Ft_Lauderdale_SkylineFort Lauderdale, Florida is currently exploding with development. It’s become the city of choice for savvy investors, both commercial and residential. Florida was once primarily known for being second fiddle to Miami and for being a Spring Break paradise from the 50s to the 80s. But Fort Lauderdale is growing up, and so is its price tag.

“Historically, Fort Lauderdale had always been a secondary market to Miami. Then, when prices kept rising in Miami, developers started looking for cheaper dirt and came here. We have a relaxed coastal environment, beautiful beachfront and a strong commerce center with 7.5 million of class A office space in our downtown,” 

“We have significant luxury development both in residential and hospitality underway. The residential component has a high level of amenities, service and finishes in beautiful oceanfront locations. On the hospitality side, the Four Seasons is building a beautiful property, and there was a $150 million renovation at the W Fort Lauderdale,” notes Jenni Morejon, executive director of Fort Lauderdale Downtown Development Authority (DDA) – Forbes Magazine

The Las Olas area of Fort Lauderdale is set to bring in 1,000 new restaurant seating possibilities in the next several months. Las Olas is Fort Lauderdale’s entertainment, shopping and dining destination for residents, but it is also a haven for tourists. “Las Olas (Spanish for ‘waves’) Boulevard is the crown jewel, of the city. It connects the beach and the core of downtown.

w hotel view

Another boost that is going to help the city generate more revenue is the newly running (launched in January), privately owned Brightline train. The “green” train service with diesel-electric engines, runs between Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach. Soon enough the Brightline will extend all the way to Miami while stopping in Fort Lauderdale. This is also gonna give a boost to a boost.

One major South Florida developer, The Related Group, who have developed luxury condominiums since 1979 is betting on Fort Lauderdale’s rapidly growing luxury branded residential condominium market.

“This is a signature property, and there is nothing like it right on the ocean sitting on five contiguous acres. Our sales show demand is there for the project and product. We didn’t know what to expect and went with a smaller tower first,” explains Patrick Campbell, vice president at The Related Group. – Forbes Magazine

The oceanfront W Residences Fort Lauderdale are also selling rapidly. The 171 residences, with prices starting just under a million ($900,000s), are proving to be a hot commodity. Over 100+ units sold to date and buyers are excited. The residents at the W will have complete access to all W Fort Lauderdale hotel amenities with resident signature privileges for their added convenience. In addition, residents will receive dining, spa and even room discounts at W Fort Lauderdale. On top of all of that, owners will also have the option to place their home in the W’s rental pool. Think of it as its own in-house Airbnb.

One major difference from who is buying property in Fort Lauderdale as opposed to Miami is that about 75% of the buyers have a tie to the area versus Miami, where many buyers are really just investors or from South America.

“Fort Lauderdale has always been compared to Miami Beach, but now its value in terms of price per square foot is at an all-time high. From 1990 to 2010, the annual difference in price per square footage between these two destinations was roughly 25%. In May 2016, this difference jumped to 261% due to the slew of new inventory. This means that a buyer can get the same ocean views, amenities, finishes and services in Fort Lauderdale but at almost half the price,” said Craig Studnicky, principal of International Sales Group (ISG), has over 25 years of experience in the South Florida residential market. – Forbes Magazine

Fort Lauderdale’s retail market is thriving with an incredible 2.6 million square feet of commercial real estate completed, that was under construction or approved since 2012.

fort laud beach

One market analysis (Colliers International Fort Lauderdale Market Pulse) showed Fort Lauderdale jumped to sixth place in the “Top 10 U.S. Markets To Watch”, making it the first time Fort Lauderdale even made it into the Top 10!

With Fort Lauderale serving as a vacation destination and national cruise hub, the total amount of visitors that came through the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport rose an amazing 11.3% from 2016 to 2017, to a whopping 32.5 million. And in things get better news, Southwest, Emirates Air & JetBlue have launched new routes within the past year to and from Fort Lauderdale, greatly expanding the potential visitor market! Things aren’t just looking up for Fort Lauderdale, they are getting so high it’s gonna be hard to see!