Condos still unsold after Solaria auction debacle

It was on Nov.22, 2009 that the developer of Riverdale’s 20-story Solaria sought to unload 54 of the new development’s unsold apartments  at an auction that drew hundreds of hopefuls and plenty of press.

The results were not pretty, and Joseph Korff of ARC Development subsequently tried and tried to get rid of orphaned units that failed to find buyers.  I recently got to wondering whether he has succeeded after so much time.

The answer years later is, Continue reading

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Joe Korff tries another way to sell out the Solaria

After the embarrassing auction of 54 condos of the Riverdale’s Solaria in the Bronx last November, Joe Korff and his ARC Development are trying a tactic they have dubbed “Spring Bid and Buy.”

Huh?  If a double meaning is meant, the grammar is elusive.  And if Korff thinks the idea will work better than simply lowering prices, he’s whistling Dixie.

More than half the building reportedly still is empty.  A total of 35 apartments in the sleek glass tower on Henry Hudson Parkway remain on the market, according to the Riverdale Press.  Only 10 of the development’s 64 units had found buyers prior to the auction.

Poor Mr. Korff seems to think that an inconveniently situated development ought to be priced competitively with other New York City projects.  Continue reading

Shocking news from the Solaria. Kidding.

Anyone who has followed the Solaria saga will hardly be surprised by the email I just received:

So, yes, Joseph Korff continues to peddle his unsold units. Says he:

“We look forward to selling and closing on our remaining homes with the next couple of months.”

I’ll bet!

The hyperbole in the release is a bit hard to take. Continue reading

Developments near the Solaria seem unaffected

Developers of nearby luxury apartments on the market contend that the Solaria situation is not representative of the Riverdale market as a whole, the Riverdale Press reports today.

“People are pointing to the auction and saying the market is in bad shape because of the results of the auction,” said Anne Shahmoon, sales associate at the Shirley Woods. Continue reading

Solaria auction leaves some loose ends and claims

The press release just arrived, two days later than promised, and here it is verbatim (don’t worry, it’s not very long):

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

REDC HOLDS NEW YORK CITY’S FIRST SUCCESSFUL

HIGH-RISE AUCTION FOR SOLARIA CONDOMINIUM

Close to 1,800 Pre-Registered and 550 in Attendance

New York, NY – November 23, 2009 – Real Estate Disposition, LLC (REDC), the nation’s largest real estate auction firm, conducted the first successful NYC luxury high-rise auction for the Solaria condominium on November 22, 2009, with the developer receiving bids and contracts on all homes.

“This auction was an incredible success,” said Robert Friedman, Chairman of REDC. “The buyers of these luxury condominiums got some amazing deals and the developer was able to sell many homes in just a few hours. We already have more than 21 contracts, with over $17 million in proceeds from auction day, and we expect to sell the building out over the next month in our post-auction effort.  We will announce the final sold amount once the program is complete. ” Continue reading

Auction of Riverdale’s Solaria ends with a whimper

Don’t miss today’s update!

Riverdale's Solaria Condominium units go on the auction block.

When the auction started at 1:22 p.m. this was the room.

When the auction ended at 5 p.m. on Sunday at the Sheraton New York Hotel, the remaining hopeful bidders for one of 54 Solaria condos on the block seemed variously dispirited or stubborn despite discounts that averaged 45 percent off the listing prices.

But their mood hardly could have matched that of the condominium’s developer, Joseph Korff of ARC Development, or of the auctioneers, Real Estate Disposition (REDC).  By the anticlimactic close after nearly three and three-quarter hours, even the typically frantic hand gestures and shouts of the auctioneer’s floor personnel had waned to wan facial expressions.

Auction of Solaria condos at New York Sheraton Hotel

This was the scene when the auction ended at 5:00 p.m.

 

Although people connected with REDC put a happy face on the results, noting how rare it was for a building to sell as many as 54 condos in a matter of hours, rather than years, “at prices within 5-10 percent of retail,” everyone on the sell side had to be disappointed.  Here’s why: Continue reading