South Florida is a popular destination for boaters, thanks to its warm weather, beautiful waterways, and abundant fishing and diving opportunities. Needless to say, many Americans have opted to relocate to paradise in South Florida causing both the demand and price for housing to skyrocket. In addition, the demand for boat dockage throughout South Florida has also risen tremendously, outpacing the supply. This has led to long wait lists for slips at marinas, and rising prices for boat storage.
Causes for boat dockage demand
- More people moving to Florida: For starters, Florida has been the most popular state for relocation within the country over the past few years. Needless to say, the tropical waterfront lifestyle is a big driver of this.
- More affluent people moving to Florida: With more affluent people moving to The Sunshine State, this means a higher percentage of people that can afford a boat. Needless to say, many of these boats will require dockage.
- The COVID-19 pandemic impact: Boat sales, as well as sales of kayaks, paddleboards, and other water sports, exploded during and after the pandemic. With the push towards more social distancing, boating became the perfect outdoor activity. This led to record boat sales and thus record demand for boat dockage.
Limited supply + high demand = investment opportunity
To put it simply, we can not make more waterfront property with ocean access. Therefore, this means that we have a limited supply. At the same time, we are also continuing to see a rising demand for boat dockage. Although no real estate property is immune from the potential volatility of the housing market, waterfront property tends to not suffer as much as other areas. In addition, these properties tend to recover more quickly from price volatility.
As for addressing the boat dockage shortage, the likelihood of more marinas being built is low considering the cost and time involved. In fact, in recent years we have seen more marinas sell out to developers to make way for waterfront condominium projects. Another approach could be to expand the capacity of existing marinas and/or develop new technologies to allow the automation of boat lifting and storing devices in high-rise storage facilities.
In closing, waterfront property has always been a great investment in areas such as South Florida. With this said, the record-high popularity of boating has only reinforced the potential for investing in waterfront property with ocean access. In fact, in some areas throughout South Florida, homeowners will actually rent out their dock space for supplemental income. It is important to note, however, that you will need to check with your local city ordinances to determine if this is allowable.
Are you thinking about investing in waterfront property in South Florida? We can help! Contact Natasha at Live South Florida Realty, Inc. today! Also, be sure to download our free Florida Home Search app for your mobile device.