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Investors Seeking Opportunities Farther Outside Miami Proper

An investor from the Dominican Republic buying a mélange of properties in the Allapattah neighborhood is just the latest deal in a trend of investors looking outside of prime Miami markets.

Ralph Reguiero with Southeast Management and Consultants

The unidentified investor purchased four lots: 2140 NW 36th St. and 2135, 2141 and 2145 NW 35th St. They include 50K SF of commercial properties, such as an auto dealership, small multifamily properties and vacant lots for the sum total of $3.1M, said Ralph Reguiero with Southeast Management and Consultants, who brokered the deal.

The investor intends to land bank the purchase, but could potentially redevelop the properties into a residential or mixed-use project in the future, Reguiero said.

"The market will determine which route they go," he said.

Some of the retail stores in the Allapattah assemblage purchased by an investor from the Dominican Republic.

Allapattah is the latest fringe neighborhood getting attention from investors as land prices continue to escalate within the city and the Barrier Islands. Even Wynwood has become pricey as big-time investors and developers pick up and redevelop pieces of the neighborhood, Reguiero said.

“You see the prices have consistently risen over the last year and a half,” he said. And that is making Reguiero busy selling in neighborhoods like Allapattah, Little Haiti and Little Havana.

In January, he sold six apartment units to a Dominican investor for $140K/unit, "a very high price per door in the area," he said. Those prices are far less than what similar properties would go for closer to the city.

And as of now, Reguiero is listing a 27K SF corner lot retail property in Little Haiti that could see itself reborn into a 40-unit townhouse development under new owners, he said. Little Haiti is gaining an artsy reputation like Wynwood. 

For developers, pricing may be rising through all of Miami, but the real challenge is just finding properties to begin with, said The Related Group vice president Eric Fordin.

“From my point of view, I'm having trouble finding land opportunities in markets that I feel are viable at this point in time,” Fordin said.

While Related has a stable of projects along Miami Beach and in Brickell, the firm does scout up-and-coming neighborhoods for future projects. Last year, it acquired 1.2 acres in the Wynwood neighborhood to develop, along with Thor Equities, a mixed-use multifamily project called Wynwood 29.

“We're always looking for the next emerging market,” Fordin said. “At the end of the day, they're just fewer and harder to find.”