Thursday, February 6, 2014

FrontDoor Communities Celebrates Model Home Grand Opening at Reunion Resort in Orlando, FL

Reunion Resort, Orlando, FL

Mike Taylor

 ATLANTA, GA – FrontDoor Communities recently hosted a grand opening event to celebrate the opening of its model home in Reunion Resort, a 2,300-acre destination in Orlando, Fla., located just 10 minutes from the Disney World theme park. Reunion’s unique layout of multi-bedroom villas and homes allows homeowners to experience resort-style living year-round. 

Priced from the mid $500,000s, the homes provide access to three golf courses designed by legendary golfers Arnold Palmer, Tom Watson and Jack Nicklaus; a full-service spa; on-site restaurants and a water park. Floor plans range from 3,751 square feet to 4,028 square feet.

The community has become an instant hit among homebuyers looking to take advantage of its ideal location. Within just a day of the model grand opening, FrontDoor signed a contract on the home, its 11th new home sale in the resort.

“There was considerable anticipation leading up to the model home grand opening event, and we’re thrilled with the response from visitors who especially liked the home’s contemporary design, convenient location and upscale amenities,” said Mike Taylor, division vice president at FrontDoor Communities. “Immediately signing a new contract shows how in demand this type of resort-style living is in the Florida market.”

Reunion is FrontDoor’s second community in Florida. The firm is also building homes in the award-winning Andalucia gated community in Naples, Fla.

Terry Russell
“Building at Reunion Resort fits in with our commitment to deliver better homes through quality design,” said Terry Russell, chief executive officer of FrontDoor Communities. “We will continue to seek out ideal locations for new communities in the region.”

The grand opening is just one example of a string of recent successes for FrontDoor. 

The firm is quickly expanding and building homes throughout the Southeast. In 2013, FrontDoor doubled its staff and sold 68 homes, resulting in nearly $30 million in home sales revenue.

For a complete copy of the company’s news release, please contact:

M.C. Rhodes •The Wilbert Group
1720 Peachtree St., Suite 350 • Atlanta, Ga. 30309
O: 404-343-0274  • M: 678-983-5867

Michael Phillips                                                                                                                     

HFF arranges $5.1 million financing for retail center in Secaucus, NJ

Mill Creek Annex, 200 Mill Creek Drive
at the Route 3 West/New Jersey Turnpike interchange, Secaucus, NJ

Jim Cadranell
FLORHAM PARK, NJ – HFF announced today that it has arranged $5.1 million in acquisition financing for the Mill Creek Annex, a 25,108-square-foot retail center in Secaucus, New Jersey.

HFF worked exclusively on behalf of the borrower to secure the seven-year, fixed-rate loan through Investors Bank. 

The center is part of the Harmon Meadow development, a 200-acre master-planned development just west of Manhattan that consists of four million square feet of retail, office, hotel, entertainment and convention space in New Jersey’s Meadowlands submarket. 

Originally developed by Hartz Mountain in 1983, the center is 94 percent leased to tenants such as Bonefish Grill, Verizon Wireless, Panera Bread and Subway. 

The property is located at 200 Mill Creek Drive at the Route 3 West/New Jersey Turnpike interchange and features direct commuter bus service to and from Manhattan, as well as shuttle service to the Secaucus Junction train station.

Jon Mikula
The HFF team representing the borrower was led by managing director Jim Cadranell, senior managing director Jon Mikula and associate director Samuel Seiden.

Investors Bank is a full-service community bank that has been serving customers since 1926.  With more than $15.6 billion in assets and a network of over 125 branches across New Jersey and New York, the bank serves a wide range of consumer, business, commercial real estate, nonprofit and local government customers.

For a complete copy of the company’s news release, please contact:

Kristen M. Murphy
Associate Director
HFF | One Post Office Square, Suite 3500 | Boston, MA 02109
Main: 617-338-0990 | Direct: 617-848-1572 | Cell: 617-543-4873 |

Many markets in hipster hot spots offer big average gross profits.

Daren Blomquist
By Daren Blomquist, RealtyTrac Vice President

Hipsters have been accused of holding back a more robust housing recovery because of their low homeownership rates and lackluster household formation.

Certainly there is data to back this up: the U.S. Census bureau shows homeownership rates for hipsters (our term, not theirs) — comprised of those aged 25 to 34 — was at 41 percent in 2012. 

That is well off the average hipster homeownership rate of 46 percent from 1982 to present, and it’s certainly below the high of more than 49 percent in 2004.

The hipster homeownership rate has been below the long-term average since 2009, and the deficit in hipster homeowners because of that below-average period stands at approximately 2 million.

Gordon Miles
Why are hipsters not becoming homeowners? In part because many are living with their parents longer rather than forming their own households, according to analyses of Census bureau data by PewResearchCenter focusing on Millennials — a demographic heavy with hipsters.

But while others may like to look at the glass as half empty, opportunistic real estate investors might very well see the glass as half full.

 As the Great Recession fades further into the rearview mirror, these hipsters will likely gain the confidence — and the jobs — to buy a home of their own.

“The overcorrection of the Las Vegas housing market and the ability to find a lightly distressed property are a couple of the main factors that make flipping a home in Las Vegas profitable,” said Gordon Miles, president, COO of Prudential Americana Group, covering the Las Vegas market. 

