What makes Miami a global ‘power market’ for luxury real estate

by Meg White

It’s not easy to stay up-to-date on the latest in luxury real estate. The true trajectory and intensity of trends in this specialized market can be obscured by noise in the data when sample sizes or time frames are too small. That’s according to the annual report put out by Coldwell Banker’s Global Luxury program, titled “The Report: State of Luxury 2019.” The authors of the report caution agents to avoid month-to-month comparisons and keep a long-term perspective.

Miami is one of the many cities identified as a “power market” in the report this year, a distinction that didn’t surprise Nathan Zeder. “Miami is a worldwide destination that is not only known for 365 days of sunshine, beaches, watersports and destination shopping, it is also considered one of the best values in the world in terms of what you get for your dollars for both properties and lifestyle,” said Zeder, an agent with The Jills Zeder Group at Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate. “We have access to multiple international airports, with Miami International Airport being located in the middle of the city, something that is rarely seen for such a global city. Also Miami is a hub for almost all things South and Central American, which allows us to facilitate transactions for people from those regions with brands and businesses they recognize in their home countries.”

While the report singles out a number of trends driving the luxury market internationally, from urban migration to wellness to technology, Zeder identified multigenerational living and walkability as two of the most important factors that help the city stand out. “Miami is a natural place for multigenerational families, as our housing is well-suited for an aging population as well as newly formed families,” he said. “Our walkable communities as well as our seasonal ability to walk 365 days a year pretty much accommodates all demographics and lifestyles… As Miami has grown, our urban centers have grown with it. Brickell, Coconut Grove, Coral Gables all have wonderful walkable central business districts that have incredible access to shops, restaurants, and workplaces.”

Coldwell Banker’s report is relatively optimistic about the relationship between the U.S. and Mexico, and that’s reflective of what Zeder sees in his own neighborhood. “Having lived here my whole life, this is a city that embraces people from all over the world and makes them feel at home no matter where they are from,” he said, noting that the infrastructure of the city is supportive of a truly multicultural population. “Our schools are equipped to handle bilingual families and children. We are an extremely accepting and welcoming community made up with people from all parts of the world.”

The report also tackles the question of how well luxury markets rebound from disaster. Zeder said Hurricane Andrew was a wake-up call for the city, and he’s proud of the response he’s seen. “Miami has been the leading area in the country in fortifying our homes and communities against hurricanes,” he said. “Residents are accustomed to storm activity. They know what is needed to prepare for a storm and take the appropriate steps. Additionally, we have weeks to get ready for a storm, unlike other areas that have them pop up on the grid with no warning.”

Of course, amenities are an important consideration for luxury buyers as well. But Zeder cautioned his fellow real estate professionals from lumping all buyers into one category when it comes to this important consideration. “Miami is somewhat unique in this sense because we have two types of luxury buyers: the home buyer and the condo buyer,” he said. “The homes will tend to have gyms, wine rooms, theatres, and master bedrooms with his and her baths. The luxury condo buildings have concierge services that allow them to handle almost all of their residences needs, on top of game rooms, theatres, gyms, pet spas, you name it.”

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