What do Nice Ladies Do?
The End of the Saga of Marina Grande on the Halifax
I have been getting calls about Marina Grande on the Halifax for more than 10 years. Used to get into the details explaining things happening and not happening. Nobody cared about this magnificent project at that time. There were no sales, no money, Realtors couldn’t care less about it…
And then, a knight on a white horse came, I believe, in 2012 and things started changing. That knight was Brett Dill representing Swerdlow Group. They were the original developers of the project together with Boca Developers, but later Boca bought them out. After Boca Developers drowned in the crisis, Swerdlow with their new partners got back the property from the lender as a bulk purchaser.
Things started looking promising. Now there was a website for the property, people who were set to sell it, and while I kept getting calls, the Buyers were going to the property website and were buying from nice ladies, that were changing like gloves in winter, along with their respective companies that were coming and going, as no company can create the market, and the desired market was not there yet. They were all great companies, but there were few sales.
So, I became an information provider, and while I love it, I never learned to monetize it; I am a real estate broker who writes. I probably, brought over 20 buyers to them, but they never set the site to work with the outside brokers, and I stopped promoting them.
In 2018 the tired Swerdlow and partners sold the remaining 150 units plus the commercial space to a new group from New York, for $25 Mil. New owners started aggressively marketing the property and seriously dropped the prices. The market was improving, and sales started coming.
Fast forward to 2021. I was tempted to write about the changes at Marina Grande on the Halifax a few times, but was busy, and the changes were taking place too fast.
Anyway, here is a few things:
Marina Grande on the Halifax is the only (I do not know about any other) condo project in the state of Florida with the unsold inventory of units from when the crisis started in 2007. Marina Grande with its magnificent 2 towers housing 486 units was a hard to swallow property for Daytona to absorb in the crisis market. It would have been a huge number for Daytona at any time, but 2007 had way more unsold units than just in Marina Grande on the Halifax.
Many luxury oceanfront new projects were unsold, or partially unsold or had just a few unsold units there. Take Bella Vista, Ocean Vistas, Palma Bella, and a few of others.
We saw the prices being dropped, auctioned… Some projects went into a foreclosure and were sold at the court auction (Islamorada)…
The new bulk purchaser got 150 units in 2018. Right now there are about 30 units remaining, sales are brisk, and in a few months these unit will be gone. Do not expect to buy a condo here for the 2018 price. With sales going into the overdrive, the prices went up and keep going up every week.
I had a couple interested in marina Grande. I sent him 5 good units to consider and begged them to come within a couple of days on weekend (they are both working), explaining that timing was critical. They came in 10 days, and all 5 units were gone. One went under contract an hour and a half before they walked into the sales office. And the prices were up by $10K-$20K. We found another excellent unit for them and tomorrow are closing. But it cost a little more money.
For my other clint, we closed the largest 2-bdroom + den unit, stack 03. It took us 2 months to get the financing, and we finally closed March 31 for $230K. It is less than 2 months after the closing, and I am telling the buyer that if he decides to sell it today, I can get him $100K-$120K net profit after all expenses and commissions are paid. He is laughing, he is not going to sell it, but it is a heck of the gain to make in 2 months, isn’t it?
However, if we are talking about the today’s prices, they are still about 30% less than the market.
What happens next?
Today there are 25 listings in both towers. Yes, there are more units than these 25, but the bulk seller keeps the total number at 27 listings or less. Today – 25 listings.
Let’s say in 6 months there are no more units for sale by bulk purchaser. From that point on there will only be resales.
In Daytona Beach the inventory of condos for sale is 0.7% of the total number of condos in the city proper (5,412). In Daytona Beach Shores (Oceanfront/Ocean view) the inventory is even lower, only 0.5%. So, this is not a fluke. This is the reality of today’s market
It is reasonable to assume that when there are no more units offered by bulk purchaser, the number of units on the resale will be about the same – 0.7%. There are 486 units in 2 towers total, so the expected inventory is going to be between 3 and 4 units. Today there are 25 units on MLS and quite a few not even on MLS, and the prices for a 2-bedroom are already in $300+ range (no more $239K units like 6 months ago). But when there will only be 3-4 units, what do you think the price of a 2-bedroom will be?
The original price list from developer for a 2-bedroom unit in 2007 was from about $450K and up with every floor. In 6 months we may see even higher prices.
If you are interested in Marina Grande on the Halifax I have a word for you:
- You are already a little late.
- You will have to pay more today than a year ago
- You will have to pay way more today than in 2012
- You will still pay way less today than you will have to pay in a year
Yeah, but what about the nice ladies from the title of this post? What they have to do with it? Not much. They are nice ladies, and quite well versed in what they are doing. It is important to understand what they are doing.
Why I even saying it?
I get calls from people, who would tour the property and then start Googling, and find my old-old blogs (and there were many of them). They read and they have questions. And they would like some clarifications.
Now, I have a question for them.
If they toured the property and still have questions, why their nice lady did not bring these issues up?
The answer is simple. They represent the Seller. There are things they must tell you, and they will. There are things that they do not have to tell you. So, they will not tell you.
Can you get the answers? Everything is possible. However, everything is in the context and understanding things in the context is important.
If you work with me, then as a real estate broker, I am your broker and I represent your interests in the transaction.
I know these nice ladies, and have no problem working with any of them. And I am sure you would benefit of having someone in your corner. Usually, you would save some money with me as your broker.
Of course, you can work with them and be not represented. You are not going to die. The worst thing that may happen to you is making not the best deal.
Do you pay extra to have the buyer broker like me in your corner? Nope. And BTW, the nice ladies that take you for a tour and show you units are being compensated.
My next blog post about Marina Grande on the Halifax will probably be after it will become another successful condo project with unit selling for and above market value. Very few of them on the market, and for a lot of money.
Jon Zolsky, condo broker/owner
Daytona Condo Realty, LLC
www.Daytona-Condos.com (and this where you can find and read my blogs)