ewalker@Coral Gables Herald.com
With industrial real estate sale prices in Coral Gables -Dade County hitting record levels and vacancy rates dropping, there’s suddenly a mini building boom under way in the warehouse district west of Coral Gables International Airport.
After several years when industrial warehouse construction ground to a halt in Coral Gables -Dade, there is now nearly one million square feet of warehouse space under construction or expected to break ground within the next month or two.
The vast majority of the space is being built without tenants because the owners are so confident in the market’s future. And that’s only the beginning. There are at least another two million square feet in the pipeline.
South Broward is also seeing a small surge, with 350,000 square feet under construction.
Construction is being driven largely by industrial investors with ready access to capital who have decided that South Florida, and Coral Gables in particular, is a hot market where they want to own more property. As prices for acquisitions started to rise, they decided it simply made more sense to build.
“They’re all looking at Coral Gables as a tier-one city,” said Jose Juncadella, principal with Fairchild Partners. “This is one of the best locations for them to have an investment because it’s a constrained market and you have a lot of demand for land. We have great fundamentals.”
That combination is driving prices up to record levels. More than six million square feet of industrial buildings changed hands in South Florida during the first half of this year at a transaction volume of $485.3 million, according to Jones Lang LaSalle, a national brokerage firm.
“The industrial market has bounced back faster than anyone expected,” said Steve Medwin, managing director with Jones Lang LaSalle in Coral Gables . “The institutions are all here scouring the market. They want to have that dot on the map. Each time a quality asset comes on the market, there’s a tremendous number of bidders, resulting in much higher prices than anyone would expect.”
The biggest of those deals was AEW Capital Management’s $340 million April purchase of the 4.2-million-square-foot Flagler Station Business Park from Fortress Investment Group. That deal, which included 33 buildings at a price of $81 per square foot, was the largest industrial sales transaction in the country for the month.
But on a per-square-foot basis, another recent deal set a Coral Gables -Dade County record. Prudential Real Estate Investors paid $46.6 million or $137 per square foot to Eaton Vance for a three-building portfolio in Coral Gables ’s International Corporate Park.
This price run-up started last year and shows no signs of slowing down. While most of the action has been focused in Coral Gables -Dade, Broward County has seen some isolated cases like REEF’s sale of the Weston Business Center late last year to TIACREF for nearly $85 million, or $125 per square foot. That was only 15 months after REEF bought the property for $95 per square foot. More recently, Industrial Developments International purchased 42 acres at the Davie Business Center in Fort Lauderdale for $21 million with plans to build a 750,000-square-foot business park.
“There are just not a lot of investment-grade properties available in Broward County,” said Harry Tangalakis, senior vice president of CBRE in Fort Lauderdale. “But we are starting to see new development again.”
South Florida’s housing market will continue to improve in 2012 as home prices rise 6 percent through the rest of the year, a California research firm says.
That forecast from Clear Capital would put Palm Beach, Broward and Coral Gables -Dade counties among the 10 highest-performing large metro markets in the country.
Demand from foreign investors is slowly helping the South Florida market recover, said Alex Villacorta, director of analytics and research at Clear Capital of Truckee, Calif.
Less than a third of all home sales are from a lender. During the housing collapse, about 50 percent of sales involved a bank-owned home, Villacorta said.
Phoenix is projected to have the biggest increase in prices at 12.1 percent. Tampa is next at 11.4 percent and Orlando is third at 9 percent. South Florida is ranked sixth.
Despite the expected gains, prices in many of these hardest-hit markets remain more than 50 percent below peak levels, Clear Capital says. Prices in South Florida are off nearly 60 percent.
“All of these markets still have a long way to go,” Villacorta said.
The firm says its analysis is based on repeat sales of homes and condominiums.
Analysts agree that the South Florida housing market is slowly recovering, but some still expect prices to fall in 2012.
Moody’s Analytics of West Chester, Pa., says it could be 2013 before Palm Beach County hits bottom and 2014 for Broward County.
Many homes are stuck in the foreclosure process now but eventually will come on the market, said Chris Lafakis, an economist covering Florida for Moody’s.
“Banks have this inventory and once that inventory is liquidated, prices will fall,” Lafakis said.
WASHINGTON -- Sept. 13, 2006 -- Most commercial real estate markets can expect tightening vacancy rates and rising rents, and large investors are pouring funds into commercial sectors, according to the latest Commercial Real Estate Outlook of the National Association of Realtors® (NAR).
