Affordable housing remains a national issue, as available multi-family properties remain in short supply and monthly rents rise, albeit at a slower rate in the second quarter of this year.
According to the Tampa Bay Economic Development Council, Florida is among the states with the greatest shortage of multi-family properties, with the Sunshine State gaining more than 444,000 new residents during the pandemic between July 2021 and July 2022.
To help ease the burden on renters, Florida lawmakers passed Senate Bill 102: The Live Local Act. The bill, recently signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis, is expected to create more affordable rental housing by offering multi-family developers new tax breaks, financing, permit simplification and the repeal of some state zoning.
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The law, which takes effect July 1, will allow new apartment development in some previously restricted areas, such as Florida’s commercial and industrial zones, and is being hailed as a boon to developers who have struggled to build new ones. multi-family properties to meet demand.
“Personally, I think it’s a great move. It allows developers to enter areas that zoning did not allow in the past,” Mateo Ramírez, partner at the Miami-based real estate brokerage firm. Grid line propertieshe told Benzinga. There has been price pressure for everyone, and we are not building as fast as we need to to meet demand.”
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The Live Local Act is also drawing praise from loan officials like David Druey, Florida regional president of Centennial Bank, which is deploying more than $300 million to finance affordable housing development throughout southeast Florida by 2023.
“The Live Local Act is a step forward in offering developers an incentive to switch to affordable housing, a sector that will become more resilient to demand as economic conditions change and interest rates remain higher,” he said. Druey to Multi-Housing News.
Specifically, South Florida residents face one of the most significant disparities in the nation between rents and income, especially in low-income nursing homes. Aging Floridians on a fixed income have a hard time keeping up with rising costs of living.
Last year, Kathleen Sarmiento of the Miami-based Alliance for Aging highlighted the shortfall of Florida’s seniors when she told University of South Florida public radio WUSF: “If you’re on Social Security, honestly I don’t know how you can live in Florida because housing costs are high.”
Romero believes the new legislation will result in the development of affordable housing for Florida seniors on a fixed income.
“Raising rents is an issue that affects all residents regardless of age. For seniors, it’s particularly difficult because of their fixed-income status coupled with federal government guidelines that tend to move at a much slower pace than state and local guidelines,” he said. “SB 102 incentivizes developers and opens the development frontiers for affordable housing, which should have a positive impact on supply and therefore rent stabilization.”
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