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ISG principal Craig Studnicky calculates that countywide the ratio of absentee to permanent condo owners is about 40/60.

“It was higher 10 years ago,” he says, “but many now have their green cards and live here permanently or are early retirees from the New York area.”

While Brickell buyers are almost exclusively from South or Central America, Mr. Studnicky says, “moving north to Aventura and Sunny Isles there’s a bigger mix of people from the Northeast.”

Miami sees two annual influxes of snowbirds, he says – “those from the Northeast, who are here now, and South Americans who come here to escape their winter in June, July and August. So none of these buildings is ever fully occupied.”

EWM’s David Siddons cautions against too much generalization. While he says his impression is that the downtown-Brickell market where he is active is about 80% either snowbirds or investors renting their units out, “that said, a number of buildings such as The Palace, Santa Maria or buildings on Brickell Key are not anywhere near that. They are family-friendly buildings that attract primary residents.”

Like many other brokers, Mr. Siddons says, he is seeing more clients in the past three years who initially planned to live in their unit for only a couple of months a year but “end up using it a lot more than they ever anticipated.”

Read Full Article | Published January 26, 2016

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