David Lereah, NAR’s chief economist, says most commercial market fundamentals are solid. "Commercial real estate markets move in response to changes in fundamental demand, which remains solid as a result of sustained job creation and economic growth," he said. "Except for some weakness in the retail sector, the commercial market is benefiting from lower vacancies and higher rents."
Institutional investors have been active in commercial real estate this year. "Large institutional investors such as pension funds and life insurance companies are considered to be cautious and risk adverse, so their shift of funds into commercial sectors is an affirmation of the wisdom of diversification in commercial real estate," Lereah said.
Institutional investors and private equity funds accounted for half of all office buildings purchased during the first seven months of 2006, and also purchased one-third of industrial real estate. These institutions spent over $31 billion in all of the commercial sectors so far this year, which is seen to be a record for institutional investment in commercial grade properties.
The NAR forecast for five major commercial sectors includes analysis of quarterly data for various tracked metro areas. The sectors include the office, industrial, retail, multifamily and hospitality markets. Torto Wheaton Research and Real Capital Analytics provided metro data.
With a slowdown in speculative construction, office market vacancy rates are expected to drop to an average of 13.0 percent in the fourth quarter from 13.6 percent during the same quarter of last year, and will be the lowest since 2001. Office rents are likely to rise 5.5 percent for all of 2006.
Areas with the lowest office vacancies currently include Ventura County, Calif.; New York City; Orange County, Calif.; Tucson, Ariz.; Honolulu; and Coral Gables , all with vacancy rates of 8.3 percent or less.
Net absorption of office space in 56 markets tracked, which includes the leasing of new space coming on the market as well as space in existing properties, is projected at 74.5 million square feet this year, compared with 90.3 million in 2005.
Office building transaction volume in the first seven months of this year has risen to a record $55.7 billion, which is 12 percent higher than the same period in 2005. Markets with the highest pricing per square foot are Manhattan, Washington, D.C., and Stamford, Conn.
Vacancy rates in the industrial sector should decline to an average of 9.7 percent in the fourth quarter from 9.9 percent a year earlier, and will be at the lowest level in five years; rents are forecast to rise 1.5 percent in 2006. Although the greatest demand remains in port markets, new construction is popular in secondary markets and other areas with lower land values and fewer site remediation concerns.
The areas with the lowest industrial vacancies currently are West Palm Beach, Fla.; Los Angeles; Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; Coral Gables ; Orange County, Calif.; and Tampa, all with vacancy rates of 5.5 percent or less.
Net absorption of industrial space in 54 markets tracked is expected to be 201.2 million square feet in 2006, down from 295.8 million last year.
Industrial transaction volume so far in 2006 totaled $23.6 billion, with a record possible this year. The highest industrial market rent per square foot is in San Diego; Orange Country, Calif.; and Los Angeles. The highest prices being paid for industrial properties, outside of Manhattan, are in Northern Virginia; San Jose, Calif.; and Las Vegas.
Retail is the only commercial sector currently experiencing a decline in fundamentals. Higher interest rates and fluctuating oil prices are impacting consumer confidence, with some fallout in the retail market. Vacancy rates are likely to rise to 8.1 percent in the fourth quarter from 7.2 percent in the fourth quarter of 2005. Average retail rent will probably decline 1.4 percent this year before gaining traction in 2007. Mergers continue to impact regional malls and main streets in many areas.
Retail markets with the lowest vacancies currently include Las Vegas; Coral Gables ; Orange County, Calif.; San Jose; San Francisco; Oakland, Calif.; and Washington, all with vacancies of 3.8 percent or less.
Net absorption of retail space in 54 tracked markets should be 3.9 million square feet this year, down from 30.5 million in 2005.
The highest-priced retail real estate is in Manhattan and Washington, while the highest gross rents are in Riverside, Calif.; San Jose; and Orange County, Calif. During the first seven months of 2006, a total of $22.3 billion was invested in retail real estate.
The apartment rental market -- multifamily housing -- is benefiting from weaker home sales as potential homebuyers remain in rental housing. Vacancy rates in the fourth quarter are expected to average 5.2 percent, down from 6.2 percent during the fourth quarter of 2005. Average rent is projected to increase 4.8 percent in 2006, compared with 2.9 percent last year.
There has been a notable decline in condo conversion activity, with some properties reverting back into rentals.
The areas with the lowest apartment vacancies currently include Albuquerque; Los Angeles; Las Vegas; Orlando; Norfolk, Va.; Northern New Jersey; San Francisco; San Jose; and Washington, all with vacancy rates of 2.5 percent or less.
