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22 March, 2024 | Central Florida Rent Decrease – Addison Farms, Steven D. Ogier

Addison Farms Wesh 2 Rent Decrease

6:22 PM EDT Mar 21, 2024 | Read full article on Wesh 2

According to the University of Florida’s Shimberg Center For Housing Studies, 450,000 people moved to Florida in 2021 and 2022. At the same time, new apartment construction was weathering a three-year decline. Fewer units mean higher prices.

But now, that’s all changing.

Monthly median rent in greater Orlando was $1,230 back in 2021. The following year, it jumped by 27% to $1,568. Last year, it crept up another 3% to $1,621.

This year, rent is down 4% to $1,558.

Addison Farms is one of the new apartment complexes in Apopka near the new AdventHealth medical center. Steve Ogier is with the builder and manager, Contravest, and showed WESH 2 around the property.

He says luxury amenities like a gym, a five-star pool with cabanas and a dog park, along with premium flooring, kitchens and modern unit layouts, should make it hard for some renters to believe units can be had for as little as $1,500 per month. Addison Farms is also covering the first one and a half months of rent.

Why have incentives? Ogier says the answer is easy: to compete for business as apartment supply increases. He says cities and counties, like Apopka, that encourage development, help make rental housing more affordable.

“They have had a favorable, or we’ll call it, developer-friendly process to get approvals, and hence, that is why we’re seeing, not only because of the demand, but the city has also allowed supply to come in,” Ogier said.

“Absolutely, we need to increase the overall supply,” said Anne Ray, a manager at the Shimberg Center.

Its new report shows Florida has 862,465 low-income renters. Orange County has 69,821. These cost-burdened renters typically spend 40% or more of their income on housing while leaving little remaining for transportation, food, and medicine.

While Ray agrees apartment construction is critical to filling the rental needs of all incomes, she stresses that dedicated “affordable” housing is vital to put roofs over the heads of people working low-wage, tourism and service industry jobs.

“I would argue that you also need to continue to expand that explicitly affordable housing that’s reserved for people so that rents are affordable and then also they are not competing for higher income renters for the same supply,” Ray said.

When it comes to specifically affordable housing, this year, state lawmakers changed the rules for obtaining incentive money so cities and counties can speed up the process of providing additional affordable housing.

In November, Orange County approved spending $22 million to build 260 affordable housing units set to open this October.

Barnett Villas will be brand new, and Silver Lake Villages will be rehabbed for low-income seniors.

[Read full article on Wesh 2]