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The Sunshine Economy

How Brazilians Have Helped Save South Florida Real Estate

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The years 2009 and 2010 were dark days for Miami real estate. Home prices plummeted. Mortgages imploded. Foreclosures soared.

And buyers flooded in from Brazil.

Since that time, Brazilians have become the top foreign buyers of homes and especially condominiums in South Florida. As recently as June, the largest number of foreign-based online visitors to the Miami Association of Realtors website came from Brazil. In 2011 and 2012, most international buyers of residential real estate in the Miami area came from Brazil.

Still, as the Brazilian economy has slowed, the interest in South Florida real estate slowed too. But for those who can afford it, the interest in our housing market remains substantial.  

WLRN's Sunshine Economy spoke with Brasil Geraldo Filho, a business consultant based in Rio de Janeiro, who already owns a condo about one mile from the beach in Hollywood. He rents that out. He's also having a single family home built in Aventura and plans on living in that house with his family once it’s completed.  

Filho's real estate agent Uiane Lim of Elite International Realty has found the Brazilian influence in the market spreading. She says developers are changing some housing plans to accommodate Brazilian tastes in layout and design.

In a journalism career covering news from high global finance to neighborhood infrastructure, Tom Hudson is the Vice President of News and Special Correspondent for WLRN. He hosts and produces the Sunshine Economy and anchors the Florida Roundup in addition to leading the organization's news engagement strategy.