COVID, Taxes Lure Upscale Homebuyers to Florida’s $70MM Serena by the Sea

Share Article

Prolonged isolation due to COVID-19 is creating a growing desire among those living in dense urban areas to seek living spaces that provide more privacy, space, and safety—leading to a sharp increase in demand for properties. This trend is especially being felt in southern parts of the country where lower costs of living and tax rates are additional incentives, says Valor Capital Real Estate Development, whose most recent project is catering to the “new mass exodus”.

Serena by the Sea

“Homebuyers in highly urbanized areas and major metropolises have been increasingly interested in buying more spacious properties in milder climates,” said Regina Sotomayor, COO at Valor Capital. “COVID-19 was perhaps the final impetus many of them needed to finally make the move.”

Two surveys from home listing provider Redfin, found that of their more than 1 million users, 27% searched for homes outside densely populated urban areas between April and May of 2020, the highest since they had begun recording migration data. This shift is being driven by several ongoing factors, the most recent being the pandemic, which eliminated many benefits of working in a global financial hub.(1) Additionally, 50% of Redfin’s users living in New York, Seattle, Boston, and San Francisco would be willing to relocate if they had the option of working from home permanently.(2) Especially attractive is Florida for its warmer weather, greater array of outdoor activities such as golf, and the lower taxes.(3) With the sudden surge in demand for these properties, even buyers who are acting quickly are getting into bidding wars.

“Homebuyers in highly urbanized areas and major metropolises have been increasingly interested in buying more spacious properties in milder climates,” said Regina Sotomayor, Chief Organizational Officer at Valor Capital. “COVID-19 was perhaps the final impetus many of them needed to finally make the move.”

Enter Serena by the Sea, Valor Capital’s Newest Luxury Development

As the lower tax rates are a huge boon for those in the luxury market looking to relocate—and as the concerns over COVID-19 in areas of higher population densities have started to lose some of their allure because of safety concerns, Valor Capital is announcing their newest $70 million project, Serena by the Sea. The 80-unit boutique property overlooks the Gulf of Mexico and is located just minutes away from downtown Dunedin, a city on Florida’s Gulf Coast.

Dunedin is home to several beaches consistently rated among the best beaches in the world—such as the Dunedin Causeway, Honeymoon Island, and Caladesi Island State Park.(4) Dunedin is one of the few open waterfront communities from Sarasota to Cedar Key where buildings do not completely obscure the view of the Intracoastal Waterway and the Gulf of Mexico beyond.(5)

Designed to be a departure from standard luxury condominiums to more open layouts, oversized terraces, and more, residents will enjoy convenience, privacy, and security of thoughtful design and world-class technology. Unit pricing ranges from $627K up to $3.5 million.

Florida’s Tax Incentives(6)

  • No state income tax
  • No estate tax
  • Asset protection benefits
  • Homestead exemption for the first $50,000 of your home value
  • 3% cap on annual assessments
  • 6% state sales tax. Exceptions: Amusement machine receipts, 4%; lease or license of commercial real estate, 5.5%; electricity, 6.95%.

National Migration Trends and Florida’s Real Estate Resurgence

North American Moving Services’ 2020 Migration Report included New York and New Jersey among the top five states for outbound moves, whereas Florida, Texas, and Colorado ranked among the top eight states for inbound moves. Most telling of the national trend lies with the Northeast—four states out of seven in that region have the highest outbound migration, and none of them rank among the top eight for incoming population.(7) In keeping with these recent trends, Florida’s many living advantages has made the state especially desirable for the Wall Street set and the affluent.

  • Florida’s year-round warm climate, plethora of outdoor activity options, as well as its tax advantages are prompting the well-heeled to seek properties around the Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Palm Beach, and Tampa Bay-Clearwater areas.
  • That tax advantage over New York and New Jersey only increased after an overhaul in 2017 capped its state and local taxes at $10,000.(8)
  • The exodus looks to have already started. Moves from New York and New Jersey to Florida rose 4%. Furthermore, Florida was a top destination for New York City residents, rising 10% year over year as of September 2020.(9)
  • Similarly, tax rates in Massachusetts have been driving flight from the state. Now that working remotely has been gaining widespread acceptance, that trend is likely to accelerate. The state has already seen a net loss of $20 billion to states including Florida, where there is no state income tax.(10)

A recent real estate market report also showed wealthy buyers turning away from large metropolitan areas and toward suburban lifestyle living continued through to the end of last year. Notably, suburban centers saw the largest amount of growth where amenities such as square footage, safety, and outdoor greenery are in much greater abundance.(9)

“Even Wall Street has noted that their employees aren’t looking forward to returning to their old Manhattan offices and prefer working remotely,” Sotomayor notes. “The draw of warm weather, swimming pools, and spacious homes—and the fact that much of their clientele is already living nearby provides the perfect mix of incentives for stockbrokers, bankers, and portfolio managers to make Florida their new home state. The market here is just poised to explode.”

Valor Capital’s first Broker’s Event for Serena by the Sea…

…will be held on March 5, 2021 at The Capitol Theatre in Clearwater, Florida. Cocktail hour begins at 5:00 pm. Valet parking will be provided.

The excitement surrounding the luxury property will be graced with guest appearances that include Ryan Serhant, top-producing real estate agent and star of the series Million Dollar Listing and Sell it Like Serhant.

About Serena by the Sea
Valor Capital’s newest resort-style, waterfront condominium development, Serena by the Sea offers relaxed, luxury living where its residents enhance their lives, find solace from the confusion and difficulties of daily life, refresh and prepare to conquer life once again. Serena by the Sea is where one can truly pause and appreciate all that they have achieved. Visit

About Valor Capital
Valor Capital is a subsidiary of Terra Capital Partners SA de CV (Terra Capital Partners). Terra Capital Partners has been in operation for over 15 years (while its main partner has more than 30 years of experience) and is the parent company of several sub-companies and investment funds that each have a specialization in different aspects of the real estate business (shopping malls, corporate offices, residential buildings, and land development. To learn more, visit

1.    Herbst-Bayliss, Svea. “Bankers and Wall Street executives are fleeing New York and moving to Florida in droves as the pandemic makes remote work look more permanent.” Business Insider, 24 Dec. 2020,
2.    Schubach, Alanna. “Smaller U.S. Cities Have Become Real Estate Hot Spots, and Interested Buyers Should Act Quickly.” Mansion Global, 10 July 2020,
3.    Levin, Jonathan and Gordon, Amanda L. “As Wall Street Heads South, Florida Braces for a Gold-Plated Makeover.” Bloomberg Businessweek, 12 Jan. 2021,
4.    “News.” Tampa Bay Times, Tampa Bay Times,
5.    “Dunedin, Florida.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 16 Feb. 2021,,_Florida.
6.    Garber, Julie; “Top 5 Benefits of Becoming a Florida Resident”; 22 July 2020; The Balance;
7.    North American Moving Services. 2020 Migration Report.
8.    Kaplan, Talia. “NY taxes driving Florida real estate: agent.” FOX Business, 08 Feb. 2021,
9.    Dwinell, Joe. “Taxes driving wealth out of Massachusetts and into Florida, New Hampshire: report.” Boston Herald, 29 Jan. 2021,
10.    Lucking, Liz. “U.S. Luxury Market Has Strong End of 2020, Especially in Suburban and Second-Home Areas.”, 09 Fe. 2021,

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Karla Jo Helms
Email >

Daniel Mutter
Email >
Follow >
Visit website