HOLLYWOOD, FL–Florida’s real estate market continues to sizzle, with some property owners seeing the benefits of smart technology in raising the value of their properties. Florida is among the top 10 trending areas in the US when it comes to smart homes, according to a Google Trends report within a 12-month period.
For instance, Charles M. Adams, owner of a 30,561-square-foot smart home in North Palm Beach, is selling his smart home for a staggering $37 million after purchasing it for $1.5 million in 2015. He custom-built it with a chef’s kitchen, a private salon and spa, a glass elevator, movie theater, a full-house generator and a six-car climate-controlled garage.
Many homeowners may have initially eased their way into automation via a door lock or virtual assistant, but now they see the value of having a custom-built smart home like Adams.
South Florida has something good going for it. Homeowners are showing keen interest in home automation at a time when real estate is booming, fueled by the migration of people from other big cities.
Florida became one of the two main destinations of choice (Texas is the other one) for what many believe have been its advantages: an open economy, lower population density, the absence of a state tax and of course, the tropical climate.
The migration to Florida is coming primarily from Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey and Illinois; it runs second to Texas for movers from San Francisco, California.
The result: properties are now selling 30 percent above its list price, with both home and condo buying in South Florida at an all-time high–30% up for home; 50% up for condos; home improvement projects are also up. In Palm Beach, single-family home contracts over $1 million increased by 268% in 2020 compared to 2019.
Since 2018, Miami Mayor Francis X. Suarez has been working on tech startup initiatives but it was in late 2020 and subsequently after that, when the mayor’s encouraging tweets with tech leaders ignited the spark for companies to move down to Florida.
From December 2020 to January 2021, Miami reportedly saw a net migration of 145%, while the Silicon Valley-Bay Area region saw -47.2% net migration. During the same period, an analysis of 42,666 Tweets found a 129% increase in mentions of moving to Miami. A positive net migration rate means that more people are moving into an area than are leaving it.
Some of the biggest names who moved to South Florida are Keith Rabois, general partner at Founders Fund who purchased a $28.9 million home in Miami Beach last year; David Blumberg, founder-investor of Blumberg Capital, who relocated to Hallandale Beach last December; Jonathan Oringer, founder and executive chairman at Shutterstock, bought a $42 million home in Miami Beach last October; Kim Perell, angel investor and CEO of 100.co who purchased an $11-million Miami Beach mansion last year; and Bill Harris, former CEO of PayPal Holdings and Intuit, who relocated to Miami recently.
In total, there are now 44 billionaires in South Florida, including billionaire investor Carl Icahn who moved his headquarters from New York to Miami.
Below are some companies that are planning to move or have moved to South Florida: