At Keller Williams we pride ourselves on watching the market very carefully to be able to advise our clients to the best of our ability. To that end I’ve been examining the economic outlook for Broward County and its impact on both our residential and commercial real estate market.
Demand and rents soar
Growing payroll and a new wave of relocations from outside Florida are major contributing factors to a thriving multi-family sector in Broward County. This year more than 18,500 new jobs were created in Broward County; mostly in the private sector.
Tenant demand continues to rise in the midst of a new construction cycle, forcing rents upward throughout our market.
For the first time since 2000 there is a short supply of single-family houses and apartments for rent.
Related Group—which is the largest development company in the region—has plans that include more than $1-billion in new development for thousands of apartments in Davie, Pembroke Pines, Plantation and Fort Lauderdale. Nearly 900 units are being developed in the Fort Lauderdale sub-market.
Vacancy rates in the county are around 4.7%. The Broward County apartment sector ended the third quarter of 2014 with the second lowest vacancy rate among the three South Florida counties. The average rent is projected to go up to $1,311 per month.
Capital continues to rush into the apartment sector. Small private investors are dominant in the market thanks to acquisition debt available at higher leverage.
Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac continue to underwrite 5, 7 and 10 year loans and offer maximum leverage of at least 80% in most markets. The interest rates are historically low.
Here is some other important information: Do you know that in October, the Fort Lauderdale metropolitan area was named a hot spot among the nation’s top college towns for multi-family investment?
We’ve got incredible opportunity for growth in Fort Lauderdale. I believe that in six to seven years Fort Lauderdale will be one of the hottest areas in the country.
Why are these statistics important? Because I want to convey to my clients that whether they are considering a house to live in, or an acquisition of an investment property, that we will be facing a housing shortage in a few years. Today’s interest rates could not be more attractive and prices here in Fort Lauderdale and Broward County are still remarkably affordable.