Real estate industry observers have noted that more foreign investors than ever are investing in the U.S. real estate market due to low interest rates and bargain prices available in cities such as Miami and New York, Los Angeles and Phoenix, which should encourage Americans to take their lead and do the same.
Investors from around the world, including countries as diverse as Argentina, Canada, Colombia, France, Israel, Italy, Norway and Venezuela account for many of the sales in Miami this year. For instance, it was noted in one report that 262 of the 372 condos in the Viceroy, a new condo tower on Brickell Avenue in Miami, have been sold since January—almost 90 percent to foreigners. The same trend has been seen in cities across the country too.
According to one report, the low prices have spurred foreign investors to invest in the U.S. real estate market rather than the stock market, figuring the chance for eventually seeing sizable profits is much higher with real estate. As one Canadian investor explained it, he is interested in buying condo developments in good Phoenix neighborhoods. He is looking for condos in good neighborhoods that already have renters, and is finding them priced as low as $40,000. He said those prices are much lower in Phoenix than in Toronto, and he expects to be able to sell them for much more than he paid when the economy turns around. In the meantime, he figures he is making as much as $300 per month in profit on each condo.
Latin American investors have traditionally been attracted to cities such as Miami, and the low prices available there now are providing further encouragement. Miami is a short and inexpensive plane ride away from Bogota, Colombia, and one investor from that city said she would rather buy property in Miami than Bogota because her return on investment will be much higher in this country. Property prices in Miami in particular have been cut nearly in half since the high point of the building boom in 2007. But the foreign investors, who buy using the traditional method as well at real estate auctions, are obviously confident that the economy will turn around in the near future. They expect to be able to get a good return on their investment when prices return to a more normal level.
Nationwide, overseas buyers still only account for about 7 percent of real estate sales, but they are seen as having an overall positive effect on the U.S real estate market. Their numbers are increasing in many cities also. Purchases by China-based buyers are expected to double this year in New York, for instance.
If you are looking for a low-maintenance lifestyle, maybe in a popular downtown location or near the beach there is no better place to look than Miami Condos. Living in a condo in Miami can offer many benefits that you will not find in a home in the suburbs. They can offer more plentiful amenities from beach access, pools, golf courses, lawn maintenance and much more. All of these things offer a different lifestyle that many find appealing but there are a few things you might want to consider.
- Condos usually have an association that has guidelines, some may be casual but others can be strictly enforced. Get a copy of the rules and guidelines and make sure they will fit in with your lifestyle. Being at odds with the association and possibly your neighbors can make home a much less appealing place to live.
- Many Miami condos come with a variety of benefits but also a cost. Most associations have fees that cover many of the amenities which convinced you to entertain the idea of condo living in the first place. Some associations charge a small maintenance fee to cover the basics but depending on the extravagance of what are offered in your complex they can run much higher. Associations are anxious to provide you with their list of fees, what they cover, and what is expected of you as an owner. One last thing to consider regarding fees is to find out if the association is planning on any improvements or upgrades that can raise costs.
- Before you jump at that Miami condo find out about the community you are buying into. Does it fit the lifestyle you want? What is the financial status of the condo association? How many units are vacant? How many units are rented? If possible, talk to some of the owners and find out if they are happy living there, how well the complex is being run, or if they have had past problems and how those problems were resolved. You are buying into an entire community and it is important that you know all you can before making a decision.
There are many Miami condos in all types of locales from downtown Miami to Coconut Grove to Key Biscayne offering something no matter your taste or budget. No matter if you are retiring to south Florida to sit on the beach or find a vacation property there can be no more exciting location than Miami.
Let’s be honest. The national real estate market is certainly facing its challenges and the Miami Real Estate market is no different but there are some reasons to be optimistic about what is happening across the nation and more specifically in the Miami market. The lack of new developments has helped to slow a glut in the housing and condo markets for Miami and we are beginning to see prices stabilize. I am hearing from many potential condo buyers that they expected a big collapse in prices so they could pick up a condo cheap but they now think that collapse may already have happened and prices are stabilizing or may even be starting an upward trend. We could very well be at the bottom of the housing market which means there is no way to go but up encouraging buyers to get in the market for those great deals before they are all gone.
Market trends can change fairly dramatically and quickly due to several contributing factors. The Miami real estate market is no different than any other area of the country and trends are an aspect that must be considered no matter if you are a first-time homebuyer or seasoned purchaser. Knowing where the market is headed and the overall conditions are a very crucial part of making a smart decision.
For many months the Miami real estate market has been showing signs of recovery. This can be the perfect time for buyers to enter the market looking for distressed homes and we are seeing an increasing number every day looking for short sales, foreclosures or just a motivated seller needing to move their home or condo. With home prices continuing to drop in all areas of the country including Miami, many buyers are looking for the best deals they can find.
Access to properties has also made it easier for home buyers to find just the right deal. Many properties are still being listed in magazines, newsletters, and other forms of publication but most homebuyers find it easier to look online. Information that was once limited to the general public is now available quickly and easily providing many homeowners alternatives in buying or selling a home or condo.
Obviously we are not quite out of the woods yet regarding the real estate market but at least now we see some light at the end of the tunnel. The real estate industry is used to cycles but this time around we would like to see the down side turn much quicker to the up side.
Working at OwnACondo.com, people often tell us why they decided to buy a condo or house at this time, and here is just such a homebuyer’s story.
