OVERWHELMED FLORIDA RENTERS STAND TO BENEFIT AS "COVID REFUGEES" RETURN HOME

FROM OUR NEWS PARTNER BOCATRIBUNE.COM 
Sunshine State Rents Expected to Level off in Next Year

Boca Raton, FL – Remote workers returning home could slow Florida’s devastating rent increases while simultaneously creating more affordability issues in New York, according to researchers at Florida Atlantic University and two other schools.

The Fort Myers and Miami metropolitan areas once again rank as the nation’s two most overvalued rental markets, with renters this June paying about 29 percent more than they did in June 2021, figures from the Waller Weeks and Johnson Rental Index show. In fact, the top eight of 109 overvalued markets all are in Florida and had year-over-year rent jumps exceeding 21 percent.

In normal conditions, rents traditionally increase only 3 to 5 percent a year.

But the research from FAU, The University of Alabama and Florida Gulf Coast University indicates that sharp rent increases in Fort Myers, Miami and the other six Florida markets are on pace to slow dramatically in the next year. At the same time, rents in the New York metro area are poised to rise about 21 percent by June 2023.

The main reason for this trend appears to be temporary Florida transplants returning home to New York, said Ken H. Johnson, Ph.D., an economist in FAU’s College of Business. Many workers fled New York because of COVID-related restrictions and worked remotely from Florida, but now firms are requiring their employees to come back to the office.

“Those COVID refugees placed a significant burden on the demand for rental units in Florida, and rents spiked to historic highs while New York became slightly more affordable,” Johnson said. “With those workers returning home, Florida should see a cooling in its rent hikes, and New York renters will again have to deal with much higher rates.”

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