September 21, 2023
Soaring mortgage rates hit 22-year high, potentially cooling Florida's housing market

Florida Trend Real Estate

Soaring mortgage rates hit 22-year high, potentially cooling Florida's housing market

| 8/14/2023

Soaring mortgage rates hit 22-year high, potentially cooling Florida's housing market

Buying a home is costing a lot more these days as mortgage rates have hit a 22-year high. The rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage, the most common, is now flirting with 7%, and there's talk it could rise more. This is potentially threatening to slow down Florida's housing market. "Not only does the house cost more, but the financing of the house costs more," Bankrate economist Greg McBride said. [Source: WPTV]

Florida Trend Exclusive
Real estate law: The property case

Last year in Florida, the Moises Gross law firm in Coral Gables ranked sixth among law firms in Florida filing suits against property insurance companies. It was high-volume, low-damages work — tens of thousands of dollars per claim, generally. Firm co-founder Jesus “JD” Moises says his clientele is statewide but heavy on people south of Orlando, many elderly Latinos with limited English, the majority from the lower socio-economic rungs of society. In December, the Legislature changed state property insurance law in ways that potentially ruined his firm’s business model. [Source: Florida Trend]

Feds urge judge to toss suit brought by Florida, other states to upend flood insurance overhaul

The Biden administration last week urged a federal judge to reject a challenge by Florida and other states to an overhaul of the National Flood Insurance Program that has led to higher premiums for many property owners. U.S. Department of Justice attorneys filed motions to dismiss a lawsuit challenging the overhaul and to deny a request by the states for a preliminary injunction. The motions said the changes, which became fully effective April 1 after being phased in, were designed to make the flood-insurance program “actuarially sound” and reflect the risks of each property. [Source: News Service of Florida]

Fannie, Freddie step up scrutiny for condo mortgages: Here’s what that means for buyers

More than two years after the collapse of an oceanfront condo tower near Miami, stricter condo financing guidelines continue to pose challenges for some borrowers. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac rolled out new rules cracking down on condo and co-op loans following the 2021 partial collapse of a Surfside, Florida, condo tower. Both government-sponsored enterprises ceased buying loans for condo units in projects where major repairs have been put off, or the condo association has been ordered by local authorities to resolve unsafe conditions.Fannie and Freddie recently made many of those rules permanent. [Source: Yahoo Finance]

South Florida commercial real estate sales plummeted $6B last quarter

Commercial real estate deals were down sharply in South Florida during the second quarter as high interest rates and other economic factors impacted the market, according to data from property data firm Vizzda. There were $4.03 billion in commercial real estate sales of at least $1 million in the tri-county area, plunging 60% from the same quarter a year earlier. It was even down 17% from the relatively tepid first quarter, showing that the sales volume is not picking up momentum yet. [Source: South Florida Business Journal]

$68 million
Jeff Bezos is adding a waterfront mansion in Florida to his rapidly expanding real estate empire. The Inc. founder, and the world’s third-richest person, agreed to pay $68 million for an estate in Indian Creek. [Source: Bloomberg]


› Focus expands into Florida with luxury housing project
Chicago-based real estate developer and builder Focus is expanding to the Florida real estate market with two luxury developments in the Miami area. Plans include a luxury housing development in Brickell at the site of the former Starlite Motel East. “We are thrilled to progress our plans and designs in the Southeast region of the United States,” Focus CEO and Founder Tim Anderson said.

› Meet the company behind notable apartment projects in and around downtown Jacksonville
What is the corner lot anyway? In real estate, it’s a parcel of land located at the intersection of two streets and referred to as the most desirable piece of property. In Jacksonville, it’s also the name of one of the largest independent, privately owned real estate development firms in North Florida, behind several apartment projects in the works near downtown as well as a number of commercial developments.

› Ocala is Florida's next big industrial real estate market
Tampa, Lakeland and Orlando are well-known hubs for industrial real estate in Central Florida — and a fourth market in the region is emerging as an epicenter for big warehouse deals. Ocala has been named an emerging industrial real estate market by CBRE Group Inc. Rian Smith, a CBRE senior vice president, says Ocala is comparable to where Lakeland was 10 to 12 years ago.

› St. Petersburg realty firm names top broker
Premier Sotheby's International Realty appointed Doug Swain as managing broker at its St. Petersburg office. Swain has three decades of experience in overseeing management, career development, recruiting and achieving retention for the firm, say Premier Sotheby's officials. Swain values the importance of education and relationship-building and is a certified mentor for the Brian Buffini organization and a certified Ninja Selling graduate.

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High insurance costs, mortgage rates cooling of Florida real estate market
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