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New study: growing demand for urban living

b_200_0_16777215_00_images_stories_mercado_Sept_2011_urban_living_1.jpgDowntown Miami’s appeal as one of the nation’s most viable residential real estate markets remains strong amid global economic volatility, according to a new study by the Miami Downtown Development Authority.

The report, which was conducted in the second quarter of 2011, finds that sales activity is stabilizing and prices are rising as condominium supply diminishes following Miami’s most recent construction boom. Of the more than 22,000 condominium units initially built since 2003, only 4,200 units remain unsold, and year-over-year pricing has risen 5% as demand outpaces supply.

b_200_0_16777215_00_images_stories_mercado_Sept_2011_urban_living_2.jpgThe report also finds that downtown Miami’s rental market remains among the nation’s most active, a reflection of the heightened demand for urban living.  Year-over-year, leasing activity rose 11% in the second quarter of 2011 and average pricing for rentals was 7% higher than the year prior.

“The downtown Miami market is outpacing even the most optimistic projections,” said Alyce Robertson, executive director of the Miami DDA. “The fact that it is doing so, despite economic volatility, points to the growing appeal of urban living.”

Downtown Miami is currently home to more than 70,000 residents, up more than 80% from 10 years ago.

The population is expected to grow to 85,000 by 2014 as the remainder of the new housing inventory is absorbed. According to the report, assuming continuation of sales pace, the remaining unsold inventory could be sold-out in 32 months, the report finds.

b_200_0_16777215_00_images_stories_mercado_Sept_2011_urban_living_3.gifOn the heels of this residential uptick, foreign developers are realizing Downtown Miami’s potential as an international destination and are investing billions in large-scale, mixed-use development projects that will bring world-class amenities including entertainment, hotel, retail, and residential component. These include Genting Malaysia Berhad’s Resorts World Miami; Brickell CitiCentre, being developed by Hong Kong-based subsidiary Swire Properties; and 1400 Biscayne Center, to be developed by Madrid-based subsidiary Espacio USA. “Downtown Miami continues to attract investors thanks to the quality and affordability of the assets in our market,” said City of Miami Commissioner Marc D. Sarnoff, Chairman of the Miami DDA. “As a result of the investments made here, and growing appeal for the area among new residents, a wonderful community has formed and a world-class city is emerging.”

About the 2011 Q2 Market Trend Update

The 2011 Q2 Market Trend Update surveyed sales and leasing rates for 76 completed condo buildings and eight rental apartment buildings that have come online in the Downtown Miami area since 2003, accounting for a total of 23,628 residential units. The buildings surveyed are all located within the area bounded by State Road 195 on the north, Interstate 95 on the west, the Rickenbacker Causeway on the south, and Biscayne Bay on the east. The report is a quarterly survey conducted during the second quarter of 2011.

By Schwartz Media. Miami

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