing in this famous city is possible with the right strategy.
If you have your heart set on the Tampa Bay area, here is everything you need to know before you buy.
South Tampa is one of the oldest and most culturally significant parts of Tampa, Florida, encompassing a region that includes several popular neighborhoods.
Located on the Interbay Peninsula, South Tampa consists of the following communities:
- Beach Park
- Ballast Point
- Bayshore Beautiful
- Bayshore Gardens
- Bayside West
The history of South Tampa is relatively new, with the area only having been developed around the start of the 20th century.
At the turn of the century, Tampa’s population was only around 16,000, with plenty of room to expand. Although the times were different, the desire to buy or build by the water was still in high demand. With plenty of room to expand, developers got to work building beautiful homes for Florida’s elite.
During the early 1920s, many Northerner speculators and tourists flocked to Tampa Bay.
South Tampa became a popular place to settle, giving rise to a building boom before the real estate market collapsed in 1926. Still, even with the market's decline, the Tampa Bay area managed to hold its own.
Like most of the United States, Tampa took a hard hit during the Great Depression of the 1930s.
Its most popular business industry, cigar manufacturing, went into a sharp decline which closed many factories and changed the city’s economic makeup for good. American involvement in World War II sparked a much-needed rise in Tampa’s economic growth.
However, the area hit another roadblock in the 1950s and 1960s as residents and businesses moved to the suburbs, resulting in the deterioration of Tampa’s downtown area.
Tampa’s urban renewal program in the 1970s and 1980s was the start of the city’s rise towards today’s current success.
Downtown Tampa soon became the site of new office buildings, stores, convention centers, and even stadiums. The local economy began to flourish again, and relocations in the 1990s began to pick up. Today, Tampa continues to be an urban goldmine that is expected to continue serving a vital role in the country’s future.
The self-proclaimed city “where the good life gets better every day,” Tampa is a great place to invest in property if you can compete against the high demand in its local real estate market.
Popular Home Types/Styles
When most buyers look for the right home, they consider the number of bedrooms and bathrooms available. However, buying a home requires much more consideration than choosing square footage. A large part of your decision should depend on style.
When it comes to the type of architecture used to build your home, even the floor plans are impacted. Luckily, South Tampa features various styles to fit a wide range of buyer needs.
The most popular include:
Influenced by countries around the Mediterranean Sea, homes of this style feature courtyards, small room balconies, and stucco finishes.
Tiled roofs typically found in Mediterranean homes create an air pocket between shingles that naturally cool your home during the hot summer months.
This, combined with the fact that these structures are reminiscent of warm homes built near water, make Mediterranean architecture popular in South Tampa.
If you prefer a deeper connection with the outdoors, contemporary architecture creates a spaciousness many Tampa Bay residents crave.
Using natural components and sustainable materials, contemporary homes take advantage of natural light that warms and brightens the home.
In today’s market, contemporary homes encompass a diverse array of styles and influences.
As with many other popular areas of Florida, ranch-style homes are also popular in South Tampa.
Models a more casual look, these single-story structures emphasize private back yards with their U or L-shaped architecture. If you’re looking for a more cozy and efficient home, the low-profile ranch is a great fit.
Although modern architecture is often confused with contemporary houses, modern homes reflect the modernist art movement.
Showcasing open living spaces, technologically-advanced amenities, and geometric lives, these homes provide the pleasure of more space.
If you love open floor places, look for modern architecture in the Tampa Bay area.
Average Home Prices
As of April 1, 2022, the average single family home in South Tampa averaged $935,064, which marks a 13.1% rise over the past year. This is significantly higher than the typical home value of $356,349 in Florida and the National average of $331,533.
Below is our monthly real estate snapshot for South Tampa, as of April 1, 2022.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the population of Tampa, Florida, in 2020 was 384,959.
This is a significant rise from the recorded population of 16,000 in the 1920s.
Popular Restaurants in South Tampa
Due to the area's cultural diversity, Tampa Bay’s culinary scene is remarkable.
With such an enormous tourist population frequenting the area, residents and visitors love to explore the local restaurants. Tampa Bay offers delicious culinary options in nearly every food category imaginable, from fine dining and healthy options to wings and burgers.
