Author Archives: Andres Larin

Ultimate Guide to Buying A Condo In Brickell

First Step- Get Pre Approved

FYI Keep in mind that this step is not necessary if you’re buying with cash. It is key to locate a well-known mortgage banker with a good reputation to get pre-approved. We have a few preferred lenders that we can recommend. It is crucial to avoid making any unusual deposits or debits from any of your accounts during the mortgage approval process and avoid any large purchases on credit. These things can lead the lender to delay or decline your application and lead to a host of other issues that you would much rather avoid. To get pre-approved you will need at least 2 pay stubs, 2 bank statements & 2 years worth of tax returns and running a credit report.

Second Step – Initiate that Contract

Now it’s time to get the contract in motion. Remember that it is very important to include an inspection contingency as well as a financing contingency (if applicable) in your contract offer. It is in your best interest to advise your lender that you aim to close by the financing contingency deadline, this will save you a lot of time and energy. Inspections will take on average 10 days while financing contingency 45 days. The closing period is 45 – 60 days if financing or 20-30 days if cash.

Third Step – The Questionnaire

Perhaps the Holy Grail that is required by lenders to assess the financial and legal standing of any condominium project, the questionnaire is a must when entering a new contract whether you’re financing or not. There are two types of condo questionnaires that you can ask from your lender. The first is known as a full review condo questionnaire and the other is a limited review condo questionnaire. It is important to understand your lender needs to approve both the buyer and building in tandem. 25% down payment is the threshold which will determine what form of the questionnaire you should order. Full review questionnaires are for <25% down payments and limited review is reserved for >25% down payments.

Fourth Step – Appraisal

Updating your mortgage banker with the required paperwork is vital to avoid another review of your file, which can increase the chances of even more stipulations and requested documentation. After your appraisal arrives at or above the contract price you should begin applying to the condo association which will take 7 days. This time period can possibly collide with the timing for the appraisal. 

Fifth Step – Go Over Those Financials

Now it’s time to review your latest end of the year financial statements, budget of the building, and rules. If you find yourself conflicted over anything during the reviewal process you are entitled up to 3 days to look over and cancel, enabling you to avoid tricky rental restrictions that can come up out of the blue. But the most important thing to review is the budget which needs to have at least 10% in a reserve account for you to get adequate financing, local portfolio loans can be an alternative.

Sixth Step – Title Search

In this step it’s important to locate a well-known and local title firm or a reputable attorney to conduct a  title search and a municipal lien search while making sure the annual real estate taxes are recent. Keep in mind that the title company needs to order the estoppel letter from the association on time to avoid delay. If you aim to use the seller’s title company an attorney should definitely review the title commitment and the transfer documents to make sure everything is in order.

Seventh Step – Look the Property Over

This is an important step that some people do not perform but is essential to make sure the property is in order. From creepy critters to damages things can happen and it is crucial that everything is in check before you make your investment. Issues like these are not immune to any property and that is why the final check must be carried out.

Eighth Step – The Closing Disclosure or HUD-1

The Closing Disclosure or HUD-1 needs to be gone over as quickly as possible and you have a 3 day waiting period between receipt of the Closing Disclosure and the actual closing. The speed of your closing is contingent on you completing the reviewal of this document. 

Ninth Step – Closing Time

Congrats, it’s now time for closing. You will need to forms of ID and your association approval along with the ALTA Master Settlement Statement. This statement will stand as proof of purchase until the deed gets recorded and mailed to you with your title insurance policy.

Tenth Step – Tax Deductible and Homestead Exemption

The final step, this is it folks. It’s now time to go over your tax-deductible expenses with your accountant. If your property is going to be your primary residence make sure you apply for the Homestead Exemption. The Homestead Exemption savings are transferable from previously sold homes making the process more convenient for experienced home-owners.

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As we’re all dealing with the effects of COVID-19 in our lives, I want to share encouraging news: the government has approved the $2 trillion Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act which will help millions of people in this critical time.

This sweeping legislation is unprecedented in the history of our nation and provides significant economic assistance to address the impact of the COVID-19. The CARES Act is over 800 pages long, but here are some of the economic provisions most relevant for you:

If you’re eligible for a cash payment

Most individuals earning less than $75,000 can expect a one-time cash payment of $1,200. Married couples would each receive a check and families would get $500 per child. That means a family of four earning less than $150,000 can expect $3,400.

