Rethinking Fort Lauderdale Real Estate – From Beachfront to ‘Close to the Ocean’

Fort Lauderdale is a dynamic real estate market. Long known as a great place to buy real estate, grow a career, and raise a family, today the next generation of millennials are finding a variety of real estate options. Sometimes in a luxury rental. Need evidence? Look at the construction cranes piercing the skyline. A recent drive revealed almost a dozen cranes. Some have called the construction crane the new state bird. At the Gary Lanham Group at Coldwell Banker Fort Lauderdale Beach Office, we see the signs, and they’re promising for the region.


Throughout downtown Fort Lauderdale, the Flagler Village market, and other areas considered “east” Broward County, many of these cranes are rising over luxury rental apartment complexes. Even with all this new construction we’re still about 10,000 rental units behind demand.

Driving Fort Lauderdale Luxury Rental Apartment Demand

What’s driving all this demand? There’s no simple answer. Certainly, the children of those buyers who purchased homes and raised families in the suburbs today are moving east. As the children become millennial professionals, they’re renting apartments on the path to eventual home ownership.

Even people on the other end of the spectrum, Baby Boomers, are selling their homes across the greater Fort Lauderdale market - from the suburbs to the eastern communities - and looking to shirk all the responsibilities of home ownership and rent. Maybe they’re biding their time on the path to making another purchase. But luxury rental apartments give them options.

In between, we see professionals savoring the South Florida lifestyle. In a concept we’re explored here before, they’re “telecommuting” or teleworking from jobs up north to live in a more welcoming environment. Their employers may be in Boston, New York, or Chicago, but “home” is greater Fort Lauderdale.

What they’re giving up is the higher costs of living - higher rents, taxes, and other expenses - for South Florida’s reputation for affordable living amid a more welcoming climate. Our wonder weather comes with the ocean, beaches, quality of life, and some of the finest restaurants anywhere.

As the Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance calls it, we enjoy “Life Less Taxing.”

Real Estate Supply and Demand

All these new Fort Lauderdale luxury rental apartments play an important role across Broward County. Whether you’re in downtown, Pompano Beach, or toward the western suburbs, people want to live and work here. They need homes. Developers are answering the call.

Affordable housing is a big issue in this marketplace, especially for people who want to live and work here. As we build this inventory of luxury rentals to tackle that dearth of 10,000 units, the law of supply and demand will come into play. As supply rises to meet demand, rents should drop. This will bode well for the entire market.

Because South Florida is more than a home to aspiring millennial professionals or teleworking baby boomers. Firefighters, police officers, school teachers, and others across the civil, working and professional classes struggle to find affordable housing.

The local business community across South Florida has sought to address this shortage. We’re seeing solutions rise throughout the region. Where Andrews Avenue once was the line of demarcation between east and west, today that line has shifted deeper into the suburbs.

We see those construction cranes rising to the west. In communities like Sunrise, Pembroke Pines, and Tamarac, where land prices are lower, developers are building new luxury rental projects. In the eyes of renters, it’s no big deal. In a region where people are accustomed to driving a half-hour to get from Fort Lauderdale north to Boca Raton or south to Miami, a drive east from the suburbs to downtown or the beach is just part of daily living.

Pitching Fort Lauderdale to the World

Developers are adjusting their marketing to pitch suburban living to locals and outsiders alike. They’re promoting their new construction real estate projects. For locals saving for homes, the lower prices seen “out west” give them South Florida living - with money left in their savings.

Then there’s the traditional “northern” market. It’s no secret or surprise that South Florida has lured tourists and new residents from the New York metro area, the Eastern seaboard, even the Midwest. Many have been attracted by proximity to the Atlantic Ocean.

Now, as luxury new construction developments rise in the western reaches, builders are saying, “Live close to the ocean.” If you’re a resident of Minneapolis, Winnipeg, or Chicago, New York, New Jersey, or Connecticut, the warmth of the Atlantic is alluring indeed. “Close to the ocean” is a relative concept. Living 10 miles from the ocean certainly is attractive to someone in Minnesota, Manitoba, or the Metro area.

Those who find that alluring will find Fort Lauderdale delivers quality of life, climate, and wallet alike. Put it within a short drive of the ocean, and that quality is all the better.

Whether for sales or luxury rentals, the Gary Lanham Group wants to be your trusted Realtor. From Las Olas Isles to Lake Ridge to Wilton Manors, and throughout Greater FortLauderdale and Boca Raton, we have made our name by serving the needs of all prospective clients. We excel in helping clients buy, sell, or rent properties across the Fort Lauderdale area. We’ll help you understand what “close to the ocean” can mean to your quality of life.

Gary Lanham Group at Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate is a boutique real estate organization offering sales, leasing, and brokerage services to the Greater Fort Lauderdale area. A listings agent matches home sellers with buyers and tenants with landlords. While Broward County is our universe, we focus on Coral Ridge Country Club, Oakland Park, Wilton Manors, Pompano Beach, and the surrounding areas. Call us today at (954) 695-6518 or visit

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