Not only has the Orlando region grown by 20 percent in population, it is rated top for job growth in four consecutive years, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. There are infrastructure projects underway worth $10 billion and nearly a billion in downtown development. In the face of all this growth, Orlando also has the third greatest rental shortage in the country, following Las Vegas and Orlando.
You can see multiple midrise condo/apartment projects under construction in all directions, similar to Miami's boom just before the last recession. These are projected to fill faster due to certain growth projections, however.In March of 2018 Professional Builder magazine claimed that Orlando was one of the top five first-time buyer-friendly cities in the country. The average price of a home last year in March was between $169,300 and $186, 800. (The house below, designed by John Henry, is a 14,000 SF French custom home built on the northwest part of Orlando on Lake Brantley)
And what makes Orlando so attractive to home buyers? Let me count the ways.
1. Great neighborhoods with large oaks and shaded trees close in. I am talking about Maitland and Winter Park. Pedestrian friendly and Euro minded.
2. Hospitals, restaurants, banks, parks, pet-friendly, kids-friendly, movie theaters -- all within an 8-minute drive.
3. Flip flop weather nearly all year round. Beaches east and west within 1.5 to 2.25 hours! Sand, sun, and fun. Lakes everywhere. Swimming pools in most back yards.
4. Orlando has art museums, a science center, great downtown world-class theaters and events, a Pro indoor basketball court that doubles for soccer and football. Eric Clapton, Elton John, Billy Joel, The Eagles, Paul McCartney, Tom Jones and numerous other acts. And small boutique arts events and shows.
5. Disney, Universal Studios, and Sea World and a host of tourist attractions outside the mainline parks: the largest Ferris wheel in the South, Ripley's, shopping malls, discount centers, etc.
6. A booming economy based on service industries. Orlando adds 1,000 new jobs a week and has an unemployment rate of 3.3 percent, lower than any other Florida city.
7. Housing construction is through the roof, led primarily by multi-family. One of the highest rates of construction in the nation. There is a strong luxury home market as well with creative designs ranging from Modern/contemporary to traditional Mediterranean styles.
8. Low tax structure. No state income tax, 6% sales tax. Cost of living is moderate.
9. 8 hours drive from Atlanta, 3.5 to Miami, and direct flights to Europe, Central and South America via the Orlando International Airport. In two and a half hours you can be in Tampa on the Gulf Coast. Bleached white beaches, a restaurant on nearly every city block, a boating and sun-soaked playground.
East and north of this area are Orlando's and Winter Park's high-end home neighborhoods which are constantly undergoing remodeling, tear downs, and rebuilds. There are no gated communities here. Further north, west, and southeast are the three high-end luxury home communities: Alaqua, Isleworth, and Lake Nona. Each has a private golf course.
There you have it!