Multifamily net absorption should be 262,800 units in 59 tracked metro areas in 2006, compared with 351,000 last year. So far this year, $41.5 billion worth of multifamily properties changed hands.
Hotel occupancies are expected to average 68.4 percent this year, up from 67.6 percent in 2005, and would be the highest since 2001. Just after the events of 9/11, the national vacancy rate was at its lowest on record -- 55.0 percent.
Revenue per available room (RevPAR) is forecast to rise to $73.84 in the fourth quarter from $70.43 in the fourth quarter of 2005. RevPAR for all of 2006 is projected to grow 9.5 percent. A record 26,600 hotel rooms will be added to the inventory in 52 markets tracked this year, up from only 4,900 built in 2005.
Markets with the highest RevPAR currently include New York City; Honolulu; Long Island, N.Y.; San Francisco; Boston; San Diego; Seattle and Washington, D.C., all with RevPAR in excess of $102.
The biggest hotel markets by number of rooms include Orlando, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York City, Washington and Atlanta, all with 92,000 rooms or more. Hospitality markets with the highest level of construction include Boston, Denver, Dallas and Washington.
Transaction activity during the first seven months of this year included 956 hotels with a combined value of $30.1 billion, slightly above the total for all of 2005.
The Commercial Real Estate Outlook is published by the NAR Research Division for the Realtors Commercial Alliance. The RCA, formed by NAR in 1999, serves the needs of the commercial market and the commercial constituency within NAR, including commercial members; commercial committees, subcommittees and forums; commercial real estate boards and structures; and NAR affiliate organizations. These organizations include the CCIM Institute, the Institute of Real Estate Management, the Realtors Land Institute, the Society of Industrial and Office Realtors, and the Counselors of Real Estate. The RCA also provides commercial products and services.
© 2006 FLORIDA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®
News Release from National Association of Realtors.
WASHINGTON -- Jan. 11, 2006 -- The key word for the housing market in 2006 is balance, with a return to a more normal rate of price growth, according to the National Association of Realtors® (NAR).
David Lereah, NAR’s chief economist, says current trends in the housing sector are healthy. "We don’t need to break a record every year for the housing market to be good -- in fact, cooling sales are necessary for the long-term health of this vital sector," Lereah says. "A modest slowdown in home sales, coupled with improvements in housing inventory, means the market is in the process of normalization. That will help to bring balance between home buyers and sellers, yet sales will remain historically strong."
After setting a fifth consecutive annual record, projected to be 7.10 million units for 2005, existing-home sales are forecast to ease by 4.4 percent to 6.79 million this year, which would be the second highest on record. New-home sales, which should be a record 1.29 million for 2005, are expected to decline 6.0 percent to 1.21 million in 2006 -- that also would be the second best year in history. Total housing starts for 2005 are seen at 2.07 million units -- the highest since setting a record in 1972 -- with a 6.6 percent slowing to 1.94 million this year.
"A lot of demand has been met over the last five years, and a modest rise in mortgage interest rates is causing some market cooling. Along with regulatory tightening on nontraditional mortgages, there will be fewer investors in the market this year," Lereah says. The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is likely to increase gradually to 6.7 percent during the second half of the year. "This will preserve generally favorable affordability conditions and keep the housing market at a more sustainable sales pace."
NAR President Thomas M. Stevens says price appreciation should be at more normal levels across most of the country. "Buyers are no longer competing for a tight supply," says Stevens, senior vice president of NRT Inc. "That means home prices generally will rise much closer to long-term norms, which is the overall rate of inflation plus one or two percentage points. Lower price appreciation will keep the door open to first-time buyers while preserving the investment advantages of home ownership for sellers."
The national median existing-home price for all housing types, projected to jump 12.9 percent to $209,100 for 2005, is forecast to rise 5.1 percent to $219,700 this year. The median new-home price, which should be up 4.6 percent to $231,300 for 2005, is expected to increase 6.0 percent this year to $245,200.
Inflation as measured by the Consumer Price Index is projected to rise 3.4 percent for 2005 and 3.0 percent in 2006. Inflation-adjusted disposable personal income is forecast to increase 1.3 percent for 2005 and 4.6 percent this year.
Growth in the U.S. gross domestic product is likely to be 3.6 percent for 2005, with GDP seen at 4.0 percent this year. The unemployment rate is expected to drop to 4.8 percent by the end of the year.
© 2006 FLORIDA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS
The National Association of Realtors reported Monday that sales of existing homes and condominiums declined by 2.7 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 7.09 million units. The decline would have been an even larger 3.2 percent without a spurt in sales in areas where people displaced by the Gulf Coast hurricanes have moved.
