#1 Tourism growth: Florida continues to deliver strong tourism numbers, from the Disney theme parks in Orlando to the beaches of Miami Beach, driving strong activity for the hospitality and retail sectors. This translates to demand from hotel and retail property owners seeking to acquire existing assets and develop new projects to cater to the soaring demand from leisure and business travelers visiting the Sunshine State.
#2 Industrial demand: More than 2 million square feet of new industrial space has been delivered in South Florida over the past two years alone and tenants have absorbed nearly all of that space. With significant domestic and international investment across the state’s main industrial markets, demand for warehousing space should remain strong thanks to growth in trade and tourism in particular.
#3 More mixed-use: From the billion dollar project announced in the urban center of Tampa to the $2 billion development Miami World Center set to rise in Downtown Miami, the state will continue to see investment in large-scale mixed use projects as urban communities gain more appeal. The success that live-work-and-play communities are experiencing throughout Florida will drive investment in projects that can add a mix of needed uses such as retail, residential and office.
#4 Trading hands: Last year, key office markets such as Fort Lauderdale in Broward County and Downtown Tampa in the Tampa Bay area saw more office sales. In Downtown Tampa alone, four office buildings sold during the second half of last year. The lack of new office product under development and rising rental rates in tier-one markets is driving interest from investors that is expected to continue throughout 2015.
#5 Currency shift: With the weakening of several foreign currencies and the dollar continuing to strengthen, this will surely have an impact on Florida’s real estate market over the course of this year. Expect to see a potential increase in investment from domestic investors and in markets highly attractive to international investment, such as Miami, a shift from overwhelmingly Latin American-led capital to more European and even Asian bound investment.