Check out some of these popular choices from Tampa Magazine’s recent 2022 Best Restaurant List:
Best Beach Restaurant
Frenchy’s Rockaway Grille
Best Breakfast Joint
Best Chinese Restaurant
Best Coffee Shop
2-way tie between Buddy Brew Coffee and Willa’s Provisions
Best Cuban Sandwich
Best Cuban/Latin American/Spanish Restaurant
Best Deli/Sandwich Shop
Wright’s Gourmet House
2-way tie between Goody Goody and Metro Diner
Best Fine Dining Restaurant
Bern’s Steak House
Best Fusion Restaurant
Best Greek/Mediterranean Restaurant
Acropolis Greek Taverna
Best Health-Conscious Restaurant
Best Indian Restaurant
Best Italian Restaurant
Best Japanese Restaurant
Kobe Japanese Steakhouse
Best Mexican Restaurant
Miguel’s Mexican Seafood and Grill
Best Middle Eastern Restaurant
Best New Restaurant
Best Pizza Place
Eddie & Sam’s N.Y. Pizza
Best Rooftop Dining
The 360° Rooftop Lounge at The Hotel Zamora
Best Seafood Restaurant
2-way tie between Ocean Prime and Salt Shack on the Bay
Best Southern Cuisine
Bern’s Steak House
Best Thai Restaurant
Lemon Grass Thai Kitchen
Best Uniquely Tampa Restaurant
Bern’s Steak House
Best Vietnamese Restaurant
2-way tie between Bamboozle Cafe and Pho 813
Best Waterfront Restaurant
Best Weekend Brunch
Popular Parks in South Tampa
South Tampa also offers several beautiful community parks and playgrounds, whether you’re looking to walk off your dinner or find a place for the kids to play.
If you’re looking to enjoy the great outdoors or take a stroll by the water, check out one of these parks:
Cypress Point Park: 5620 W. Cypress St., Tampa, FL 33607
Friendship Park: 4124 W Bay to Bay Blvd., Tampa, FL 33629
The Tampa Riverwalk: 200 N Ashley Dr., Tampa, FL 33602
Julian B. Lane Riverfront Park: 1001 N Blvd., Tampa, FL 33606
A.J. Palonis Jr. Park: 5123 Gandy Blvd., Tampa, FL 33611
According to Tampa Bay Parenting, some great kid-friendly options include:
Ballast Point Park: 5300 Interbay Blvd., Tampa, FL 33611
Glencliff Park: 12292 Glencliff Cir., Westchase, FL 33626
American Legion Park: 106 E Sligh Ave., Tampa, FL 33604
RE Olds Park: 107 Shore Dr. W., Oldsmar, FL
Highlander Park (Kiwanis Sprayground): 1940 Ed Eckert Dr. Dunedin, FL 34698
The Tampa Bay area has a humid subtropical climate with two primary seasons. It closely borders a tropical monsoon climate near the waterfront areas.
The two primary seasons in Tampa Bay are the hot and wet seasons.
The local weather in May through October is typically scattered with rain, with temperatures ranging averaging between 90s °F and mid-70s °F.
Thunderstorms are also common, especially in the afternoons. November through April offers a mild, dry season with sunny days marked by a general cooling trend through the Fall. Highs during the coolest part of the winter season average around 70°F.
The occasional passage of a cold front can bring a few days of cooler weather, but lows rarely reach freezing temperatures.
Schools and Universities
According to Great Schools, South Tampa Elementary Schools fall above average Nationally. Most South Tampa Middle and High Schools also fall in the average to the above-average range.
Universities in Tampa, FL include:
- South University, Tampa
- Schiller International University
- University of South Florida
- The University of Tampa
The Tampa Bay Times ranks the following companies and organizations as the area’s top 10 workplaces for 2021:
- Grow Financial Federal Credit Union
- KnowBe4 Inc.
- Progressive Insurance
- Paramount Residential Mortgage Group, Inc.
- Capital One Financial Corporation
- Parallon-Tampa Shared Services
- Power Design Inc.
- CAE USA Inc.
- Raymond James Financial, Inc.
The largest employers include:
- Hillsborough County School District
- MacDill Air Force Base
- Verizon Communications
- University of South Florida
- Hillsborough County Government
- Tampa International Airport
- James A. Haley Veterans Hospital
- St. Joseph’s Hospital
- J.P. Morgan
- Publix Supermarkets
- City of Tampa
- U.S. Postal Service
In the earlier 20th century, Tampa was undoubtedly a one-industry town known for its cigar manufacturing.
Today, Tampa celebrates a diversified economic base that includes the production of the following items and goods:
- Electronic equipment
- Medical equipment
- Fabricated steel
- Citrus products
- Processed shrimp
- Decorative plants
Tampa’s economy benefits significantly from its airports, and the city has attained its status as a foreign trade zone. As such, goods can be unloaded for repacking, storage, or transshipment without being subject to import duties.
Professional and business service industries employ the highest number of Tampa residents, followed by:
- Trade, transportation, and utilities
- Education and health services
- Leisure and hospitality
- Financial activities
- Other Services
New Businesses Coming to the Area
The surge in demand for commercial real estate throughout Tampa has been remarkable.
There’s a lot to expect with new stores and restaurants opening across Tampa in 2022, from brand new restaurants to exciting shops and wellness brands. Here’s a look of up and coming businesses to watch for in the area:
- Chill Bros. Scoop Shop
- Small Giant Bar and Restaurant
- Wine on Water
- Naked Farmer
- Orangetheory Fitness
- 3 Corners
- Shortwave Coffee
- Noble Rice
- Bodyrok and The Covery
- Warby Parker
- Public Studio
- DRNK coffee + tea
- Qwench juice bar
- The Biostation
Things to Do
According to the South Tampa Chamber of Commerce, the top 10 things to do in the area include:
- Take a stroll along the world's longest continuous sidewalk. Enjoy a sunrise run, watch the dolphins play, or admire the local architecture.
