Florida Rentals Rise in Popularity for Locals While Foreign Investors Buy: Consider the Escalating Complexities in Law and Language
This week, the Miami Herald reported on the increasing popularity of rental properties in the South Florida area. Apparently, several recent independent real estate studies agree that the rental properties are so popular that their rents are rising (especially for the fancier units) and with an occupancy rate of 95% going into 2010, renting in South Florida will be even more popular in 2011.
Meanwhile, these same real estate forecasters are looking overseas for the investment funds necessary to revive the South Florida real estate market. In fact, Florida property is being actively marketed in other countries by such powerhouses as Stirling Sotheby's International Realty as "undervalued" and therefore, a great investment opportunity. Sotheby's International even promotes "Worldwide Auction Realty Services" on its home page.
Leases, Sales - Real Estate Transactions Will Be More Complex Now, Legally and Factually
Combine all this information, and from a legal perspective it's not hard to predict that we will be seeing foreign buyers coming into Florida's jurisdiction not only to buy property under state real estate and contract law - but many will likely rent out those investment homes and condos, at least a part of the time. That means Florida's landlord and tenant law will also come into play.
However with foreign ownership, federal law that deals with United States citizens dealing with foreign nationals will also impact every single one of these transactions - and the foreign nation's laws might apply to the deals, too. Treaties might be involved, for example.
Add to that the fact that property managers, tenants, real estate agents, and others involved in these transactions are going to be communicating in many languages other than English -- inviting foreign investors means folk who speak their native tongue which may well be any number of Asian dialects as well as German, Italian, French, Spanish, etc.
Miami is already known as an international city (for example, we have more international banks than any other metropolitan area in the US), but we may not have seen anything yet - and all because of a depressed real estate market.