If you or someone you know has a lost a job

States will still continue to pay unemployment to people who qualify. This bill adds $600 per week from the federal government on top of whatever base amount a worker receives from the state. That boosted payment will last for four months.

If you’re a small business owner

The bill provides $10 billion for grants of up to $10,000 to provide emergency funds for small businesses to cover immediate operating costs.

There is $350 billion allocated for the Small Business Administration to provide loans of up to $10 million per business. Any portion of that loan used to maintain payroll, keep workers on the books, or pay for rent, mortgage and existing debt could be forgiven, provided workers stay employed through the end of June.

If you’re a freelancer or independent contractor

Typically, self-employed people, freelancers and contractors can’t apply for unemployment. This bill creates a new, temporary Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program representing $600 per week through the end of the year helping people who lose work as a direct result of the public health emergency.

If you would like to learn more about all the contents in the CARES Act, please see this article:

Please do not hesitate to reach out should you have any questions, or if you would like to chat.

Stay safe and healthy.

Andres Larin

Brickell Q3 Market Report 2019

Our latest Q3 market report will equip you with the insights to excel when it comes to your real estate investment. In this report, we will be focusing in on the Brickell condo sector of Miami.


Top 5 Takeaways from Brickell Market Report

  • This is THE TIME to purchase premium properties upwards of $1M as the current decrease in inventory of premium properties in Brickell will make penthouse and high level condos increase in value over the next decade yielding lucrative investment potential.

  • Remember to look for UNIQUE characteristics (Ex: corner spaces, wrap-around balconies, stunning views) when investing in properties that you intend to turn over because that will maintain and enhance the value of those properties regardless of market conditions.

  • If you are a first time condo buyer this is also a great time as the modestly priced options you have in the current Brickell market are numerous and you are certain to find a property that will fit your budget with many reasonable options sprouting up all over. 

  • Expect the volume of premium properties upward of $1,000,000 to make a jump from the current inventory levels in the next couple of years.

  • The increase in ultra-luxury properties in the near future will enable the Brickell real estate market to draw a massive amount of demand for not only pricey spaces but modestly- priced condos as well, transforming it into one of the most popular places to live in South Florida.

Condos Between $0 – $500k

The common market of condominiums that are priced between $0 to $500,000 has grown in the Brickell region. The surplus of inventory and diminishing demand has caused prices to come down to cater to a consumer population that was unwilling to spend that high amount. 

Inventory Change


There has been a 1.5% increase in condo listings within the range of $0 – $500k from 2018 Q3. This can be attributed to many modestly priced condominiums expanding around Brickell (Ex: Axis Brickell & My Brickell). Many of these residents cater to the average spending customer showing how there has been a shift towards focusing on low-cost high-quality properties in the Brickell region.

Median Price Per Square Foot Change



This graph above depicts the slow and steady increase in Price Per Square Foot for condos in the Brickell Area. In the near future expect the average PPSQF for Brickell condos to rise across all tiers.

Median Price Change


Median Price within the different price tiers of condos is a fantastic tool to see the perception and mindset of buyers and the subsequent action sellers are taking to entice them. In Brickell the Median Price of condo properties have slightly declined over the past couple of years. The market-wide shift towards more affordable options that are popular to a younger demographic and more cost-aware generation has been the aim of developers recently.

Condos Between $500k – $1M

There had been a steady rise in inventory along the middle of the spectrum regarding condos in the range of $500,000 to $1,000,000 before plateauing this year. This spike in inventory can be directly attributed to the development of new buildings in the area like Rise & Reach of the Brickell City Centre, SLS Lux, and Brickell Heights which offered a host of modestly priced condominium options. The surplus of inventory and diminishing demand has caused prices to come down to cater to a consumer population that was unwilling to spend that high amount. 


Inventory Change


Listings in the $500k – $1,000,000 have reduced to the tune of – 6.7% over the past year. This can be attributed to the trend that condominium residences are making towards increasing more cost-friendly options on the market to cater to a larger portion of the consumer population.

Median Price Per Square Foot Change


This graph above depict the slow and steady increase in Price Per Square Foot for condos in the Brickell Area. While the average PPSQF for the different price tiers of condos in Brickell has been relatively steady, the $500k – $1M tier has been growing more than the other tiers in the past 5 years. In the near future expect the average PPSQF for Brickell condos to rise across all tiers with the introduction of brand new premium condo development like Una Residences, Aston Martin Residences, and Brickell Flatiron.

