Friday, July 02, 2010

Foreclosure Roundup

And it goes on and on. The worrying state of business in the US and in Florida is nowhere more evident than in the empty store fronts, deserted shopping centers, warehouses, office buildings.

And in South Florida, we are not the exception. I read daily about bank foreclosures on commercial real estate.
Is this an opportunity?
Unless you believe that the United States will sink like a rock, you must have some confidence that, at a certain point, there will be a real recovery.

Not a recovery sustained by Federal "injections" of money to artificially and temporarily reduce unemployment. But a real change in the economy, when things will revert to what we have known not so long ago. Days when you just go through the newspapers' classifieds and promptly find yourself a decent job. As it was in the good times when worldwide immigrants would flock in search of our number one wealth: Jobs.

Then everything will be alright. People will perhaps reduce their addiction to consumption, live in smaller homes, drive in smaller cars; but everybody who is reasonably trained and educated never be denied of an opportunity to work.

This will be the day when we won't read any more stories like what follows.
And it with this mentality that you could invest today in commercial real estate, because the opportunities are here and tomorrow will possibly be another day.

I read in the South Florida Business Journal - July 2nd, 2010

Magnolia Shoppes hit with foreclosure

Half of the Magnolia Shoppes in Coral Springs was hit with a foreclosure action by a commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS) fund.
Wells Fargo Bank, as a trustee for a CMBS fund originated by Countrywide, filed a foreclosure lawsuit on June 11 against Westview Shoppes Fla, according to Broward County Circuit Court records. It concerns a $12 million mortgage issued in 2006.
Westview Shoppes Fla owns the eastern half of the Magnolia Shoppes, at 9525 and 9545 Westview Drive. Tenants include Anthony’s Coal-Fired Pizza and Mega Discount Liquors. The developer bought the 64,011-square-foot property for $6.2 million in 2004.
The west side of Magnolia Shoppes, which includes a Regal Cinemas movie theater, and its outparcels are owned by different companies and not included in the foreclosure lawsuit.
According to an April report by CMBS analysis firm Trepp LLC, Westview Shoppes Fla was more than 90 days late on the $11.9 million remaining on its mortgage.
Miami attorney Lee Mackson, who represents Wells Fargo and the CMBS fund in the lawsuit, did not immediately return a call seeking comment.
Juno Beach townhome project defaults on $22M loan
A stalled townhome project near the Seminole Golf Club in Juno Beach is targeted for foreclosure.
Branch Banking and Trust Co. filed the foreclosure lawsuit on June 29 against Seminole Ridge LLC, along with managing members Kenneth Page, Matthew J. O’Connor and Gaile Irwin, according to Palm Beach County Circuit Court records. It concerns a mortgage last modified at $21.8 million in 2007 by Colonial Bank, which failed in 2009. BB&T acquired its assets under a loss-sharing agreement with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.
Seminole Ridge obtained approval from Juno Beach to build 31 townhomes at the site in 2007, but little construction has taken place. The site is located at the intersection of Ocean Drive and Celestial Way and it stretches to U.S. Highway 1, about a block from the ocean.
Fort Lauderdale attorney Richard B. Storfer, who represents BB&T in the lawsuit, was not immediately available for comment.
Townhome project loses $22M foreclosure
Coconut Grove-based Bridgeloan Investors won a $22.3 million foreclosure judgment against the developer of the Townhomes of Oak Lane in South Miami.
The judgment against 5700 Dev LLC was based on a $17.9 million mortgage, plus interest and fees. Colonial Bank originally granted the mortgage in 2003, but it was sold to Bridgeloan Investors.
The judge also denied Gamma Construction’s claim to collect on a construction lien.
The site is set for online auction on Sept. 27.
Planned for 40 townhomes, Oak Lane is on the east side of Red Road (Southwest 57th Avenue) between Southwest 74th Street and Southwest 76th Street. The developer is affiliated with George Allen Luxury Homes of Miami, according to its website.
Capital Loft foreclosure puts county loan in peril
If the $22.7 million foreclosure judgment against the Capital Lofts project in Miami goes through, Miami-Dade County’s $1 million loan to the developer could be wiped out.
Aventura-based investment group Capital Loft Miami won the judgment on June 25 against 117 NE 1st Avenue LLC over a $21.1 million mortgage, plus interest and fees. It targets the 47 unsold units in the project at the same address as the developer.
Following a renovation and conversion into condos in 2008, only 13 units were sold. The county gave the developer a $1 million loan to promote affordable housing units, but the judgment in favor of the lender, which is managed by Guy Sharon, has priority over the county’s debt.
Unless the property sells for more than the $22.7 million judgment at the Sept. 20 online auction, Miami-Dade will be left empty-handed.
N.J. investor buys Palm Beach building
An office building in the town of Palm Beach could be headed to a New Jersey real estate firm after its owner lost an $18.6 million foreclosure.

Henry B. Nathan is a Florida Realtor at United Realty Group Inc.

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