- Dress like a pirate and head to one of Tampa’s old historical events. Every year, these attract thousands to Bayshore Boulevard for the “Parade of Pirates.” Check out gasparillapiratefest.com for more information.
- Take a " SoHo " foodie tour while enjoying South Tampa’s beautiful weather. Watch the Florida sunset from the rooftop of the Epicurean Hotel or Bulla Gastrobar before heading to dinner at the world-famous Bern’s Steakhouse.
- If you’re a college football fan, check out a local game. A popular New Year’s Day tradition is the annual Outback Bowl.
- Shop along Bay to Bay Boulevard and South MacDill Avenue to hit some unique boutiques and one of the local specialty food stores.
- Take a photo in front of the famous minarets at the University of Tampa. While you are on campus, visit the Henry B. Plant Museum, which is now a National Historic Landmark.
- If you love the arts, live shows are featured throughout the year at the David A. Starz Centre for the Performing Arts, Stageworks Theater and Powerstories.
- Check out one of the well-known Tampa museums, including the Tampa Bay History Center, Florida Museum of Photographic Arts, and the Glazier Children’s Museum.
- Enjoy a professional sports game from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Lightning, or Rays. You can also stop by the spring training facility for the New York Yankees.
- Explore one of the more than a dozen parks in South Tampa.
Explore one of South Tampa’s exciting performing arts theaters, including:
- Straz Center for Performing Arts- 1010 N. W. C. MacInnes Place, Tampa, FL 33602
- Carrollwood Players Theater- 4333 Gunn Highway, Tampa, FL 33634
- Tampa Bay Triple Threat Theater- 15906 Mapledal Blvd. Tampa, FL 33624
- Tampa Bay Underground Film Festival
- The Space at 2106- 2106 W. Main Street, Tampa, FL 33607
Look up one of the most popular health clubs, gyms, and personal trainers in South Tampa, including:
- Bayshore Fit
- Harbour Island Athletic Club & Spa
- Hotwork South Tampa
- Palma Ceia Fit Body Boot Camp
- South Tampa Family YMCA
- The Forge 24/7 Fitness
Tampa, Florida, is home to several well-known museums, a great place to visit on a rainy day. According to TripAdvisor, the top ten include:
- Glazer Children’s Museum
- Henry B. Plant Museum
- Tampa Bay History Center
- Museum of Science and Industry
- SS American Victory Mariners’ Memorial and Museum
- Tampa Museum of Art
- Ybor City Museum State Park
- Florida Museum of Photographic Arts
- Tampa Firefighters Museum
- Phoenix Glass Studio and Gott Glass Gallery
Learn more about locations, entry fees, and upcoming events at these museums here.
South Tampa offers some great shopping opportunities, from specialty food shops to unique boutiques. Explore a list of retail shops and services here.
If you are an avid sports fan, be sure to check out a game at one of the following famous stadiums and arenas:
- Amalie Arena- Home of the NHL Tampa Bay Lightning and AFL Tampa Bay Storm teams
- Steinbrenner Field- Home of the MLB New York Yankees spring games and Florida State League Tampa Yankees
- Raymond James Stadium- Home of the NFL Tampa Bay Buccaneers
- University of South Florida Sun Dome- Home of the USF Bulls
- Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg- Home of the MLB Tampa Bay Rays
Trails (Hiking and Biking)
Are you looking for the best hiking and biking trails around Tampa? Choose from a list of more than 31 trails in the area here.
Check out a wide variety of upcoming local events here.
In addition to its parks, museum, and sports arenas, Tampa is also known for the following landmarks:
- Sunshine Skyway Bridge
- Tampa Riverwalk
- Ybor City
- Sacred Heart Catholic Church
- Wat Mongkolrata Temple
- Hyde Park
- East Bay Raceway Park
- Tampa Union Station
- 9/11 Fallen Heroes Memorial
According to Neighborhood Scout, Tampa is safer than 25% of United States cities.
Tampa has a crime rate of 22 crimes per one thousand residents. While this is higher than 66% of Florida’s cities and towns, it is noticeably lower compared to other communities of similar population sizes. You can find an up-to-date, interactive crime map on the city’s website here.
Exploring the Possibilities of Purchasing South Tampa, FL Real Estate Property?
Now that you know the ins and outs of South Tampa, it’s time to explore the local market.
As the experts in South Tampa real estate, we’re here to help you find a neighborhood that fits your needs.
Our brokerage specializes in residential and commercial sales in the South Tampa. We’d love to help you find your perfect property.
Contact me to discuss your options and explore the opportunities waiting for you in South Tampa.