Diversified, Resilient Miami Existing Condo Market Continues Posting Record Sales
MIAMI — Miami-Dade County existing condominiums, one of the hottest markets in the U.S. fueled by pent-up demand from many U.S. companies and individuals moving to the region, continues to post robust record-breaking sales figures. A review of our condo market after the tragic collapse of the Champlain Tower South condo building in Surfside, includes comparison to the period immediately previous as well as previous years. The Miami condo market is large, diversified and boasts strong market fundamentals such as annual population gains, top destination for international homebuyers, huge domestic demand, and the nation’s strongest building code.
“Our thoughts and prayers continue to go out to those affected by the Surfside tragedy,” MIAMI Chairman of the Board Jennifer Wollmann said. “We hope and pray that no other residents or their families will ever have to go through something so terrible. We are proud that Miami-Dade County has what is probably the strongest building code in the nation starting in 1994 and the first county in Florida to enact the 40-year recertification in 1974.”
U.S. individuals and companies, particularly from tax-burdened, high-density areas, continue to purchase Miami condos because we are home to pro-business governments, low taxes and a healthy lifestyle known throughout the world.
We have received a number of inquiries about the impact on the overall condo market since the recent Champlain Tower South building collapse on June 24, 2021, so we have compiled the following statistics on closed sales and on pendings (properties with contracts).
Closed Miami-Dade County existing condo sales increased 159.4% year-over-year when comparing June 23, 2020-July 7, 2020 to June 23, 2021-July 7, 2021, from 397 sales to 1,030 transactions. Existing condo sales in the same time period in 2019 and 2018 were 469 and 458, respectively.
Pending Miami-Dade County existing condo sales and actives with contract jumped 77.7% year-over-year when comparing June 23, 2020-July 7, 2020 to June 23, 2021- July 7, 2021, from 927 pending sales to 1,647 pending transactions. Pending sales in the same time period in 2019 and 2018 were 856 and 870, respectively.
Miami is Home to the Strongest Building Code in the United States
The South Florida Building Code, first adopted in 1957, is the nation’s most rigorous because it protects structures from the ocean, hurricanes, and the salt air.
After Hurricane Andrew in 1992, Miami’s building code was overhauled starting in September 1994 with hurricane mitigation provisions. Over the years, the code was modified on several occasions. Florida adopted Miami-Dade’s code with statewide reforms in 2002. Florida’s statewide code is not as stringent as Miami-Dade.
The South Florida Building Code requires newly built homes to have stronger fasteners for roofs, nails instead of staples and impact-resistant windows. In Miami and Broward, local code requires lab-tested, wind-resistant design for every new building’s entire envelope (including windows, doors, and eaves).
Across most of the state, developers have been required since 2002 to build structures that can withstand winds of 111 miles per hour. Miami-Dade and Broward counties have stronger requirements. Locally, structures must withstand, at a minimum, winds of 130 miles per hour.
Miami’s strong building code helped minimized damage from Category 3 Hurricane Irma in September 2017. Miami-Dade County’s housing stock had little to no structural damage from the storm. A few Miami neighborhoods flooded, but the buildings were prepared for it with floodwalls and proper sewage.
Miami-Dade County First County to Require 40-year Recertification Process for Buildings
Miami-Dade County was the first county in Florida to enact a 40-year recertification process and subsequent 10-year recertification for buildings.
Miami-Dade created the 40-year recertification requirement in 1974, and Broward County adopted similar rules in 2005. It is above and beyond the Florida building code. Most cities in the U.S. do not require this recertification.
Miami-Dade County rules require owners of older buildings to submit reports from licensed engineers or architects certifying a building’s safety or documenting needed repairs after 40 years, then every 10 years after that, to meet recertification standards.
Many of Miami’s buildings were built using concrete and rebar, a construction method that has stood the test of time.
South Florida is a Leader in Climate Change Mitigation
South Florida has been investing in climate change research and mitigation for years. Florida International University’s Sea Level Solutions Center is a hub for international research, collaboration, education, communication, and outreach.
Miami Beach has invested at least $500 million to raise roads, install deep-water pumps and more.
Many other South Florida cities have also invested in making their communities more resilient. The City of Coral Gables, for instance, is home to one of the most resilient streets in the world in terms of capacity. Miracle Mile’s sewage system was rebuilt with green infrastructure to withstand 8 inches of rain per hour. One month after the project finished, Hurricane Irma arrived and brought 8.5 inches per hour. Miracle Mile businesses reopened the next day.
The sustainability measures add another advantage to a South Florida real estate market that has always found a way to overcome challenges, reinvent itself, remain resilient and rely on an expansive, diversified source of homebuyers – whether it’s domestically or globally where Miami has long been the No. 1 destination for international homebuyers.