Median Price Change


Median Price within the different price tiers of condos is a fantastic tool to see the perception and mindset of buyers and the subsequent action sellers are taking to entice them. In Brickell the Median Price of condo properties have slightly declined over the past couple of years. As far as the modestly priced options, we may continue to experience a slight decrease in average price which is great if your a young professional looking for a reasonably priced space, keep in mind if you want to turn that property over in the future, property value will fluctuate and eventually go back up.

Condos Between $1M – $3M

When it comes to ultra expensive and larger properties, the inventory has fallen off this year as well after an incline in previous years. Currently, the luxury buyers do not visualize the Brickell luxury scene as what it was before because of the lack of premium condo options. But what they fail to recognize is that while the quantity has lessened slightly, the quality of the best properties is constantly improving. In other words, the best of the best in Brickell are only getting better. Market conditions in Brickell will only continue to improve in the next couple of years.


Clients who choose to invest their capital in these properties will be able to leverage the limited supply of these premium properties in the future as well as also being primary owners of these spaces. The current shortage of volume in terms of luxury condominiums in Brickell will make penthouse and high level condos only increase in value over the next decade. Premium penthouse properties in buildings such as Four Seasons Residences, Santa Maria, Asia, and Carbonell will always be in demand and steadily rise in value over time due to the consistently magnificent water views of Biscayne Bay.


As luxurious new properties sprout up in the Brickell community like Una Residence and Aston Martin Residences, volume of premium properties upward of $1,000,000 will make a jump from the current inventory levels. Record breaking prices may be coming on the way as these new residences along with many other brand new projects will aim to satisfy the tastes of the high-end clientele. Currently, residences in other neighborhoods are getting some of these high net worth buyers due to the lack of volume of premium properties in Brickell. The rise of these ultra expensive properties in the near future will assist the Brickell real estate market’s growth and not only draw a massive amount of demand for pricey spaces, but also modestly- priced condos as well.

Inventory Change


When it comes to condo properties in the $1M – $3M range and up the properties are decreasing at a – 14.6 % clip compared to the 3rd quarter of 2018. Many of these premium spaces have stagnated on the market not drawing interest and dwindling in the eyes of the common home buyer. The trend towards more cost-friendly options has resulted in a lack of interest towards this product.

Median Price Per Square Foot Change


These graphs above depict the slow and steady increase in Price Per Square Foot for condos in the Brickell Area, The PPSQF metric may seem non-important considering the lack of major changes recently, but be assured this is far from what to expect. In the near future expect the average PPSQF for Brickell condos to rise across all tiers with the introduction of brand new premium condo development like Una Residences, Aston Martin Residences, and Brickell Flatiron.

Median Price Change


Median Price within the different price tiers of condos is a fantastic tool to see the perception and mindset of buyers and the subsequent action sellers are taking to entice them. In Brickell the Median Price of condo properties have slightly declined over the past couple of years. As mentioned prior, the market-wide shift towards more affordable options that are popular to a younger demographic and more cost-aware generation has been the aim of developers recently. Fear not though as premium properties will always maintain their value due to their unique characteristics and an uptick in price will come for the properties that lie in the high tier upwards of $1M in the near future.

If You’re a Buyer

This is an ideal time to get a great deal for a premium Brickell condo. The market is ripe for growth as premium properties being in limited supply will only help increase their value. On top of that, Brickell is home to some of the most luxurious condo buildings in South Florida. Also, if you are thinking about potentially turning over your investment in the future, you want to aim to find unique properties that have special features like tremendous views, corner units, functional floor plans, perks, or even unique designs as this will only help increase value in the coming years. Buildings that attract end users will Contact us and let us help you get a head start on the search and make the best possible decisions for you!

If You’re a Seller

It’s all about the right price if you’re selling a property currently in the Brickell market. The allure of the Brickell area extends far beyond the properties themselves as the community is experiencing a boom when it comes to entertainment, shopping, and events. With the surplus of inventory, it is imperative to be competitively priced in order to move product, especially new product. Additionally, you want to aim to market your property to a larger audience other than just South Florida. This will increase exposure which is key when it comes to finding the best buyer. Contact us today so that we can show you our marketing strategies that are proven to maximize.

Best Return On Investment Brickell, Miami

Better ROI (Return on Investment): Miami Condos vs. Miami Homes

Who doesn’t aim to have the best possible return on investment? Real estate owners all over Miami are constantly looking for the best condos to purchase so that they can turn them over for a profit in whatever time frame they so please. In real- estate investing it is key to keep in mind a couple of predominant factors, the market, the subject property, and of course the biggest, LOCATION! Buyers these days are weighing these factors and a large portion are now looking at purchasing single family homes with the idea of flipping them in the future. This short guide will highlight the pros and cons of purchasing condos and homes in the Miami area with the intent of leveraging their investment benefits.

