With only a handful of new apartment deliveries in Fort Lauderdale over the past year, growing demand for rentals has started to strain the city’s supply.
A new report from brokerage Marcus & Millichap shows a dearth of new construction helped shrink Fort Lauderdale’s vacancy rate to 3.2 percent in the third quarter. Rents, on the other hand, spiked 8 percent year-over-year to an average of $1,614 per month.
Much like Miami, Fort Lauderdale — and Broward County in general — has seen a wave of demand for apartments stemming from buyers getting shut out from the increasingly expensive housing market, according to the report. Even with the county’s median income rising to an all-time high of $55,200, the report states, Broward’s $293,200 median price for a house means homeownership is still out of reach for many residents.
The growing popularity of neighborhoods like Flagler Village among millennials, who typically favor renting over homeownership, is also contributing to the increased demand.
Development activity is starting to ratchet up in response. Of the 7,300 apartments under construction in Broward with delivery dates spread between this year and 2018, 1,800 are within Fort Lauderdale. Even with that influx of new supply, Marcus & Millichap forecasts that vacancies will continue their gradual fall, causing rents to rise. — Sean Stewart-Muniz