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[IMGCAP(1)]MARINA DEL REY, CA-The remaining 41 units of a 50-unit condominium project called the Element that went into receivership are slated to be auctioned off Dec. 13 by Los Angeles-based Intellimarket. Dan Lee of Intellimarket tells GlobeSt.com that the units will be auctioned on a retail basis to individual buyers via the Intellimarket simultaneous auction system.

[IMGCAP(2)]Lee says this is the first instance he knows of in Southern California of an asset being taken into receivership and sold at auction. The Element condos, at 4141 Glencoe Ave., were a project of Irvine-based developer John Laing Homes, which closed on nine of the units before Laing filed for bankruptcy early this year, Lee explains. He says that Laing had all 50 units under contract at one time, but was only able to close on nine of the deals before the bankruptcy.

After California Real Estate Receiverships of Newport Beach was appointed receiver for the property, the receiver named the Halifax Group as asset manager to determine the optimum method of disposing of the property, Lee explains. Halifax then determined that retail sales would be the way to go on the condos, versus a wholesale disposition, and Intellimarket got the assignment to auction the units. Intellimarket has partnered with L.A. Realty, a residential brokerage firm, in a 30-day marketing campaign designed to generate interest in the units before the day of the auction, which will be held at the Ritz Carlton at 4375 Admiralty Way in Marina Del Rey.

“Our goal is to sell all of the units in one day,” Lee says. Intellimarket previously auctioned off 41 units at the nearby La Playa Court condominiums in Playa Del Rey this summer. Thirty-Nine of the 41 La Playa Court units sold on the day of the auction and the remaining two within the month following the auction, according to Lee. “Inevitably, with auctions, there are a few deals that fall out of escrow,” Lee says. In the Playa Del Rey auction, for example, a few of the deals that went under contract on the day of the auction fell out of escrow, but they were sold within the month to other buyers.

The Element condos range from 910 to 1,660 square feet and will be auctioned at minimum bids ranging from $295,000 to $550,000, according to the auction web site. The minimum bids represent discounts ranging from 39% to 66% in comparison with previous asking prices that ranged from $546,000 to more than $1.5 million.

On the day before the Element condo auction, Intellimarket is conducting an auction of another condo project, called the Artesia, in Scottsdale, AZ. That project consists of 43 new luxury condominiums and five brownstones, according to the auction web site.

The Intellimarket system is a simultaneous electronic auction, which allows prospective buyers to view the highest bid that has been submitted on each home or condo unit at one time, rather than one at a time as in a conventional sequential auction. The system employs a large screen where all of the properties and the highest current bid for each property are all displayed at one time.

The Intellimarket auctions are among a growing number of auctions in all asset classes and via a variety of formats throughout the US. Marina Del Rey-based AuctionPoint, for example, has created an online auction system that is being used by a number of commercial real estate brokerage firms.

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