Yet another condo building will go up for auction. Although in this case, it's not a brand new building, but the El Dorado on Spring Street, a nearly-finished condo conversion of a beautiful 1913 building. Yes, now early 1900s buildings are lumbering up to the auction block. Welcome to the auction process, old friend! The auction will be held on April 25th on the site of the property, according to Downtown Properties developer Bill Stevenson. Stevenson's Intellimarket auction service--the same firm that ran the Rowan and Element auctions--will run this one, which'll see 47 out of 65 units available to buyers.
A sampling of starting bid prices: An 850-square foot one-bedroom will start at $245,000; a 1,190 square foot one-bedroom, two bath will start at $335,000; a two-bedroom, 1,400 square foot unit will start at $395,000. The most expensive unit, a 1,700 square foot three-bedroom with a private roofdeck will have a starting bid of $595,000.
Meanwhile, a major reason for holding the auction in April is so buyers can take advantage of the $8,000 first-time homebuyer tax credit program, according to Stevenson. To qualify for the tax credit, buyers must be under contract to purchase a new residence by April 30th, 2010. While the tax credit has been extended in the past, it's not certain whether it'll be extended again.
And it's worth pointing out that both Mereulo Maddux and Milbank are pushing to hold auctions at their in-Chapter 11 downtown buildings---705 W. Ninth and Roosevelt, respectively-- but legals battles are causing delays for both developers. We asked Stevenson about those buildings, thinking he woudn’t want competing auctions to be held at the same time. Turns out we were wrong!
Because it's a new building, 705 W. Ninth buyer is likely a different buyer than the El Dorado purchaser, according to Stevenson, who added that multiple downtown auctions work to drive more interest to an area. “I would like to see the Roosevelt go to auction at the same time. Our presentation and product is better, but a [Roosevelt auction] would increase advertising and the interest in downtown.”
· Waiting for the El Dorado [Curbed LA]