By Brittany Wallman
May 19th, 2016
Broward’s real estate market continues its upward climb, with property values rising for the fifth straight year.
Every one of Broward’s 31 cities, from West Park to Weston, Pembroke Park to Pembroke Pines, as well as the unincorporated areas, saw positive growth in real estate values, according to preliminary estimates from the Broward County Property Appraiser’s Office. On average, the rise was 7.1 percent over the year before.
The values are estimates based on real estate activity in 2015. Final figures will be released by July 1.
The increases ranged from about 3 percent in Parkland to more than 10 percent in North Lauderdale, the only double-digit performance.
Some cities also benefited from construction booms, with new homes, condos and businesses adding millions of dollars to the tax rolls. With the new development figured in, values went up even higher — 8.5 percent countywide. With the new development factored in, three cities — Parkland, North Lauderdale and Hallandale Beach — exceeded 10 percent gains in overall value.
Leading the construction boom in terms of sheer dollars was Fort Lauderdale, with $31 billion worth of property, nearly half a million of it new in the past year, according to Property Appraiser Lori Parrish’s office.
All told, the value of property in Broward County hit $162.4 billion, nearly $2 billion of it new.
That still puts it below the 2007 peak, when the total hit $176 billion, according to property appraiser data. The numbers started a recessionary plunge from there until the first positive turnabout in 2012.
Parrish said she doesn’t expect values — and thus, prices — to keep soaring. The market “seems to be stabilizing,” she said.
“I’d say we’re settling out,” Parrish said. “I’m not anticipating this big of an increase next year.”
While the uptick in values is good news to homeowners and real estate investors, it can be a double-edged sword. If local governments don’t reduce tax rates in the fall, property tax bills will go up.
Every Broward city but tiny Lazy Lake raised taxes last year, reaping the benefits of the increase in values, a Sun Sentinel analysis in October found.
Broward County officials already have talked about reducing the tax rate in order to limit the increase in tax bills. Those decisions will be made at budget hearings in September.
In email responses to the Sun Sentinel, city leaders said the increases in property values reflect a good quality of life, and a return on redevelopment efforts.
Lauderhill, in the heart of the county, is “creating a supportive community,” said Mayor Richard Kaplan, pleased with his city’s 8 percent increase.
In Pompano Beach, where values rose 7.5 percent, Mayor Lamar Fisher said the emphasis on redeveloping “ultimately will save our residents in tax dollars.” An oceanfront, older city, Pompano Beach has the third highest tax base in Broward, behind Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood.
Eight cities had $100 million or more in new development: Miramar, Davie, Fort Lauderdale, Hallandale Beach, Hollywood, Parkland, Pembroke Pines, and Pompano Beach.
Miramar experienced a 6.7 percent value increase, which grew to 8.5 percent when development was considered.
“The increase demonstrates that the city continues to be a desirable place to live, work, and to start a new business,” Mayor Wayne Messam said. ” … We are quickly becoming the premier city in South Florida.”