Miami Beach officials want more homes priced below market levels for local workers, and they’re willing to dangle financial incentives that could save developers hundreds of thousands of dollars to build them. However, a few area developers doubted the inducements would be a silver bullet to stimulate construction and make homes in one of the most expensive cities in Miami-Dade County much more affordable.
The Miami Beach commission voted unanimously this week to waive a slew of fees that developers wouldn’t have to pay, if they build lower priced homes for local workers. City officials are expected to give final approval by the end of the month.
“Housing affordability is key to quality of life. With the rising cost of land and construction and high interest rates, all of these driving factors are causing housing to be less and less affordable,” said Rickelle Williams, the city’s economic development director. “We’d like to encourage residents to live and work in the city of Miami Beach.”
Miami-Dade’s housing costs skyrocketed during the ongoing pandemic. Miami Beach saw one of the highest apartment rent increases in the county — a whopping 72% — over the past two years. Landlords have hiked rents to astronomical levels as scores of newcomers, many of them digital nomads earning high salaries in technology and finance, have arrived. In Miami Beach, builders typically pay fees to the city whenever they build a project. The menu of fees are meant to offset the impact their developments will have on community resources and the environment. Under the proposal that passed this week, Beach officials no longer would levy the fees on developers building housing priced for local workers.
Source: Miami Herald