Hurricane Irma battered South Florida in one of the worst hurricane seasons in recent history. With a death toll of 75 and billions of dollars in damage, what lies ahead for Miami real estate?
Industry experts believe that Miami real estate will continue to thrive in the aftermath of Irma. Its urban core and coastal neighborhoods were spared from the devastation, with the Florida Keys sustaining most of the damage.
Even though the hurricane managed to uproot trees and bring down power lines, the city’s new construction buildings withstood its force, with minimal flooding at basement level.
Single-family homes sustained minor damage, mostly to screen enclosures and landscaping.
The commercial real estate market also emerged from the hurricane largely unscathed – developers have only reported minor roof issues.
Miami real estate to stay strong
Local Realtors don’t believe that Irma’s devastation will negatively impact the real estate market. At most, there would only be some delays in closings and deliveries. Developers are mostly concerned with the post-hurricane clean-up and getting back to business.
They also believe that prospective buyers won’t be dissuaded, since anyone who knows Florida is fully aware of the risk of hurricanes.
Even waterfront properties, which are often located in evacuation zones because of their proximity to the ocean, will still be in high demand – buyers have always been willing to take calculated risks in exchange for the kind of lifestyle that a waterfront home offers.
However, Realtors expect to see an uptick in the demand for hurricane-proof features, as is often the case after a natural disaster like Irma. Features such as whole house generators and impact windows will likely be in high demand.
Moreover, industry experts see a lot of opportunities in the market in the wake of Irma, with some speculating that homeowners who have been on the fence about selling might finally make their move – and buyers would do well to take advantage of that.
More than 10 years ago, analysts expressed concern that a spate of hurricanes would cause business owners and buyers to look elsewhere for real estate. But these fears have been largely unfounded.
The threat of stronger hurricanes has done little to slow down Miami’s waterfront real estate market – a boon for the city, which requires real estate taxes to be able to fund improvements like raising streets.
A premier real estate market
In July of this year, just before the hurricane made landfall, the real estate market was doing remarkably well, with a decline in listing inventory across major segments. The median sales prices for single-family homes and condos increased, and there was a notable decline in the number of distressed sales.
While the city is known for its oceanfront mansions, there has been growing demand for the parts of town that are farther from the beach, as these areas are situated on higher ground.
Miami has always been one of the hottest housing markets in the nation. The fantastic beaches, vibrant nightlife, and diverse population continue to attract new residents and property investors alike.
For more information on Miami real estate, call Sigal Realty at 786-797-9088 or send an email to [email protected].