As Florida home prices rise, middle-class residents wonder if they can afford to stay
Amid a surge in demand from out-of-state buyers, limited inventory, and booming neighborhood redevelopment, the Sunshine State is quickly becoming one of the least affordable places to live in the United States, a trend that is straining first-time buyers and renters even as long-time homeowners reap a windfall of equity. Over the past six months, home prices in Florida have risen faster than those in any other state, according to a Washington Post analysis of Zillow data. As housing markets elsewhere have cooled, home prices in Florida have soared in the national rankings. [Source: Washington Post]
Relief or “poor tax”? Companies offer alternative to apartment security deposits for Florida renters
As rents soar, startups are touting what they see as a helpful solution to the hefty security deposits that make Floridians pay for apartments. Instead of paying an upfront security deposit, tenants can agree to pay a monthly fee, usually around $25. But there’s a catch: the money isn’t refundable at the end of the lease like a traditional security deposit, and tenants are still liable for damages beyond ordinary wear and tear. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]
Surfside condo collapse prompts Fannie Mae to toughen lending standards on older buildings
Buying a condo in an old South Florida skyscraper? For people who want to finance their transaction, it will be increasingly difficult to take out a loan guaranteed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, the government-sponsored companies that offer mortgages to low-to-moderate income borrowers. Reacting to the tragic collapse of Champlain Tower South in Surfside last year, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the two companies that back the majority of residential mortgages in the United States, are looking at deferred maintenance issues in condos before to approve loans generated by banks and other lenders. [Source: South Florida Sun Sentinel]
Realtor takes to the water to show South Florida mansions
On a recent Saturday afternoon, real estate agent Bonnie Heatzig accompanied her clients, visiting from Washington, DC, on a tour of luxury properties in Boca Raton. But instead of getting in his car for the start of the tour, they jumped into his family’s boat for a sunny two-hour ride around Boca’s waterways and exclusive waterfront mansions. His clients were all smiles as they talked about which homes offered the best views and had the most potential to live in. [Source: AP]
Miami-Dade County is tied with six other markets with populations over 250,000 for having the strongest commercial real estate market conditions in the nation, according to research released today by the National Association of Realtors. Miami-Dade tied with the census metropolitan divisions covering Tampa and Florida’s Fort Myers with the highest index score of 76. office, commercial, and industrial. Also marks 76: Charleston, South Carolina; Durham, North Carolina; Kennewick-Richland, Washington; and Nashville, Tennessee. [Source: South Florida Business Journal]
› Blackstone bets on affordable housing in South Florida with a portfolio of over $300 million
Blackstone Real Estate Income Trust has gone all out on affordable housing in South Florida, scooping up more than a dozen apartment communities for over $300 million. The New York-based Blackstone Trust, through various affiliates, purchased 13 properties from entities related to Hollywood-based The Cornerstone Group, records show.
› The “affordability crisis” is forcing more Jacksonville-area residents out of rental housing
Florida home prices have soared in the national rankings, overtaking states like Minnesota and Connecticut. The price of rent is following close behind and has created what economists call an affordability crisis, a crisis that local tenants are struggling to do their best to.
› Manatee, Sarasota’s real estate market ends 2021 on a record high
More than $15 billion changed hands in residential real estate transactions in Manatee and Sarasota counties in 2021, a year that included prices that soared to all-time highs while the number of completed sales still succeeded to exceed the levels set a year ago.
› Oceanside spec home in Palm Beach sold for $57 million
An oceanfront home in the Tony Estate section of Palm Beach has sold for $57 million. The 12,427-square-foot mansion, sitting on just under an acre and located at 916 South Ocean Blvd, just across A1A from the ocean, was purchased through a limited company Limited, Mawa 916 LLC on Dec. 30, and is the second-largest sale in Palm Beach in the past six months, according to property records.
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