As we reported last month, 27 of the 44 long-vacant units remaining in the Sabine are finally headed to auction on February 28th. The auction is a last hope for the project which is currently facing foreclosure.
According to the Austin Business Journal, “Beverly Hills-based auctioneer Kennedy Wilson will sell-off 27 of the available 44 units Feb. 28, taking bids as low as $85,000 and $195,000. The apartments were previously listed near $204,900 and $550,000. Condo buyers would receive a one-year Tower Health Club and Spa membership and up to $1,500 in closing costs paid by the seller.”
Kennedy Wilson has handled many condo auctions in the last year, including the successful Brazos Place auction in Austin. The auction will be held in February 28th at 1 p.m. at the downtown Hilton. According to the auction firm, potential buyers must register by Feb. 25. The company has set up a Web site specifically for auction information here.
It’s always hard to predict what will happen in an Auction like this. In the Brazos Place auction, held during tougher times, all 19 remaining units were sold in less than 90 minutes to a packed room of bidders. In that case, the units sold at a 29% discount to the original listing price. This is, however, is a useless barometer as the units were not selling well at the original prices. More useful is the average price / square foot which at $281/SF is a 9% discount to the 2008 downtown condo average of $308. Unfortunately for the original Brazos Place residents, the units sold for 24% less on a $/SF basis than the $370/SF average of the 12 Brazos Place units sold via MLS in 2008. We’ll see what will happen with the Sabine, but discounts of 20 – 35% off original prices are likely.
The Sabine is an 80-unit condo conversion project of a mostly-empty office building on Waller Creek into a new condo project adjoining the Hilton Garden Inn on 5th Street near I-35. The project was completed in 2007 and the majority of units still remain vacant although they have been removed from the market due to pending litigation. Unit plans range from one-bedroom, 682-square-foot units to two-bedrooms with as large as 1,419 square feet.
Get the full details on the auction here.