Saturday, May 03, 2008

Miami Real Estate Market Update

Every day when we read, hear or watch the news, we are bombarded with negative and distressing news stories. In particular, the bad press about the real estate business seems to be all you hear. You cannot go about your daily life without hearing about some sort of bad news about real estate, and Miami is often mentioned in these stories. But we need to be more area-specific when we discuss the "Miami Market". While there are definitely areas in Miami that are struggling and may continue to struggle, there are some very bright spots that no one, except for most who are actually in the real estate business, talk about. Here are some updates on the Miami Beach and Miami Market. First Miami Beach:

  1. WCI Communities have closed 90% of their condo units at One Bal Harbour. Wow, how could that be when, according to the cynics and pessimists, condo prices are plummeting and not selling? Sales at One Bal Harbour have ranged from $1,150,000 to, what I hear from the developer, the $11 million penthouse. There are currently 35 sales in the MLS currently pending or closed. This building is a great determination of how the market is doing. PERIOD! I think this gives us every reason to be highly optimistic about the market.

  2. We all agree that last year was a slow year. Yet, there were 170 closed deals on Miami Beach in the condo market over 1 million dollars in asking price.

  3. The Continuum was averaging over $1,095 per square foot, with a high of $1,495 per square foot. Last year the building had an average sale price of $2,711,190, with the highest sale being $6,500,000. There were a total of 21 sales.

  4. The Setai is averaging a whopping $1,634 per square foot, with a high of $2,301 per square foot and there were a total of 15 sales with the highest being $6,000,000.

  5. The Murano had 28 sales with an average price per square foot of $755 and the high of $929 per square foot. The highest sale in the building was $3,100,000.

  6. Next door to the Murano, the Icon South Beach had 19 sales with an average price per square foot of $845 and a high of $1,049. The highest sale in the building was $1,945,000.

  7. The Apogee South Beach Units started at $2,500,000.00 in presales and I have heard the building is doing very well. There are currently 4 resales in the MLS starting at $3,999 to $6,599.

  8. Going out of South Beach we can look at the Blue and Green Diamonds. Known for their incredible views and great Mid-Beach location they had 36 closed sales in total with an average price per square foot at $640k and the high of $1,100 per square foot. The highest sale in the buildings was $3,070,000.

  9. There are deals to be made right now. For example The Bath Club has direct ocean, flow through units for an asking price of $659 per square foot. The Green Diamond #2801 for $1,325,000.00 which is $659 per square foot for an amazing SE corner unit with unobstructed city and ocean views. There are plenty of other opportunities - just let us know what you are looking for and we can send you a list of what may fit your criteria.

  10. In Miami Beach we have been seeing levels of inventory drop. This is due to the fact that most international and even domestic buyers (from the north) want to be on or close to the beach. With the strength of the Euro and the Canadian dollar almost equal to our dollar most of the buyers want to see or be on the beach. With that being said, South Beach continues to be the destination for the rich and famous. Where else can you average 75 degree temperatures all year around? I think we will only continue to see the shrinking of properties between Miami Beach and Miami as more and more units flow into the market place on the other side of the Bay.

Enough said about Miami Beach, let's look now at the Brickell Area. While Brickell's going through some hiccups in the market right now, from all we can tell the markets are still somewhat healthy. There are foreclosure problems in some of the buildings but these can be very good opportunities but be careful - not all. Where else can you find a 2 bedroom in a good building with great amenities for under $300k? There are several opportunities like this. The rest of the market is still surviving with units located directly on Brickell Avenue or bordering the bay still holding fair. You can get prices now that seem to resemble a price of 2004. Many of the projects that have closed recently have done very well. You may have also have heard in the news that The Related Group's Mr. Jorge Perez is putting together a $1 billion dollar fund to buy condos. Also, with the Latin American buyers and investors knowing the Brickell Area they are beginning again to be interested in purchasing in the Brickell area. Here is a sample of properties and how they are doing.

  1. The Santa Maria had 9 closings last year with an average price per square foot of $707 and the high sale of $5,325,000 at $845 per square foot.

  2. The Four Seasons had 5 sales last year with a average price per square foot of $713, the highest sale of $3,175,000 and the highest price per square foot of $913.

  3. The Jade Brickell Bay with all its "foreclosure problems" still managed 12 sales in the last year with an average price per square foot of $667 and the high sale of $2,250,000 which comes out to $967 per square foot. Wow! As many of you have asked, I still believe this is a luxury building and is still very desirable to the luxury Brickell buyer, with the views, amenities and bay front location to survive with flying colors.

  4. The Carbonell on Brickell Key last year had 15 sales with an average price per square foot of $476 and the high sale of $1,550,000 with a price per square foot of $598. Some units we sold here were "decorator ready".

  5. The Atlantis on Brickell had 4 sales with an average price per square foot of $296

  6. The Palace On Brickell had 6 sales with an average price per square foot of $353

  7. The Metropolitan on Brickell had 3 sales with an average price per square foot of $366

Most of our listings for rent were leased very quickly. There are many factors why rentals are doing so well. Some include the lack of rental buildings, requirements of banks lending to a buyer, and of course the future buyers who are waiting to see when we hit the bottom, if we have not done it already. Skeptics beware; this is a huge market which is why the majority of properties available are under $500k.

Sellers if you are priced right, you will still sell in this market so it's important to start off right away with a very aggressive price, otherwise you just get lost in the numbers. You also need a highly knowledgeable Realtor that has the tools and expertise to successfully market your property. As you can see there is still plenty of activity here and Miami has so much to offer it will always be a highly desirable place to live and own property. Call us for a free market evaluation of your property.

If you own property in Miami and would like to find out more about sales trends in your community or condominium please feel free to call us with no obligation.

You can also visit our website at to research new buildings, read articles or search the MLS for all available properties in the area.

Kenny Raymond (786) 594-3851

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