The Altman Cos. says it will build rentals in Boynton Beach, Coconut Creek and Pembroke Pines. A fourth complex will be in Kendall in Miami-Dade County, adding 1,110 units to the market.
In the past year, developers have started construction on or announced 42 rental projects in Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade counties, according to Deerfield Beach housing analyst Jack McCabe.
|Jack McCabe (left) interviewed in January by MSNBC Dylan Rattigan|
Demand for rentals in South Florida has increased following the housing collapse. Lenders remain leery of financing condominiums because of rampant overbuilding during the boom, but developers say getting loans to build apartments is much easier.
Altman Chairman Joel Altman said in a statement that rents are stable and occupancies are high in many areas across the country. Construction on the South Florida units is expected to begin later this year.
|Joel Altman Chief Executive Officer of The Altman Companies|
The Coconut Creek, Pembroke Pines and Kendall complexes will feature three floors, private entryways, clubhouses and resort-style amenities.
Altman says it is acquiring the Boynton community from builder K. Hovnanian and will plan a second phase based on the original architectural plans, which include two, six-story buildings with a clubhouse and pool.
Altman didn’t disclose expected rental rates for any of the units.
Earlier this month, a Phoenix developer announced plans to build nearly 400 luxury apartments in Coconut Creek. The first units at Broadstone Cypress Hammocks at 5201 W. Hillsboro Boulevard will be ready early next year, and construction is expected to be complete by spring 2014.
Other projects are planned for Boca Raton, Delray Beach and Fort Lauderdale, among other cities.
The region isn’t yet in danger of being overrun with rentals because so little apartment construction has happened since 2007, McCabe said.
Expected population increases in Florida from retiring baby boomers should support the increased demand for rentals, though another 40-plus apartment complexes in the next year would be a problem, McCabe said.
In 2006, as the housing market started to collapse, the ratio of homeowners to renters nationwide and in South Florida was about 70-30, but it’s now 64-36, he said. Many former homeowners either can’t buy or choose not to bother with owning.
“A lot of people have decided the American Dream may not be such a dream anymore,” McCabe said. “There are a lot of liabilities and responsibilities (to owning) that they didn’t understand before, and they do now.”
©2012 the Sun Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)