ORLANDO-Condo Developer, LLC, the owner of 165 units at The Vueat Lake Eola, a condominium development in downtown Orlando, whopurchased them at a bankruptcy auction on March 25, has 18 cashreservations from residential users and two unsolicited letters ofintent for the 7900-square-foot retail space at the development.Both prospective buyers for the retail space are interested in thewhole space, says Cristian Michaels, president of Condo Developer,LLC. Sale prices for the residential units average $245 per squarefoot, he says.

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“As soon as we have a formal contract, which should be nextMonday or Tuesday, we will be able to convert our reservations tosales contracts,” says Michaels, who is also the broker at RE/MaxTown Centre in Orlando who is selling the units, which werepurchased for a total of $25.9 Million. The name of the developeron the contract will be changed to Condo Developer, LLC, he says,to reflect the new ownership. The bulk sale of the 165 units closedon May 17th.

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The 375-unit The Vue at Lake Eola was completed in 2007 byChicago-based Westminster Partners, LLC, led by Chuck Johanns. MikeMurray of the Churchhill Development Group, based in Orlando, wasalso on the development team, but was bought out a year or so ago,says Michaels.

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The original developers closed on 210 units before they ran intoproblems, says Jay Ballard, senior director, apartment brokerageservices at Cushman & Wakefield in Orlando, who was the brokerfor the seller of the 165 units, then known as the debtor inpossession, which was Westminster Capital.

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The banks provided debtor in possession financing, which allowedthe developer of The Vue to continue operating until the bankruptcysale, says Ballard. But the financing, also known as bridgefinancing, added to the total indebtedness, he says.

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The original developers of The Vue sold the units for between$275 and $350 per square foot, says Ballard. At the recent bulksale, the average price per unit was $126 per square foot or$157,000 per unit, he says. These figures take into account the7900-square foot retail portion of the development which has about$500,000 in value, says Ballard. All of the units are finishedexcept for window treatments, he says.

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There were eight lenders on the Vue mortgage, starting with leadlender Key Bank, and they put a floor unit prices, says Ballard,which prevented the developer from selling more units. “It ischallenging to have eight lenders,” he says.

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