South Florida's rental housing market is booming as foreclosures and price declines have many residents wary of homeownership or simply unable to qualify for a mortgage. Unfortunately, the rental inventory is having trouble keeping pace with the fast influx of new renters to the area.
KangaRent (www.KangaRent.com), a South Florida based real estate brokerage that is 100% dedicated to rentals, sees a lacking inventory when it comes to available rentals in South Florida. KangaRent agents say that the issue lies in excess inventory of homes for sale, most of which are priced at an unrealistic levels simply because the homeowner is underwater on their mortgage. A second problem lies in a large number of potential rentals that are not legally rentable due to the properties being in some level of foreclosure or short-sale "limbo." A third problem is the inventory many banks are holding. If the banks would release some of their inventory for rent, tenants could be placed in these properties, which would essentially be a win for both the tenant and the banks.
Vacancy rates for rental apartments in South Florida have declined over the past year while rental rates have increased. Some new renters are former homeowners who have lost their properties to lenders, while others don't want to be shackled to homes in an uncertain economy. Perhaps the most noticeable segment is young professionals in particular which have soured on owning even though they never have.
"One solution we see to the lacking inventory in South Florida is a call to homeowners who can't sell their current homes to rent it out instead, if you have an empty home, we have your tenant," says Damien Barr, CEO and co-founder for KangaRent. "Tenants are of a high quality these days, which makes being a landlord that much easier. It's really a great option if you can't get the price you need on your home and an alternative to stressful short sale situations. This option may even include monthly cash flow for the landlord."
KangaRent strongly believes if current homeowners can move towards a landlord mentality to match the current renting mentality of many South Floridians, a mutually beneficial harmony can be reached when it comes to our area's housing woes.
"There are many sound reasons to rent your home nowadays if you can't sell it," said Damien.