Agent

Guide to working with foreign homebuyers in Miami

Miami is a renowned destination for foreign buyers looking for a home in the sun
  • Median prices in South Florida vary greatly and cater to all budgets
  • Young homebuyers in Miami seek out more active neighborhoods that tend to be more expensive
  • Miami-Dade itself tends to attract more affluent homebuyers

Miami is a renowned destination for residential property thanks to its attractive lifestyle. Excluding the palm trees and endless beaches, it is home to an affluent and educated multicultural population that all mingle within this world-famous cultural melting pot.

There are many different property options for all buyers, and local agents should have a clear understanding of how to work with these individuals.

Breaking down the Miami real estate market

Median prices are very different from one county to the next. Miami-Dade is mostly a big budget and trendy destination while Broward County caters to all budgets.

The median sale price in Miami-Dade County is about $250,000, which is $100,000 more than what homes cost in 2010 according to Trulia, a major U.S. property portal. This county is home to some of the priciest areas in the country outside of New York and California.

According to the 100 most expensive ZIP codes 2015 by Forbes, Miami Beach and Coral Gables some of the ritziest areas in America.

Most expensive ZIP codes in Miami 2015
Forbes ranking Area ZIP Code Median price,

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USD millions

6 Miami Beach 33109 5.56
28 Coral Gables 33156 3.86
35 Coral Gables 33143 3.48
Source: Forbes

The median sale price in Broward County is $204,000, with home values ranging from $35,000 to $563,000 according to Trulia. The most popular ZIP code is Fort Lauderdale’s 33308 where the median sale price is $316,000.

Approximately 2.8 percent of residential property in Miami is vacant at the moment according to RealtyTrac, but after a recent spurt, price growth is slowing. 

“Our foreign clients can be divided into two types: families and then a younger, more affluent, often unattached, generation. Families prefer places like Boca Raton, Palm Beach, West Palm Beach and Boynton Beach,” says  Mikhail Podkopaev, general manager at Vera Realty.

“Homes for sale there are spacious and buyers have more choice when it comes to the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, for example. Also, the surroundings are very peaceful.”

Broward County has a greater spread of prices, ranging from affordable to expensive (i.e., $188,000–893,000). To the North, buyers can also check out property in Palm Beach County where the median sale price is $228,800, but can reach $894,000 for a home on the shore.

Ultimately, the cost depends on both quality of construction and proximity to amenities, but also distance to the shoreline.

“Younger and more affluent buyers tend to choose expensive real estate in more active neighborhoods. For instance, apartments in Sunny Isles Beach, which are quite pricey, are popular – especially with South American buyers,” Podkopaev says.

House prices and rental rates in Miami–Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties

USD (Feb 2016)

Median home value Median price per sq ft Median rent per month
West Palm Beach 189,300 136 1,561
Miami 290,800 311 2,109
Boca Raton 297,500 162 2,228
Sunny Isles Beach 405,300 281 2,461
Palm Beach 894,000 364 1,808
Source: Zillow
Leigh Stewart is the international real estate editor and expert contributor for Tranio, an online overseas property broker. She has spent most of her career working with start-ups on emerging markets as a trilingual media consultant and journalist.