Marina Landing Auction – CANCELED

by June 26, 2008 • 15 comments

After selling two 3 bedroom and two 2 bedroom condos, the Marina Landing auction was canceled.

The anticipated selling prices were surely higher than what the market was commanding right now.

The place was packed – over 500 people were crowded outside in various locations on a balcony and downstairs around the auctioneer. The event was outside, so everyone was sweating in the 90+ degree heat and fighting for a spot in the shade. All of the seats were taken and people were standing wherever they could hear and be seen. The parking lot was so full that parking was bleeding into the Woodlawn subdivision. People were hiking across the field.

Check after the break for the SOLD prices.

Originally the auction was supposed to include 25 condos selling absolute. Anticipated selling prices for the three bedrooms ranged from $500,000 to $600,000.

Before the auction started, three 3 bedroom condos and two 2 bedroom condos were sold – $558k, $530k, $523k, $430k, $430k, respectively.

Ok, enough suspense, here are the sold prices for the condos that sold on auction:

The first condo up was a 3 bedroom and they started the price at $600k and quickly got down to $300k with the first bid. They slowly worked their way up to $450k and stayed there for a while (seriously, like 7 minutes). After no bidders at $460k the auctioneer yelled “SOLD” at $450,000 – $234 sqft.

The second condo that was up was a 2 bedroom, it sold for $325k – again, $234 sqft.

After the first two sold, the auctioneer announced that they had to take a break. The guy next to me said they’ll cancel it for sure.

When they came back from the break, the auctioneer stated that they have one more 3 bedroom and one more 2 bedroom to try and if they can’t get better numbers, they’ll cancel the auction.

Well, the numbers did NOT improve.

The next three bedroom sold for $390,000 – $204 sqft. The last 2 bedroom sold for $330k, $5k more than the first one.

I’m sure the developer is quite disappointed, only time will tell what is next with the unsold condos at Marina Landing.

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1 ryan June 26, 2008 at 5:52 pm

Not good for the condo market. Maybe the demand was low because of the location? Wonder what a beachfront condo would get at auction.

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2 JAKE June 26, 2008 at 8:32 pm

I have commented on this before with other condo/housing related topics on this site, but I am sure no one associated with the auction/developer bothered to get an appraisal on any of the units, and I don’t mean one of the inflated appraisals done for the units when they originally sold. Many people do not understand or are not aware that many of the appraisals completed on the initial sales used the cash sales in the building (which most likely did not require or need an appraisal) and totally ignored sales that had adequate market exposure. Had they bothered to invest a less than $400 – they could have had a realistic idea of what the market would pay for one of the units. This would have saved everyone’s time and efforts. Condos at Hibiscus By the Bay (the development just north of Marina Landing) are not selling for that price and many of them have private garages and boat slips deeded with the units where as Marina Landing will not sell you a boat slip, you must rent it based on the size of the boat slip. People need to stop thinking that property will sell for what they want it to, and realize that there is a basic economic principle called substitution. If you can get something of equal utility for less money, no one (especially in this market) will pay more. When will developers in the panhandle realize this?

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3 Tony Spanke June 27, 2008 at 4:11 pm

Jason, thank you for providing this detailed posting. I am an out-of-state condo owner, and though I do not like to see these low prices, I’d rather know than be ignorant of what is happening in the real estate market. I read your postings everyday and I think your website is excellent.

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4 Girard July 1, 2008 at 9:03 am

Where is the accountability for the auctioneers? “Absolute” , sold onsite, to the highest bidder…how many times can this be said without the seller honoring those words? We were promised 25 and got a fraction of that.

There is no credibility in the auction process and its not fair for legitimate sellers. There were over 500 people at the auction that could have been looking at real properties with real sellers.

The Florida Legislature needs to enact tough regulations on this industry. Why don’t we hear more about this in the local papers.

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5 Hugh July 1, 2008 at 10:21 am

The Auction market is a scam. The Auction Company should have a contract with the Seller that precludes the removal of units after the sale starts. Everyone looses crediability.

This should at least be false advertising and the Real Estate Board should step in and stop this practice. A simple mandate of Loose Your License if this happens again, will stop this practice.

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6 John July 1, 2008 at 10:54 am

Wake up folks, the sellers market is over….