Why Choose A Miami Home Over A Condo?

Potential Appreciation

Homes in Miami tend to be more stable in terms of price fluctuations compared to their condo counterparts. Even though some condos tend to grow exponentially in value, the market is very volatile and unpredictable. On the other hand the housing market in Miami is the definition of stability and is growing steadily. Additionally, the amount of homes in Miami is not high even though there are many potential buyers with young families. This limited supply makes it a hot commodity for potential buyers.

Lower Overall Costs

Owners of potential condos have to spend maintenance fees for their own unit as well as condo fees in general. These fees are known to be very costly and higher than the maintenance and insurance fees of homes. This potential spending can be saved for home improvement or something else if you choose a home over a condo when it comes to your investment.

Renting Capabilities

Renting your home out in Miami is easy and comes with no time restrictions. On the other hand Miami condos have strict rental restrictions permitting rentals only once or twice every year. Additionally, there are higher costs when including condo maintenance, making the rent higher and the market for your property minuscule.

Price Per Square Foot

Price per square foot of a condo is generally much more expensive than a home. Due to this, owning a home over a condo will yield a better bang for your buck and more space for a fraction of the price.

Why Choose A Miami Condo Over A Home?

SLS Brickell Cover

Lower Miscellaneous Costs

Owning a home comes with the hassle of dealing with many things like the lawn, roof, backyard, patio, and potentially a pool as well. On the other hand condos do not have these features and that subsequently yields less costs when it comes to upkeep for potential buyers.

Tremendous Amenities & Location

One of the well-known benefits of purchasing a new condo residence are the wonderful and world-class amenities at your disposal. With Miami having some of the most luxurious condominium developments in the country, these perks add tremendous value to your condo and can be a game-changer when it comes to renting out your space.

Properties Going For Lower Than Assessment Value

The current Miami condo market features lots of fast-selling inventory. This quick turnover can actually prove to be a valuable point of leverage for potential house flippers. The rapid selling of inventory fosters tremendous investment opportunities if you can purchase properties below market value.

Ultimate Guide to Renting a Condo in Miami

1. Looking for the best possible condo for you! 

The search is the first step to renting your very own condo. Keep in mind that the Miami area is filled with a multitude of enticing condo options and we here at Brickell.com are confident that our listings are the best and most comprehensive available. Head over to our rent tab where you will see a dropdown of all the best rentals in Miami. You can search by specific neighborhoods like Brickell, Brickell Key, Downtown Miami, Edgewater Miami, and Midtown. 

2. Contact Us!

Ok, so you’ve settled on a property that you think is right for you. Great! Now its time to get in touch with us using the Request Details Form on the left side of each property page. It is very important that if you are interested in a property you contact us within 6 weeks of your planned move-in date. This is due to the fact that landlords prefer to avoid keeping the property vacant for extended periods of time. 

3. Let’s Meet!

After you complete the Request Details Form one of our specialized agents will reach out to you to arrange a date and time to take you for a walkthrough of the property. Our agent will work according to your preferences and will recommend other options based on what you desire if your first option doesn’t fit your needs. 

4. This step is if you are unable to visit the property.

If you are unable to come along with our agent to visit the property we will be happy to use Facetime, Whatsapp or take a video to give you a thorough walkthrough of the property. We will also take detailed pictures and provide all the information you need to make the right decision. If you have any questions or concerns throughout the process do not hesitate to ask our agent.

5. Sign the Contract and Make the Offer

After you have made your decision to rent the property you will submit an offer through a Contract to Lease that your Realtor will prepare and forward to you to e-sign. If your offer gets accepted, the following step would entail the landlord signing a formal lease which is usually prepared by the landlord’s agent or attorney.

FAQ – Commonly Asked Questions

1. In Miami is the Real Estate Commission covered by the landlord?

Yes, in Miami the Real Estate Commission is covered by the landlord so the tenant does not have to pay at all. In other major cities like New York this not the case however.

2. How does payment work when renting a condo in Miami?

In Miami first and last months’ rent is paid upfront along with a one-month security deposit when leasing a condo. Keep in mind that most apartment buildings have lower deposit requirements which we provide on Brickell.com.

