Trover said the construction of vacation homes -- which are concentrated
in Osceola and Polk counties -- has slowed with the rest of the residential
real-estate market. "Some builders aren't moving forward with their
projects," Trover said. But the Orlando/Orange County Convention & Visitors
Bureau said it wants to know more about the growing business. It is
working with the Kissimmee Visitors & Convention Bureau to create a
system for tracking the sector. "I think vacation rentals are becoming
increased competition for hotels, because their share continues to grow,"
said Orlando/Orange County CVB Research Director Daryl Cronk. "I hope
this will create a more complete picture of the industry."
Pressure on the supply-side continues, the report said, especially
in areas such as Altamonte Springs, Casselberry and Apopka, and rents
are forecast to rise less than 3 percent in the coming year as a result.
The west Altamonte Springs area, for example, had an 8.3 percent vacancy
rate during the third quarter, the weakest of 10 submarkets surveyed
by Marcus & Millichap. "Over the longer term, however, demand arising
from continued population growth will ease the current imbalance of
supply and restore the apartment market to a more normalized performance
level," Linwood Thompson, managing director of the company's national
multifamily-housing groups, said in the report.
In the Pine Hills neighborhood northwest of downtown Orlando, the
Misty Oaks apartment complex on Colonial Drive is offering two months'
free rent for one-bedroom, one-bath units. That submarket is laden with
apartments, and turnover in units is high. Ali Muhammad, dressed in
a Santa outfit, has been waving a bright yellow sign with the two-month-free
deal at Misty Oaks. The complex is "also giving away a free iPod [digital
music player] or $150 gift card. It's not on the sign," Muhammad said.
"Merry Christmas and Happy New Year." Chambers, marketing manager for
RP Realty Partners, said the growth of Baldwin Park's commercial center
and a "substantial capital investment" has made its northeast Orlando
rental complex more popular with an upscale crowd of business professionals.
The improvements, he said, include state-of-the-art security, major
face-lifts to all of the common areas, and a new on-site leasing-and-management