December 2, 2023
How would-be homebuyers are struggling despite a lull in mortgage rates

Florida Trend Real Estate

How would-be homebuyers are struggling despite a lull in mortgage rates

| 5/15/2023

How would-be homebuyers are struggling despite a lull in mortgage rates

Even with mortgage rates hitting a small lull, buyers are still hanging back from the market as they are hit with low supply and high housing prices. Mortgage rates are around 6.48% for a 30-year fixed mortgage, a slight decrease from the 6.5% a week prior, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association index. Despite the lull in the rates and buyers having slowly grown used to them staying in the 6s, it hasn’t been enough to draw the same level of buyers back to the market as when rates were in the low 3 or 4s. [Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]

Florida law restricts foreigners’ real estate buying power. See who is most affected

A strongly criticized new Florida law restricts the real estate buying power of foreigners from seven countries, a startling move for Miami’s global property market. The legislation Gov. Ron DeSantis signed into law Monday prohibits most citizens of China, Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Russia, Syria and Venezuela from buying real estate close to a military compound or critical infrastructure, including airports, ports and wastewater treatment and electrical power plants. It makes exceptions for foreign nationals from those nations living in Florida with non-tourist visas or those who have secured asylum in the state. [Source: Miami Herald]

“A little bit more creative”: Developers seize on aging offices

Some of the tri-county region’s biggest employers are shedding some or all of their office space — much to the delight of developers that are scooping up the campuses with plans to demolish existing buildings and build in-demand asset classes such as industrial and residential. The redevelopment of office buildings presents a stark contrast to the storyline that has defined South Florida’s market over the past three years. [Source: The Real Deal]

With insurance providers dwindling, Florida homeowners are struggling to weather the availability (and affordability) storm

Attending a national insurance conference in Utah this week, Alejandro Perez Duque began realizing one common denominator during each of the discussions. "Florida is what’s on everyone’s mind," said the director of PVG Insurance Group on Key Biscayne. Fewer insurers (at least 10 declared insolvent in the past three years); higher rates (even the state’s Citizens Property Insurance is asking for a 14% rate hike); and recent legislation aimed to help the consumer (although industry lobbyists and other groups have spoken against it) are just part of Florida's property insurance landscape. [Source: Islander News]

Moving scams are rampant in Florida. Here’s how to spot them

In December, Attorney General Ashley Moody filed suit against a slew of fraudulent moving companies to try and permanently prevent them from doing business in the state. That case is ongoing. Florida has become a hotbed for these cons, with thousands of people moving here every day. [Source: Tampa Bay Times]

In the Tampa area, the median monthly mortgage is just $264 higher than the median monthly rent of $2,090. [Source: South Florida Business Journal]


› Real estate executives discuss home markets and trends during Realty Alliance Conference in Sarasota
Members of The Realty Alliance gathered, for three days, at The Ritz-Carlton Sarasota to discuss the real estate industry and how they managed to close $310 billion in real estate last year. Michael Saunders, founder and chief executive officer of Sarasota-based Michael Saunders & Company, is a member of this invitation-only network of North America’s real estate firms. Saunders hand-picked a few real estate leaders from Cincinnati, Chicago, Milwaukee, Miami and Naples, representing companies that drive business to the Sarasota/Tampa Bay area, to attend a private breakfast meeting.

› Orlando is one of 7 Florida cities that could be headed for a housing crisis
Florida is a U.S. destination many people flock to for its sunny weather, sandy beaches and attractions. With increasing mortgage rates driving up home prices, however, some residents may consider living elsewhere. GOBankingRates released its study regarding the state's housing market. Based on their research, they believe seven Florida cities are showing signs that could point to a housing crisis.

› Flood insurance will double in Hillsborough, Pinellas
In a state already being crushed by high insurance premiums, here’s more bad news: Floridians are going to be paying a lot more for flood insurance. Under new federal estimates released this week, Floridians will see their federal flood insurance premiums double, on average, in the coming years. For Pinellas County homeowners, National Flood Insurance Program premiums are expected to rise 112%, from $1,537 to $3,257. Hillsborough County homeowners should brace for 125% increases, from $1,132 to $2,549.

› Where did South Florida apartment rents rise most? We’ve got results of new survey
South Florida’s home renters faced double-digit annual increases in 11 of the largest cities, some once known for cheap apartments. The rent increases ranged from less than 1% to nearly 30% among the 28 largest cities in Miami, Broward and Palm Beach counties in April compared to a year ago, according to a fresh residential rental report by Zumper, a national apartment listing company.

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