Citing continued interest in the South Florida office condo market, Realtor Association of Greater Miami and the Beaches (RAMB) Vice President of Commercial, Paul Cauchi, lead a panel discussion on the opportunities and financial implications facing both investors and end-users interested in office ownership. Joining Cauchi for the discussion were Marcello Agostini, Fortune International’s director of sales for 1200 Brickell, Rodrigo Gomez, co-director of sales at 1200 Brickell, and Luis de la Aguilera, executive vice president/lending group for TotalBank. The seminar took place at 1200 Brickell.
According to the panel of experts, the office condo concept has been around for 30 or 40 years, but only in the past five years has it truly garnered significant attention.
In describing the office condo purchaser, Agostini said there are two distinct demographics. The end-user who intends to occupy the office buys as a hedge against future rent escalations, and the investor who receives an immediate cash flow stream from a tenant-in-place. Both types are investing in the potential appreciation owning an office might yield in the long term.
The past several years in South Florida saw most of the developable land in the urban core going to residential projects, said Agostini. That has created a scarcity of prime office space in the Brickell area and has been responsible for 29% year-on-year increases in office rent. Office ownership protects the owner from those kinds of increases which can dramatically affect a company’s overhead costs, he said.