The Surging Condo Construction Market in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

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Over 40 new condo buildings are planned for Fort Lauderdale

The luxury condo business in South Florida is booming again with thousands of new condos. The details are featured this week at

“Florida Condo Boom”

Well known as the movie city in “Where the Boys Are” and the “Venice of America” with over 300 miles of canals, rivers, bays and the ocean, Fort Lauderdale is where much of the new South Florida condo market is moving.

Condo construction has been booming in the Miami area since 2012 but more recently has moved 25 miles further north toward Fort Lauderdale as developers look for new buyers and more affordable land. With oceanfront land near Miami Beach reaching astronomical levels, the biggest South Florida developers have set their sites on Fort Lauderdale, Hollywood and Pompano Beach for the newest beach projects. It looked like the condo boom days again in December when a new development just north of Fort Lauderdale launched sales for the Villas By The Sea project of 51 condos. Five people camped out for two days to be first in line to buy the pre-construction condos. Despite several price increases, the project is almost sold out with just one ocean view unit left – a two bedroom with 1,835 square feet at $1,591,980.    

Fort Lauderdale attracts a higher percentage of buyers from the United States and Europe than Miami which is more oriented to South and Central American buyers. Western Europeans account for 8 percent of home sales in Miami but 18 percent in Fort Lauderdale. The improved U.S. economy and strong dollar are also helping propel the Fort Lauderdale condo market with buyers from the East Coast. It's easy to find a New York sports bar in Fort Lauderdale where the Yankees had their baseball spring training camp from 1962 to 1995.

The biggest factor driving buyers up I-95 is price with about a 40 percent discount from Miami. New condo prices in the best Fort Lauderdale areas average less than $500 per square foot but over $850 in Miami. While the Miami condo market has slowed down a bit with several projects canceled, Fort Lauderdale is surging with over 40 new buildings and 3,300 units proposed for the downtown and beach areas. New luxury developments include Four Seasons, The Ocean and Auberge. The nearby Pompano Beach condo market is also busy with several beach projects underway, and a $1.5 billion Metropica development in Sunrise with over 2,000 condos is close to starting construction.

Two recent record-setting sales illustrate the difference in oceanfront prices when the penthouse at Faena in Miami Beach set a price record of $60 million or $4,794 a square foot. The penthouse at the Ritz-Carlton on the Fort Lauderdale Strip also just set a new sales record when it sold for $4.4 million or $1,556 per foot. A developer recently paid $23.5 million for a North Miami Beach strip club on two acres about one mile to the Atlantic Ocean that they will likely demolish and build more condos.

For a quick look at the Fort Lauderdale and Florida condo markets, visit is a different kind of real estate website. It has been featured in many of the country's top media websites including Time, CNBC, Yahoo, USA Today, AOL, NBC and CBS MoneyWatch.

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Terry Walsh
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