3. What are the documents that I should have prepared when making an offer to lease a condo in Miami?

The documents that are absolutely necessary when making an offer are your Photo ID, Proof of Funds(employment offer letter or 3 most recent pay stubs), and your most recent credit report with the credit score. This is necessary because some Landlords decide to go through their own approval process which mirrors the Association approval process. This is carried out first to see if they will agree to the Lease with you. 

4. When you rent a Miami condo who pays monthly condo association fees?

In Miami, the monthly condo dues or maintenance fees are paid in full by the landlord. Among the utilities covered include water, sewage, and trash removal. In the newer buildings, the condo dues may also cover services like TV and/or internet.

5. Is it possible to sublease a rented condo in Miami?

Unfortunately subleasing through AirBnB and other services is not permitted in Miami. You can only use these services if you own a property. 

6. What should I keep my eyes open for during the walkthrough?

Your agent will assist you in this process but be on the lookout for:

  • Cleanliness of the unit
  • Any damages that have not been reported
  • Fully functional appliances

Remember that you and your agent will be taking photos and videos the day of you gaining possession of the unit to document the condition. 

7. When will I receive my security deposit back from the landlord?

According to Florida law, the landlord has a total of 15 days to return your deposit if there are no damages. If the landlord decides to claim for damages, a written notice must be provided to the tenant by certified mail along with the landlord’s reason for writing the claim. If the tenant does not dispute the claim within the 15 day period of receiving the notice, the landlord must return the balance of the security deposit within 30 days after the notice was received.

8. After the expiration date on the lease, what should I do to get my deposit back?

Make sure you reference your lease. The standard Florida lease allows for normal wear and tear when it comes to renting a condo in Florida. Although, if the lease was drafted by the landlord’s attorney different stipulations may be involved. It sometimes occurs that landlords demand the property to be in the same or as close to the same condition as it was when the lease began. 

9. How long does it take to get back a Common Area Deposit?

1-2 weeks is the normal time frame following moving out of the building and contacting the building’s management office to formally request the return of your deposit.

10. What about breaking a lease if you’re renting?

Breaking a lease is not recommended but if you need to the fine is typically a 2-month penalty. 

echo brickell penthouse

5 Stunning Brickell Penthouses

These five Brickell Miami penthouses tower above the skyline, featuring amazing views and luxury amenities.

The one-of-a-kind Carlos Otto penthouse (pictured above) is located in Echo Brickell. The two-floor abode offers breathtaking views of Biscayne Bay, the Atlantic Ocean, and Downtown Miami. It spaces four bedrooms and seven-a-half-bathrooms featuring 28-foot ceilings, a 30-foot pool, and four hot tubs. Echo exudes exclusivity via private elevator access with advanced biometric security.

asia brickell key penthouse

Via Asia Brickell Key’s website.

Brickell Key’s Asia building harbors one on the city’s most picturesque penthouses: The three-story home is brightened by panoramic views of Biscayne Bay and Brickell. At 4,834 square feet, the Asia penthouse features a pool, an outdoor wet bar, and maid’s quarters. This four bedroom and five-and-a-half-bath beauty is completely furnished by Artefacto.

jade brickell penthouse miami

Jade at Brickell Bay’s penthouse exudes luxury and sophistication. The Jade building includes five-star resort style amenities to match the breathtaking, direct ocean view. The penthouse’s design is decked out with European fixtures and amenities, 15-foot ceilings, and a state of the art media room.  Jade’s jewel in the sky also flaunts a theater room and oversized terraces. The private elevator entrance keeps this 4,015 square foot penthouse separate from the housekeeping quarters.

santa maria penthouse brickell

The newly renovated six bedroom and five-and-a-half-bath penthouse located in the Santa Maria building has one of the largest terraces in town, sweeping around the 3,250 square foot space. The details include an expansive living room and dining room area, entertaining area, and interior finishes that are nothing short of astonishing. Purchasers have the option to dock their boat as well.

brickell house penthouse miami

Brickell House’s sprawling penthouse is a must-see: At 7,189 square feet, the upgraded space has two kitchens with supreme stainless steel appliances and European cabinetry. The four bedrooms and seven-and-a-half-bath stunner dons 15-foot sliding glass doors with impact resistant glass. It also features a studio office, movie theater, and housekeeper’s quarters with a separate entrance.

If you are looking to invest in a penthouse or condo in Brickell, please don’t hesitate to call Andres Larin at (786) 306-4287 or email at andres@brickell.com.