South Beach & Miami Beach lofts were almost unheard of until the real estate boom from 2002 to 2005. As developers looked for something fresh and unique, the loft craze took off and yet still only make up a small fraction of Miami condo inventory. Originally popular with artists, they are now highly sought-after by others looking for open “creative” space. Different than the normal boxed in condominium, a loft condo is a 2-story adaptable open space created for residential use. While some of these loft units were created by developers during the renovation of old buildings such as found in Downtown Miami, a number of them are brand new mid-rise developments as seen along the Miami beaches.
The loft term was used loosely in 2003 with loft condos becoming difficult to acquire and typically priced over $500,000 while today they begin as low as $275,000. Loft-style refers to an open space with high ceilings and typically only 1-story, while a true traditional loft is a 2-story floor plan usually opened up from the living room (as seen below) exposing the upper or lower areas. A Miami loft is not to be confused with a townhome which has the open areas enclosed adding additional interior space yet having stairs leading to the upper level of the residence. Both types of lofts offer buyers or tenants proximity to urban amenities afforded by traditional lofts, but without perceived safety risks of living in economically depressed formerly industrial areas. Below we will explore Miami Beach loft condo inventory and the differences from South Miami Beach up to the island of North Bay Village and North Beach (NoBe) and in no special order.