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Renting and standing out in a crowded, hot, highly competitive Miami and Miami Beach rental market

Updated: Apr 10, 2023

Miami is one of the hottest rental markets, with landlords getting over ten applicants per listing. Miami is a vibrant city that attracts new residents from all over the world, and it has picked up even more due to COVID-19 and companies offering remote work options to their workers. Miami Beach and Miami Downtown are both popular neighborhoods for newcomers to Miami.


The best ways to ensure that the landlord will choose your application is through establishing yourself as a qualified applicant. To establish yourself as a qualified applicant in a hot market may require a bit more. To make sure you stand out in this competitive Miami rental market, here are some resources on how to prepare for an apartment search.



In this article:


What is a Miami rental market like compared to before COVID-19?

Miami is one of the hottest rental markets in the United States. The competition for apartments and condos is fierce, with landlords receiving multiple applications per listing.

The Miami rental market is very different from before the pandemic. For example, according to zumper.com, the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment before January 2020 was $1,750. The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment has been as high as $2,600 as of December 2021 and is $2,300 as of January 2022.


In Miami Beach, the average rent price for a one-bedroom was $1,600 in January of 2020, it's currently $2,250.


Miami

January 2020

January 2020

Studio

$1,577

$1,850

One Bedrom

$1,750

$2,310

Two Bedroom

$2,250

$3,101

Miami Beach

January 2020

January 2022

Studio

$1,350

$1,663

One Bedroom

$1,650

$2,250

Two Bedroom

$2,500

$3,940

Data provided by Zumper.com



Why you should hire a real estate agent in this market

More than ever, it will be essential to hire a good real estate agent as they can help you see apartments and maneuver through the sometimes complex transaction of renting in Miami. Don't worry; this will not come out of your pocket as it does in cities like NYC. In Miami, real estate agents are compensated by the landlord's agent.


Things that real estate agents offer:

  • Help you find new listings quickly

  • It gives you better access to view properties for rent since many rentals are on a lockbox and can be accessed by agents

  • Give you advice through the transaction

  • Help you position yourself as an ideal tenant

  • Schedule and coordinate tours

  • And more


As an listing agent that focuses mainly, I can tell you that hiring the wrong agent can cost you money and cause you to lose out on apartments. Hiring the right real estate agent is key; not all real estate agents are created equally in Miami. Many are either part-time or plain and simply not good, unorganized, and untrustworthy. Do your due diligence and research real estate agents that work with tenants in the areas you're interested in.


How to find an apartment in Miami

If you're looking for an apartment in Miami, you'll need to do some research to find the best neighborhoods and areas for you. Miami is a large city with many communities that offer different lifestyles and amenities.


When looking for an apartment in Miami, it's essential to consider your budget, commute time, and lifestyle. Miami has many popular neighborhoods with newcomers, such as Miami Beach, Miami Downtown, Brickell, Wynwood, Midtown Miami, and the Design District.


Many listings may show that they are available but may have a lease pending, and listings aren't lasting on the market for long, so it's essential to act quickly.


Miami neighborhoods that are popular with newcomers

Miami Beach, Miami Downtown, Brickell, Wynwood, Midtown Miami, and the Design District are some of the most popular Miami neighborhoods for newcomers.


Park West is a neighborhood that is up and coming with new luxury and ultra-luxury condo buildings and nightlife.


Brickell is known for its luxury condos, nightlife, and restaurants. The Miami River runs through the neighborhood.

Miami Downtown is the business district of Miami and is home to many high-rise buildings. Brickell is a neighborhood known for its luxury condos and nightlife.

Wynwood is a trendy neighborhood known for its art galleries and murals.


Midtown is a hip neighborhood with many restaurants and bars.


Edgewater is an upcoming neighborhood along Biscayne bay known for new luxury buildings.


Miami Beach is known for its beautiful beaches and Art Deco architecture. There are also multiple neighborhoods on Miami beach.


The cost of living in Miami

Miami has become a city with a high cost of living, with the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment being $2,000. Many would say that the cost of living was high before the pandemic, but that was mainly due to the city's low income. There weren't many high-paying jobs in the city, but more and more companies are relocating to Miami, and many people moving to Miami are working remotely.


In Miami, specific neighborhoods are more expensive than others. The areas that are the most expensive are Miami Beach, Miami Downtown, Brickell, and Wynwood.


The cost of living in Miami can be difficult for people who are not used to living in such an expensive city. But it can be considered a good deal from people moving from cities such as NYC and LA, as there are no state taxes in Florida.


Average rent prices for a one-bedroom apartment in Miami areas of January 2022

Park West

​$3,500

Brickell

$3,200

Downtown Miami

$3,000

Wynwood/Midtown

$2,785

Edgewater

​$2,760

Miami Beach

$2,250

Data provided by Zumper.com


What Miami landlords are looking for

Miami landlords are looking for qualified applicants. This means ensuring a good credit score, stable job, and positive rental history. You can highlight these things in your application to ensure that you stand out from the crowd.


Now there's a difference in landlords: private landlords own individual units, and rental communities or corporations own the entire building and offer every unit for rent.


Private landlords are looking for qualified applicants that will also take care of their property and tenants that will stay long term and renew the lease. The best way to stand out with a private landlord is to have all of your paperwork ready to go and be more personable. Send a video or type up a short bio about yourself to give to the landlord. When I worked with tenants, this always helped my clients stand out. Like I said earlier, many real estate agents aren't great and don't even have their clients provide all the documents needed for landlords to make an educated decision.

Corporations/Rental Communites are a bit different. They're going mainly, if not solely, off of numbers. The person who has the best income credit score and gets their application quickly is more likely to be chosen. Make sure you have your documents together and stay in contact with the leasing agent of the building.


Pro Tip

If you hire an agent, make sure they inquire about apartments in rental communities and Rent By Owners. Not all communities post listing in the MLS and may not compensate agents. For Rent By Owners also do not post in the MLS or pay real estate agents, so many real estate agents ignore the two, which can cause you to lose out on potential apartments.


Tips for standing out in the hot Miami rental market

To increase your chances of being chosen as the tenant, standing out from the other applicants is important. One way to do this is preperation. Here are some tips:

  • Start your search early. Starting your search early can help you determine which neighborhoods will be best for you, have an idea of the prices, and know what you will get for the price you pay.

  • Research different neighborhoods in Miami. Miami is a large city with many other neighborhoods to choose from. Make sure you find an area that fits your needs and lifestyle.

  • Start saving up; many tenants are offering to pay 3, 6 months in advance and even an entire lease term.

  • Improve your credit score if possible. A applicant's redit score is one the more importnt thing landlords look for. Ideally, you want to have a higher credit score than 680. For Non-American citizens, you will most likely need to pay more rent upfront since you may not have established credit.

  • Be prepared to pay more than the listing price. With many listings getting more than a few offers, many apartments are getting into bidding wars.

  • Get all of your documents together now. Have a copy of your photo ID, last three pay stubs or bank statements, pet documents, landlord recommendations, and credit report ready to go in a folder to provide to your agent or landlord.


Conclusion

Miami is one of the most popular rental markets in the United States. With so many people vying for a limited number of apartments and condos, landlords are often overwhelmed with choices. This makes standing out as a qualified applicant essential. In this article, we've outlined some tips on doing just that. Applying these principles will help you secure your dream Miami rental property!

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