Florida Keys Real Estate

Florida Keys Real Estate

Florida Keys Real Estate – The Florida Keys are high on the list of desirable places to live and have a second home. The Florida Keys are also made up of a series of small islands. This means there is limited land to develop, and much demand for the property that exists.

There are few provisions for tall buildings, which makes upward development almost non-existent. All of these things lead to high prices. The cost of owning property, even a small condo, in the Florida Keys is for the wealthy, and there is no getting around that fact. Especially since the Millenium, prices have escalted into the stratosphere, along with the rest of the real estate market in the US. While prices have leveled off and are even falling now, it’s still expensive and if you’re considering buying here, study the market carefully and know what you’re’ getting into.

It may be prudent to wait for prices to fall further, if you see a trend in this direction. However, remember that this is Paradise, and prices will never fall so low that it’ll be cheap to live in the Florida Keys. Try looking into an alternatives like esplanade in Tampa if you’re looking for larger single family homes.

Florida Keys Real Estate
Canal Homes are common in the Keys

Workforce Housing

Communities of the Florida Keys such as Key Largo, Marathon, and Key West have problems with workforce housing because of high real estate prices. Regular low- and middle-income folks who keep the towns running by working as teachers, police officers, fire fighters, and in the service industry have a hard time finding affordable housing.

The escalating prices of the real estate market has priced them right out of the market! This has resulted in droves of Florida Keys residents leaving the Keys for other parts of Florida to find work and live. Fishing charter captains are no exception, and many of them have left as well. Business owners in Marathon and Key Largo have gotten creative and sponsor low-cost buses that run between Marathon at Mile Marker #50 up to Florida City and Homestead, which are the first towns on the mainland as you drive out of the Keys and towards Miami. Workers even get paid for the time they ride the commuter bus. The work at resorts and restaurants, mostly, and live in Homestead and Florida City, where real estate is lower in price. Some resorts have even bought blocks of condos in Homestead to rent out to their workers, another form of workforce housing.

Other forms of workforce housing include new housing set aside for the workforce, in places like Key West and Stock Island, which is just outside of Key West. These stilt homes cost much less than they would at market price and are reserved for people working in Key West and who make under a certain income.

Florida Keys Real Estate
Marathon Florida

Price Differences Within the Florida Keys

From Key Largo to Key West, there are hot spots of higher prices on property, due to location. Old Town in Key West is one major hot spot of high value pricing. You will pay a premium to live in Old Town, close to everything and in pleasant, established neighborhoods. You will also pay a premium to live on a canal or on the water, of course. Some of the lower priced areas would be Big Coppitt Key, which is only ten miles outside of Key West, and Big Pine Key, which has few choices for shopping and is 30 miles from Key West, 20 miles from Marathon. The closer you are to town, the more you pay, it seems in the Keys.

You will also pay more for a conch house, found mostly in Key West’s Old Town. These are 1800s wooden cottages inspired by Victorian style. They look lovely when fixed up and decorated, and they are clustered in quaint, tree-lined neighborhoods in the heart of Key West’s downtown so they are very attractive to buyers. However, you may gasp when you see what you are really getting for the price. What you are getting, physically, is an old wooden frame house no bigger than a small apartment, usually. They aren’t usually raised off the ground, and they seem flimsy in the face of hurricane, when compared to a home made of concrete blocks. But people love them, and they are beautiful.