Joan had moved around a bit after college, going where the jobs took here, to Boston and elsewhere. Now that she is back in the Chicago area, she decided that she had enough of apartment living. She heard a lot of gloom and doom from people who said this was not a good time to buy, but she had realized that now really is a good time. After all, she figured, as hard to believe at it is, we have 1963 mortgage rates. Imagine, getting a loan for the same interest that it would have cost almost 50 years ago. That is a hard deal to pass up. Of course the prices of homes have multiplied since then, but so have wages and everything else. But you can still borrow money at the same rate as when John F. Kennedy was president.
Besides the price of the loan, a homebuyer’s story also has to consider house affordability. In this case, Joan was looking at both condos and houses, and she found the ideal single-family house in a southwest suburb. Because she has a large dog, a Dalmatian, she had wanted to buy a house but was afraid initially that she would be limited to buying a condo due to the price. However, due to the low interest rates and the seller’s interest in coming to a deal, she was able to get a nice, two-story house near a park for what she considered a steal. So deals are out there, but sometimes you have to be patient. Joan actually had been looking for several months, and one deal actually fell through, but she took her time and did not get discouraged. All the naysayers were surprised and happy for her when she finally landed her dream house, even in this economy.
Of course, housing affordability varies between cities, so whether in Chicago or Minneapolis, or New York or Miami or L.A., a homebuyer’s story is going to be different. In Joan’s case, she bought a three-bedroom house for a little more than half of what her sister bought a one-bedroom condo for in suburban New York City a few years ago, but prices have gone down in New York too, and there are deals to be found now in every city. And they are not just on dilapidated, foreclosed properties. Joan’s house was in walk-in condition, and she couldn’t wipe the smile off her face as she turned that key in the door of her new home.
Condos in Miami
The most difficult part about shopping for condos in Miami is narrowing down the search, because the city and Miami-Dade County in general have some of the best condos in the United States, when it comes to location and amenities.
Of course, price and location are always among the most important issues to considering when shopping for a condo. But there are condos available in nearly every neighborhood and price range. In the past 20 years, the skyline of Downtown Miami has been transformed by the numerous high-rise condo towers have sprouted up, and the same has occurred in communities throughout the county. The pace of construction has slowed somewhat in recent years because of the downturn in the economy, but there are more than enough to choose from. And the upside to a bad economy for buyers is that real estate costs have come down considerably across the board.
If living amid the hustle and bustle of Downtown Miami doesn’t interest you, there are many other neighborhoods to choose from too, including Brickell and Coconut Grove, and numerous other attractive communities throughout Miami-Dade County, including Aventura, Sunny Isles Beach, Miami Beach and others.
Of course, beachfront condos are among the most sought after, and usually the most expensive, but the great thing about condos in Miami, or Miami-Dade County in general is that no matter where you live, you are never too far from the beach.
The same can be said for shopping and dining opportunities, and the vibrant nightlife and culture of the area is always within easy reach too. Some of the most upscale condos in Miami are in resort-like communities such as Miami Beach and Sunny Isles Beach, both located on barrier islands just minutes from Miami, but far enough away to feel like an escape from the city.
Sunny Isles Beach is in northeast Miami-Dade County, between Miami and Fort Lauderdale, on an island between the Intercoastal Waterway and the Atlantic Ocean. Such well known developers as Donald Trump have built fantastic high-rises along the main street of Collins Avenue, within steps of ocean beaches and sheltered marinas.
Collins Avenue also runs south through Sunny Isles to the nearby island community of Miami Beach, situated between Biscayne Bayand the Atlantic Ocean. Most of the condos there are within sight of its world-famous South Beach.
If you are not ready to buy condos in Miami just yet, either as a primary residence or as investment property, there are other options. Many condo developments, including the most upscale, have condos for rent, either on a short- or long-term basis.
There are thousands of homeowners discovering the benefits of environmentally conscious construction and Miami green condos. Building experts and local developers predict that, as the cost of energy rises, consumer demand for so-called "green buildings" will grow. Also, as new building technologies come into wider use, the overhead cost of developing green buildings will drop and become the industry standard. Because green building results in energy cost-saving, healthier surroundings and more durable construction, they're the future of condo construction. But there are two stumbling blocks. For green condos to catch on, developers have to gain experience working with the new energy-efficient, cleaner technologies to break the cost barrier. Second, realtors and developers have to educate consumers on what they are getting when they buy green.
Most consumers want what is considered today as a high-performance home. In the context of Miami green condos it means a home that is safe, healthy and durable using resources efficiently. Green condos are actually greener than the greenest single family homes. With their high residential densities, they take up less space and preserve open land. In addition, urban condos are closer to metro stations, bus stops and bike trails which discourage people from relying on cars to go everywhere. Additionally, multi-family buildings are inherently green because fewer resources per unit are used to construct and to operate.
The technology today has exploded to cover almost every aspect of construction, materials, landscaping and energy renewal. Home and condo builders today boast many green features, including healthier paint and carpeting, recycling of construction waste, lots of natural light, high efficiency appliances and systems, water conserving fixtures, use of renewable materials, minimal water use landscaping and "green roofs" that help moderate temperature while reducing and filtering water runoff. Architects, developers and builders are all looking at ways to reduce carbon emissions and waste with the long term goal of creating buildings and technologies that produce more energy than they consume. Builders are aiming to offer condo buyers green buildings in the same price range as what they would expect to pay for an old fashioned, non-green condo in the area. It is a bold step for the building trades but they are up to the task to produce a high quality product that is cost effective and the market will ultimately embrace Miami green condos
Today some buyers are questioning investing in green condos. Green condos are not only fuel-efficient and environmentally friendly but save a lot of money. Who knew that being green could be so economically rewarding? So what's the question!