By Sean Ballent
Jorge Perez, CEO of The Related Group in Miami, a leading developer of luxury condos in Florida, admits company got caught up in South Florida’s real estate hype. While speaking to a Palm Beach Country business group, the billionaire pointed to a number of factors contributing to the dwindling market. While speculators, asleep-at-the-wheel lenders and regulators, and the pessimistic media are all to blame, the weight of the issue falls on the shoulders of the developers. Related Group and other developers felt that the region’s beauty and draw as a destination overshadowed basic economic principles that hamper lesser markets. These assumptions have proven costly, as many recently built commercial and residential buildings have been forced to drop their prices. Perez predicts 2009 to be a struggle but is still optimistic in believing the South Florida prices will bounce back. The Related Group head encourages people to buy now.