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7 Don July 1, 2008 at 12:41 pm

I was there. This was my first experience with an Absolute Auction. My friend was there with me. He bought a three bedroom unit for close to $800,000. He thought he was getting a great deal. Now he does not think he was so smart after all. But he did get his fill from the free bar at the auction. I was amazed that so many showed up. Guess they had the same concept of absolute that I did. Or, maybe it was the free food…that went quickly. But, there were no bidders stepping up to buy when the first units were offered. It is a sad thing to watch an auctioner talking to himself. This leads me to believe that everyone there was just wanting to see if there were going to be any REAL BUYERS show up and actually buy something. This is the problem with our market. There are people with money that would normally be buying, but every day they turn on the TV and another so called expert tells them that they should wait until next year to get back into real estate. So how are we who depend on the worlds most beautiful beaches for our livelyhood going to survive until next year. Guess it is not at Absolute Auction…..

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8 Dan July 1, 2008 at 2:22 pm

Fact no beach. What is a value of a condo not on the beach? People have options now and people come to PCB for the beach.

Like it or not to me this was a fair price for a condo not on the beach.

Laketown is next.

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9 Mike July 1, 2008 at 2:50 pm

I am not surprised at the pricing for a Bay Front that has never been promoted properly. To me a bay front condo with boat access is like a house on the golf course. It is for boaters not beach people. It is two completely different buyers. As much gulf front as we have…… it will be some time before the bay becomes valuable unless all of the surrounding areas get together and start to promote the benefits of bay living and developing.

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10 Joe July 1, 2008 at 4:00 pm

Maybe the Hells Angels will buy them up.

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11 Robert Olson July 1, 2008 at 4:51 pm

we have many auctions on east coast and ocean area that tell you starting bid! http://WWW.4LESSMLS.COM
SO YOU KNOW THE STARTING BIDS.

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12 Charles July 7, 2008 at 11:36 pm

As for the “Absolute Auction”? I handled marketing for one of the most reputable high end real estate auction firms in the U.S. In my opinion there is indeed legal remedy against any seller or any auction group that advertises “25 units selling absolute regardless of price” who then cancels the auction because of price.

There have always been a handful of auction companies who “appear” to work with sellers to “find a way out of a dissappointing auction”. And if you look at those particular firms you will find a long list of past and pending lawsuits against them.

If you look at the more reputable auction companies you will find few disputes and even fewer disputes reaching the level of lawsuits. A reputable firm will prepare the sellers with realistic expectations prior to marketing and the firms will provide the sellers with realistic feedback from potential buyers during the marketing and site visits prior to sell. At that point there should be NO surprises in what values those units bring.

The Auction can be an excellent vehicle for developers and private owners when the firm is reputable and when the firm helps educate the seller on “realisitic expectations” prior to marketing and prior to sell date.

Unfortunately there are several less reputable auction companies who look great in presentations and have a true knack for telling sellers what they want to hear. That combination never ends well for anyone.

An auction works best in a hot market when you have multiple prospects bidding on the same property.

In a painful market, an auction can also be an excellent way to reach a target market quick, and get the top going market dollar for that specific time. If you are a motivated seller in this market then yes indeed the auction method could be an answer.

In a painful market, in my opinion, a seller should never expect to outperform the existing market. The seller can expect to find an immediate buyer quickly at the top dollar for that day with an auction…. but nothing beyond that.

I was not present for this auction and I do not know which auction firm represented the seller. I suspect I could guess if the writers here are giving honest views of what occured. I am always suspicious when I see the bulk of auction day money being spent on an open bar (and I do love an open bar myself LOL), but if I am selling or buying anything with six figures and a dollar sign then I do not want my seller or buyer consuming drinks. That is just setting up one more way for closing to fall apart due to a very real legal excuse.

Just my opinions from reading your comments on this particular auction. Again, I will add my disclaimer that: this is just my personal opinion based on my readings here and I was not present for this auction.

Charles

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13 c.broke September 9, 2008 at 11:45 am

do you know of any body winng a lawsuit against a developer,
and getting there dep. back.

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14 John October 15, 2008 at 6:17 pm

Auction at $204- 234/sf in June?

Well hey, I just got a post card
offering me a condo here for ONLY $261/sf

What a deal !

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