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Renter's Guide to Miami
Founded in 1870, Miami is Florida’s second largest city. The name is most likely derived from the Seminole word “Mayaimi,” meaning Big Water.
Today, Miami is a trendy vacation destination that is a thriving cultural center best known for appealing weather, clean beaches, vibrant nightlife and its large international banking community.
With average temperatures of 67.2 degrees F in January and 82.6 degrees in July, Miami has international appeal as a winter getaway and bustling metropolitan city.
Cost of Living in Miami, FL
The cost of living in Miami is above average in the US, but public transport is surprisingly affordable. With discounted Metrobus and Express bus and shuttle bus fares, many residents rely on public transport. The discounted Metrorail provides another appealing option. Uber and private taxi companies present other transport possibilities.
Breakfast in Miami’s business district averages about $14.00 but a fast food luncheon costs about $7.00. A good bottle of red wine averages $15.00 while a 3-course dinner in a good Miami restaurant costs about $35.00 per person.
For a 915 sq. ft. apartment, utility costs including water, electric, heating and trash removal average $140 per month. Monthly internet service averages $70.00.
Average Rent in Miami, FL
- Miami, FL Average Rental Price, December 2019 $1,707 /mo
Miami, FL Apartment Rent Ranges
- > $2,00024%
Miami, FL Rent Trends
|Nov / 2016||Mar / 2017||Jul / 2017||Nov / 2017||Mar / 2018||Jul / 2018||Nov / 2018||Mar / 2019||Jul / 2019||Nov / 2019||Dec / 2019|
Average rent is projected to grow by 2% in 2019 compared to 2018.
Please note that projected rent growth is calculated at city level.
Living in Miami
Miami residents enjoy Florida’s no income tax status as well as the vibrant entertainment and shopping scene.
With 109 parks, appealing beaches, a great climate that caters to year round outdoor and watersport activities, residents never lack for things to see, do, and enjoy.
However, Miami is not without challenges. Generally, the city’s education system is overcrowded and underfunded. Miami’s growth has caused serious traffic concerns. Though many residents are bilingual, residents who only speak one language can experience communication issues. As one of the wealthiest cities in the country, many residents feel pressure about the cost of living in Miami.
Things to do in Miami
Golf, tennis, sailing, boating and numerous youth sport teams keep outdoor lovers busy. Miami’s cultural diversity is evidenced by its cuisine, music, architecture, language, business environment, and education centers.
Miami features 629 prominent attractions including Zoo Miami, but nightclubs like Blue Martini Kendall and Ball & Chain also attract a healthy mix of tourists and locals. The Perez Art Center, Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, and Amelia Earhart Park have gained national recognition as intriguing sights to visit and enjoy.
Miami boasts many professional and university sports teams. The Miami Marlins play at Dolphin Stadium in Miami Gardens, which is also home to the NFL Miami Dolphins. The NBA Miami Heat fill downtown’s American Airlines Arena. The NHL’s Florida Panthers call the Bank Atlantic Center in Sunrise home while the Miami FC professional soccer team plays at Tropical Park Stadium.
Miami is renowned for its dynamic music, entertainment and theater culture. Residents and tourists gravitate to the city’s active dazzling nightlife scene. Popular Miami restaurants include Versailles, Ceviche, Crazy About You, and others.
Numerous art festivals, one of the country’s largest international book fairs, a spectacular Martin Luther King Day Parade, the Miami Marathon, the Cadillac Golf Championship, a gigantic International Boat Fair and the popular Miami Fashion week are some of the annual events that bring consumers to the city.
The prominent Matheson family donated land for the city’s impressive Matheson Hammock Park but Miamians enjoy many other stellar parks including: 175 acres at spectacular Biscayne Bay National Park, the pristine setting at North Shore Open Space Park and South Pointe Park in South Beach. Pets are welcome at most of the city’s 19 parks, which also sport playgrounds and accommodating walking and biking paths.
As an international center, Miami boasts compelling shopping opportunities. West of Miami International airport, Dolphin Mall presents more than 200 restaurants and shops and retail stores. The Falls sits on US 1 and is a leading open air mall. Sawgrass Mills is the largest factory outlet center in Miami while Lincoln Road has earned a reputation for its outstanding boutique stores. CocoWalk is another outdoor venue geared to keep shoppers busy and happy. From factory outlets to high end retail stores and small boutiques, Miami has it all.
Employment & Economy
Employment in Miami has stabilized. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), unemployment in Miami in May, 2016, was 5.5%, below the national average of 5.6%. Weekly wages in Miami average $924.00. Significant job growth of 5% has taken place in the financial services sector while construction has seen a strong 8.3% gain. Manufacturing employment has risen 2.6% while government employment has only increased by a modest 0.8%. The professional and business services sector has expanded 2.9% in Miami since March, 2015.
Major Miami Employers
Major employers in Miami include the University of Miami (12,818), American Airlines (11,031), Baptist Health South Florida (11,353), Carnival Cruise Lines (3,500) and Fountainbleau Miami Beach (1,987). Overall, the employment sector has recovered nicely since 2008 with health, education, tourism, and construction leading the way.
Education in Miami
Miami-Dade County Public Schools (M-DCPS) is the nation’s fifth largest school district comprising 392 schools, 345,000 students and over 40,000 employees.
Interestingly, the University of Miami was named most diverse university in the United States in 2015. Florida International University, Miami-Dade College and the New World School of the Arts give testimony to the city’s diverse college and university programs.
Tips for Renting in Miami
Miami is one of the most expensive rental markets in the US. Leases in Miami can be written or oral agreements. Miami leases are quirky in that landlords often attempt to include “automatic renewal” clauses in their leases. Tenants should be careful to exclude or avoid automatic renewals. Another clause that should be negotiated is the tenant’s obligation to comply with new rules. This can change the appeal of the rental. Watch out for “rent may increase” clauses because in Miami rent can spike if demand is strong. The purpose of leasing is to achieve stable rent, not variable rates. Since the recession and housing market collapse in 2008, Miami and Florida have implemented strict eviction processes. Eviction proceedings can commence if rent is three days late.
It is common practice for landlords to collect a one month security deposit and the first month’s rent at time of signing the new lease. Renters’ rights for Miami security deposits require the landlord to refund the security deposit within 15 days of lease termination.
If you are moving to Miami and intend to start a business, you will appreciate the no corporate tax policy.
Check school districts closely because the public school system is weaker than the private school system.
Carefully research your trash and recycling options and providers.
And, at some point, you will need to obtain a Florida Driver’s License as well as register your car with the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles department. Many Miamians opt to use public transport so check availability at your rental home or apartment.
Miami’s healthcare system is strong but be sure to check with your insurer for approved providers near your new address.
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