I just received yet another e-mail on a new construction project; this one is coming to Coral Gables. It seems hard to believe that we went through a MAJOR real estate crash, with many of our prominent developers themselves involved in foreclosures of their projects, just a few years ago. It also seems hard to believe that there are so many new developments selling their projects, when foreclosure activity in Florida is leading the nation. Is this a contradiction in the real estate market, setting us up for another dip? Not necessarily.
New projects extend from the Gables all the way north to the Broward county line. They cover Coconut Grove, Brickell/Downtown, Midtown, South Beach, Mid Beach, North Miami Beach, and Aventura. Pricing starts from the low $200,000’s in the Gables to the several million for those projects in the Grove, Miami Beach and Aventura. Based on what I am seeing, buyers are definitely leaning toward newer, more modern buildings and inventory in newer buildings is extremely tight. Builders are using a formula more commonly used in South America, where there is no financing, and the buyer pays a significant amount of money down at various stages of the construction process. The range in starting prices, demand for new buildings and the new purchasing requirements make for a bit more stability than the previous building boom.
What does all of this new construction mean if you are a buyer? It means that you will have more options in a given price range. You will be able to choose between existing units where you know exactly what you are getting and one that is under construction that you can finish to your specifications. Check to see how many new projects are going up in the area you are looking in and what the price ranges in the different development are. Too much supply of the same type of property could point to price decreases or stagnation.
If you are a seller of an older property in an area where new projects are going up, it means you will be competing with projects that are newer and offer more amenities than yours. Make sure you know your competition and highlight your property’s positive attributes. Many older units tend to be larger or offer more closet space than many of the newer construction projects.