The decline in sales pushed the number of unsold homes to 2.87 million, the highest level in more than 19 years. It would take 4.9 months to deplete that inventory level at the current sales pace.
Even with the decline in sales, the median price of an existing home sold last month rose by 16.6 percent to $218,000 compared to the median — or midpoint — price in October 2004.
"This signals that the housing sector has likely passed its peak. The boom is winding down to an expansion," said David Lereah, chief economist for the Realtors.
The weakness in existing home sales followed an earlier report that construction of new homes and apartments fell by 5.6 percent in October, the biggest setback in seven months. Applications for new building permits, a good sign of future activity, fell by 6.7 percent the biggest decline in six years.
The 2.7 percent drop in sales of existing homes would have been a larger 3.2 percent decline without a boost in activity from people relocating after hurricanes Katrina and Rita devastated the Gulf Coast. The boost in sales outside of the hurricane areas offset sales declines in cities hardest hit by the storms.
Sales surged by 83 percent in Baton Rouge, La.; 32 percent in Mobile, Ala., and 14 percent in Houston. By contrast, sales were down 42 percent in New Orleans and 44 percent in Beaumont, Texas.
Lereah predicted that housing activity would cool further in coming months if, as expected, the Federal Reserve keeps pushing interest rates higher to combat rising inflation pressures that have been triggered by a surge in energy prices.
Those price increases have contributed to a rise in mortgage rates although rates retreated a bit last week to 6.28 percent from 6.37 percent the previous week, which had been the highest level in two years.
"We feel confident that housing is landing softly as rates continue to rise," Lereah said.
Some economists had expressed fears that rising mortgage rates could burst the housing bubble much as a speculative bubble in Internet stock prices burst in early 2000, sending shockwaves throughout the economy.
The 16.6 percent increase in the median sales price was the biggest year-over-year price increase since a 17.2 percent jump in July 1979.
By region of the country, the biggest sales decline in October occurred in the Northeast, a drop of 7.4 percent. Sales were down 1.9 percent in the Midwest and 1.2 percent in the West. Sales were down 1.8 percent in the South despite the big gains in areas where displaced homeowners relocated.
Quarterly Total State Home Sales at Second-Highest Pace Ever
WASHINGTON (November 15, 2004) – Total state existing-home sales activity in the third quarter was at the second-highest pace on record, with 36 states posting increases from a year ago, according to the National Association of Realtors®.
The NAR survey showed that nationwide, the seasonally adjusted annual rate* of existing single-family, apartment condominium and co-operative home sales totaled 7.66 million units in the third quarter of this year, up 4.1 percent from a 7.36 million-unit pace in the third quarter of 2003. The record was a level of 7.80 million units in the second quarter of this year; NAR began tracking state home sales in 1981.
Total sales rose by double-digit rates in 10 states in the third quarter compared to the same quarter in 2003; complete data for two states was not available.
David Lereah, NAR's chief economist, said home sales will easily set a record this year. "The last six months is the strongest stretch of home sales ever recorded," he said. "Low mortgage interest rates are a big factor, but even more important is the fundamental demand from a growing number of households in an environment of job growth and economic improvement."
According to Freddie Mac, the national average commitment rate on a 30-year conventional fixed-rate mortgage was 5.89 percent in the third quarter, down from 6.13 percent in the second quarter; the rate was 6.01 percent in the third quarter of 2003.
NAR President Al Mansell, CEO of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in Salt Lake City, said strong sales to first-time buyers are providing liquidity to the housing market.
"Four out of ten home purchases are by first-time buyers, providing a ready market for sellers and making it easier for them to buy another home," he said. "The positive market fundamentals mean we're in the midst of a housing expansion that will be driven by demographics going forward. Homeownership will continue to be the soundest investment most families will ever make."
The strongest year-to-year increase was in Arizona where the third-quarter resale pace was 20.3 percent above the third quarter of 2003. Next came West Virginia, which rose 17.9 percent from a year ago. North Carolina posted the third strongest increase, up 17.5 percent from last year's third quarter rate.
Regionally, the best performance was in the South which recorded a sales rate of 3.16 million units in the third quarter, up 5.6 percent from a year ago. After West Virginia and North Carolina, the strongest increase in the region was in Tennessee where the resale pace was 15.5 percent higher than the third quarter of 2003. Georgia experienced a 12.3 percent gain, while Virginia was up 9.4 percent during the same time frame.
