Keller Williams Greater Seattle

Single property auction hits Seattle

By on February 19, 2009 in Ballard Condos, Condo News, Real Estate with 3 Comments

UPDATE 3/4/09: The single owner / single property auctions appear to have busted with lack of interest. There were no registered bidders for either auction; the Tribeca auction is scheduled for tomorrow is being canceled. Single property auctions may work in cases where there is a value incentive, a low minimum starting/reserve price relative to the list/market price. In these two cases, the minimum bid was approximately 10% below the list.

Post revised 2/24/09:

For most of us in Seattle non-foreclosure auctions have been a rarity. However, the current market place has sellers looking at real estate auctions as an alternative means to sell their property. In the past six months two Seattle condominium projects (The Press & Seventeen07) utilized a public auction to sell off their remaining units. Both the sellers and buyers benefited — the sellers sold off their inventory (public records show most closed) and buyers were able to purchase well-below list.

It worked so well for condo projects that now individual unit owners are giving it a try. I received information on auctions at Ballard’s Canal Station and the Tribeca in Lower Queen Anne. The auctions are held by individual sellers and are being facilitated by the CE Group.

Canal Station #304 is an fairly large 873 square foot 1-bedroom. This single property auction is scheduled for Tuesday, March 3rd at 5:30 p.m.. The minimum bid starts at $279,000.

Tribeca #201 is a 1,116 square foot 2-bedroom, 2-bath unit with a large deck and 2 parking spaces. The condo is presently listed at $538,950 with an auction starting price of $465,000. The Tribeca auction is scheduled for Thursday, March 5th at 5:30 PM.

The location for both auctions are still to be determined. More detailed information about the auctions can be found at CE Group Auctions. The process is similar to the last two project auctions.

Canal station auction

Tribeca condo auction

I don’t know if single property / individual owner auctions will take off in the Seattle area, but if they do, there are some advantages to them. For sellers – the potential to sell the property quickly and eliminate carrying costs, reduce the hassle of on-going showings & open houses, remove sellers from the negotiating process and sell the property at market value. For buyers – the price is set by the buyer and eliminates negotiations, know they are competing on same terms with other buyers, have the ability to review documentation beforehand and reduces the closing time frame.

Disclaimer: CE Group and TSCB are independent entities affiliated with John L. Scott Seattle Center. TSCB has no vested interest in this auction.

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About the Author

About the Author: Ben Kakimoto is a condo marketing specialist and publisher of The Seattle Condo Blog. Ben's focus is urban residential properties in Seattle's metropolitan core. Contact Ben to learn more about the Seattle condo and loft real estate market. Find Ben on Google+, Twitter and Facebook. .


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There Are 3 Brilliant Comments

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  1. Ed McMahon says:

    Great Marketing idea and Bravo for getting the press interested in this shocking new trend of auctions in real estate! ‘Buy now’ pricing indeed!

    Wait, where have I heard that term? Oh yeah, on E Bay.

    In this case it’s essentially the list price, but it sure sounds better when you call it ‘buy now’ pricing. The comparables that are listed are also very interesting, but they don’t list the dates of the sales.

    IMO, every home on the market is up for auction. It’s called negotiating and not much has changed in that arena in many years. Get saavy on the market by looking at the competing properties and make a reasonable offer without the hype of a so called auction.

    Good press for John L Scott though. er I mean their ‘affiliate companies’. Have to hand it to them for being clever enough to get me to comment…..

  2. Jerry says:

    Allegdly at this particular building, and perhaps many others, some residents who are behind their house dues are experiencing a “mob style” take over of their units from the management company running the building.

    Even for a small amount of past due house dues, the management company represening Tribeca serves the residents with a law suit for the amount due, add an absurd amount of legal fees to be paid by the residents and take them to court so they could, hopefuly, find a judge that could agree with them and issue a junction against the residents and take over the unit. The residents are still responsible for the mortgage payments and legal fees even though they no longer have the tile for the property.

    It is amazing that the condo board goes along with it unless, of course, some board members benefit from this shameful take over.

    It looks to me like an arrogant abuse of power from the condo board as well as the management company. Some residents who are victims of this scam have retained legal representation and are fighting back.

    Be aware!!

  3. Ben Kakimoto says:

    Jerry, unfortunately it is not uncommon. It can be difficult for those who find themselves behind. I’ve known situations where an HOA has taken over someone’s unit.

    The flip side, particularly in this economy and market, delinquencies can have an adverse affect on the health of the association’s budget, the ability for owners to sell (lenders unwilling to loan due to Fannie/Freddie and FHA’s HOA delinquency guidelines), which can then lead to more short sales/foreclosures and ultimately reduce values throughout the development.

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