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JERSEY CITY-An unnamed national bank has tapped Eastern Consolidated’s senior directors Ety Lee and David Schechtman to exclusively represent the bank in the sale of two defaulted commercial mortgages secured by properties at 333 Fairmount Ave. here and 75 First Ave. in Manhattan. The unpaid balances are approximately $4.1 million and $7.5 million, respectively.

The art deco 333 Fairmount is a five-story elevator-serviced multifamily building with a total of 53 units, several of which have been sold as condominiums. Across the Hudson, 75 First Ave. is a vacant, 2,400-square-foot lot located on the west side of First Avenue between East 4th and 5th Streets, which is merged with an adjacent 21,630-square-foot lot, enabling as-of-right zoning for a total buildable project of approximately 31,230 square feet of residential space.

According to Lee, the Fairmount site is an architecturally distinct building with high ceilings, for which the firm expects a great amount of interest. Meanwhile, at around 31,000 square feet, the First Avenue development site “is precisely the size deal which can be accomplished even in a down market,” Schechtman tells GlobeSt.com.

As for potential First Avenue buyers, “local operators are always best positioned, but we have considerable interest from scores of people who have been trying to break into the Manhattan development market on any scale can and can now purchase a loan and take back a property at a very attractive price–by any market standard,” Schechtman says, adding that 333 Fairmont is a good fit for a user interested in eventually owning a group of units.

“Investors will generally only make cash purchases when they can expect almost instant gratification in the form of returns,” Schechtman relates. “People aren’t going to spend tens of millions for a hole in the ground unless they get it for such an attractive price that they are willing to experience delayed gratification.”

The past three years saw only the highest bidders able to purchase raw land in Manhattan and many savvy investors stayed out of the fray, Schechtman continues. “While we’re offering a first mortgage on the development site, because of the conservative price the bank lent most potential buyers can pay all-cash and then build all cash.”

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