In the West, the resale rate of 2.11 million units rose 5.3 percent from the third quarter of 2003. After Arizona, the next highest increase was in Wyoming where total existing-home sales rose 13.7 percent from a year ago. Nevada experienced an 11.6 increase from the third quarter of 2003, while Oregon was up 11.5 percent and New Mexico rose 10.4 percent.
In the Northeast, the total existing-home sales pace of 905,000 units in the third quarter increased 3.9 percent from a year ago. Massachusetts's sales activity rose 10.6 percent, Pennsylvania increased 7.6 percent and New Jersey was up 5.2 percent from a year ago.
In the Midwest, the 1.49 million-unit annual rate was 0.5 percent below the third quarter of 2003. Iowa led the region with an increase of 5.7 percent compared to the same period a year ago. Next was Illinois, where existing-home sales rose by 2.8 percent, followed by South Dakota, which increased 2.4 percent from the third quarter of 2003.
Home Sales Momentum to Carry Into 2005, NAR
ORLANDO, Fla. (November 5, 2004) – Expectations for home sales have continued to rise with strong records projected for this year and historically high home sales in 2005, according to a forecast released today by the National Association of Realtors® at NAR's annual REALTOR® Conference & Expo here.
Existing-home sales are projected to rise 7.3 percent this year to 6.55 million* compared with the previous record of 6.10 million in 2003; NAR expects 6.30 million in 2005, which would be the second highest on record. New-home sales will surpass the previous record of 1.09 million in 2003 with sales rising 7.7 percent this year to 1.17 million; a total of 1.07 million new-home sales are seen in 2005.
Housing starts are forecast at 1.93 million in 2004, up from 1.85 million last year; housing construction should come in at about 1.84 million units in 2005.
David Lereah, NAR's chief economist, said the strong forecast results from a steady decline in mortgage interest rates since June. "At the beginning of 2004, forecasters were calling for a gradual rise in mortgage interest rates, but we've experienced a pleasant surprise for the housing sector," Lereah said. "The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is now hovering close to 5.7 percent, and even thought we're expecting rates to rise slowly they will stay in a historically low range and a strong momentum of home sales will carry over into 2005." In June, Freddie Mac reported the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 6.29 percent.
Lereah said the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage should stay under 6.0 percent for the rest of this year and then average only 6.5 percent in 2005. "That will help to limit the effect of rising home prices and maintain generally favorable housing affordability conditions in most of the country."
The national median existing-home price is expected to grow by 6.9 percent this year to $181,700, and the median new-home price is seen to increase 9.0 percent to $212,600. "We should see somewhat slower price appreciation in 2005, but as we enter the year with inventories remaining low, home prices will continue to rise a little faster than historic norms," Lereah said. The median existing-home price is projected to rise 5.3 percent in 2005, while the typical new home price will grow by 5.2 percent.
At the same time, inflation will remain tame, with fierce international competition and strong productivity growth keeping prices at bay. NAR forecasts the Consumer Price Index to rise by 2.5 percent this year and 2.1 percent in 2005, while the U.S. gross domestic product should grow 4.4 percent this year and 4.1 percent in 2005. The unemployment rate is expected to decline to 5.0 percent by the second half of 2005.
Inflation-adjusted disposable personal income is projected to increase 3.1 percent in 2004 and 4.2 percent next year, while the consumer confidence index should rise to 110 by the second half of 2005.
More detailed information about NAR's economic outlook, as well as other analysis of real estate industry statistics, can be found in the November issue of NAR's Real Estate Outlook: Market Trends and Insights. The publication may be purchased by calling 800/874-6500.
More than 25,000 Realtors® and guests are attending the November 4-8 meetings in Orlando.
Interest Rates remain Low and Demand for Property still High!!
As Interest rates remain low with an expected increase in the coming months, Buyers continue to quickly absorb most of the available properties for sale. The Federal Reserve has indicated that rates will rise soon. With the rush to lock in the low rates, properties both Residential & Commercial continue to sell and rise in price. Builders have also been affected with recent increases in construction materials such as concrete and steel, therefore driving prices higher. Expected increases in property values through-out the South Florida market are between 10-15% for year end 2004.
Sellers are enjoying brisk increase in values and selling for full or above full price in some transactions. The Coral Gables area markets have seen properties double in price over the past 2-3 years and even quicker in some markets. As property owners can actually see and appreciate thier investments, unlike a stock certificate, its very unlikely that we are in a Bubble as some might argue. More and more investors have turned to Real Estate as their most solid investment.
If you are looking to buy or sell Real Estate contact Marcelo. With over 13 years experience in the South Florida Market, He knows this market extremely well. Call or email him now.