The Real Deal Miami

The Real Deal launches new Friday column from Peter Zalewski

Weekly piece with reader questions on condo market to debut on June 13

May 19, 2014 01:30PM
By Peter Zalewski

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Peter Zalewski

Peter Zalewski

Anyone who has ever listened to me speak at an event or on a bus tour has inevitably heard my comparison of the expertise in which Miamians trade condos with the enthusiasm for stock trading in New York and commodity trading in Chicago.

My outlook on the Miami condo market, which some say it is a bit too cynical for their tastes, was influenced from years of writing for various publications – including The Real Deal – about the booms and busts in South Florida’s real estate and banking industries since 1993.

Contributing to my overall perspective of the South Florida condo market is the fact that I am a nonpracticing real estate broker who has been licensed since 1995.

That combination of skills and experience recently prompted the Miami Herald to dub me the “condo cognoscenti,” based on my firm’s ability to collect, analyze and interpret actionable information on the South Florida condo market ahead of the curve. Originally, we monitored the region’s condo market under the CondoVultures.com flag with a focus on distressed properties and more recently under the banner of CraneSpotters.com, with a focus on preconstruction condo projects east of I-95 in Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties.

Our research shows that South Florida is in the midst of another condo construction boom, with more than 225 towers totaling nearly 31,000 units proposed, planned, under construction or recently completed as of May 15.

For comparison purposes, developers created more than 240 towers with nearly 49,000 units east of I-95 in South Florida during the last boom-and-bust cycle.

Given the strong interest in today’s rapidly changing and sometime volatile South Florida condo market, TRD asked me to begin writing a second weekly column each Friday to address some of the most pertinent reader questions of our time.The new Friday column is scheduled to debut on June 13.

The focus of the Friday column will be dictated by you, the readers, based on your questions and comments submitted to southfloridanews@therealdeal.com about the South Florida real estate market. The TRD editors will choose the questions for me to address.

If you are a reader of my current weekly Tuesday column, please note that I will continue to use that space to focus on South Florida’s preconstruction condo market.

I have learned over the years that every transaction story has three sides – the buyer, the seller and me – so you will inevitably disagree with many of my assumptions and conclusions. I know this because readers have actively posted comments about my various Tuesday columns since they first began appearing regularly in September 2013.

To be considered for publication in my new Friday column, please keep your questions professional, succinct and focused on the various facets of South Florida’s condo market.

If you intend to name names in your questions, please be sure to provide us your name, e-mail address and telephone number so we can verify who you are before publication.

The unanswered question going forward, as I prepare to write a second weekly column for TRD, is whether the opinions of the readers about the region’s condo market will change more than mine.

Peter Zalewski is real estate columnist for The Real Deal who founded Condo Vultures LLC, a consultancy and publishing company, as well as Condo Vultures Realty LLC and CVR Realty brokerages and the Condo Ratings Agency, an analytics firm. The Condo Ratings Agency operates CraneSpotters.com, a preconstruction condo projects website, in conjunction with the Miami Association of Realtors.

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