“Las Vegas zip codes 89169 and 89119 are older zip codes that were hit hard during the foreclosure crisis, offering buyers great opportunities to flip in this area.  Add in the close proximity to the Las Vegas Strip and UNLV, and it becomes a prime area for flipping to the hipster demographic.   The community surrounding the university has all started to change with the addition of new restaurants and hip shops, and we’re noticing the areas that were once old are becoming new again.”
Charlie Bengel Jr.
“Another great side to flipping in these zip codes is Las Vegas is experiencing excellent rental returns so if you buy a property, flip it and end up holding on to it as a rental property, you’ll still see profit,” he added.

 See RealtyTrac report on best markets for renting to hipsters from November. Yes, we may be a bit hipster obsessed.

The low hipster homeownership rate of the past five years translates into a market of potentially millions of first-time homebuyers looking to find a home that matches their budget and fits into their hipster lifestyle. 

Real estate investors who want to tap into that trend should start with location: finding homes in communities with a heavy hipster demographic, and that are affordable for that demographic.

"We continue to see low housing inventory in the D.C. metropolitan area, making homes that have been flipped more attractive to potential home buyers,” said Charlie Bengel, Jr., CEO of RE/MAX Allegiance, covering the Virginia, Maryland and D.C. areas. “By purchasing a flipped home, they are able to get into a home that feels new while still being in an established neighborhood."

But ultimately a successful hipster flipping strategy ends with the bottom line profit potential in each market. U.S. single family homes flipped in 2013 provided an average gross profit of more than $58,000, up from $45,000 in 2012, according to RealtyTrac’s 2013 year-end flipping report.

Many markets in hipster hot spots offer even bigger average gross profits.

For a complete copy of the company’s news release, please contact:

Jennifer von Pohlmann
PR Manager
Office: 949.502.8300 ext 139

Trepp’s January Loss Analysis: Volume Steady, Severity Jumps

NEW YORK, NY – Trepp reports CMBS liquidation volume remained steady in January, but several large losses pushed the average loss severity up significantly.

Liquidation volume registered $1.28 billion in January, equal to December's volume and slightly above the 12-month moving average of $1.19 billion. Of the loans that were liquidated, 94% fell into the greater than 2% loss severity category.

January loss severity came in at 58.51%, up from December's 50.36% and more than 10 percentage points higher than the 12-month moving average of 46.82%. The number of loans liquidated in January was 79, resulting in $746.85 million in losses. The average disposed balance in January was $16.16 million--well above the 12-month average of $12.56 million.

Since January 2010, servicers have been liquidating at an average rate of $1.18 billion per month.

Below are the overall statistics for loans liquidated from January 2010 to January 2014. The first table includes only US fixed-rate conduit loans. (If a loan somehow managed to be liquidated with a profit or at par, we excluded the loan. If the loan suffered a loss of $1 or more, it is included in the chart numbers above.

For a complete copy of the company’s news release, please contact:


Berger Commercial Closes Leases Totaling More Than 25,000 Square Feet of Warehouse and Office Space in Broward County, FL

Keith Graves
FORT LAUDERDALE, FL (Feb. 6, 2014) - Berger Commercial Realty brokers Keith Graves, St. George Guardabassi and Greg Milopoulos recently handled two new leases for warehouse and office space in Broward County.

 Guardabassi represented the Africa Adventure Group in leasing 7,100 square feet of Class-A office space in the Broward Bank building, located at 2601 East Oakland Park in Fort Lauderdale, from Berman Enterprises.

 Graves and Milopoulos represented Prologis in leasing 18,464 square feet of warehouse space at 7060 W. State Road 84 in Davie to Angstrom Graphics Midwest, Inc.

St. George Guardabassi
Prologis, the leading owner, operator and developer of industrial real estate in regional markets worldwide, awarded Berger Commercial Realty the exclusive leasing assignment for its  I-595 Distribution Center in April.

 The two-building, modern-style industrial facility features prime office-distribution space with convenient access to tri-county market. Features include 22+/- foot clear height ceilings, a combination of docks and loading ramps, and three-phase power.

 For more information about brokerage services, include tenant and landlord representation, contact Berger Commercial Realty at 954-358-0900.

For a complete copy of the company’s news release, please contact:

Marielle Sologuren
(954) 776-1999, ext. 226

CHM Named Hotel Asset Manager of Hyatt Regency and Marriott Marquis at McCormick Place in Chicago, IL

Hyatt Regency at McCormick Place, 2233 South Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, Chicago, IL

Richard Oldshue
BEVERLY, MA, Feb. 6, 2014—Capital Hotel Management (CHM), a leading hotel asset management and investment advisory firm, today announced that it was awarded the asset management contract for both the Hyatt Regency and planned Marriott Marquis at McCormick Place on behalf of the Metropolitan Pier & Exposition Authority (MPEA).

 “CHM is a proven asset management firm that has produced excellent results for its convention center hotels,” said Richard Oldshue, chief financial officer for the MPEA.  “These two hotels are part of a massive redevelopment project around the convention center, and we believe CHM is an excellent choice to represent the Authority’s interests as the area continues to evolve.”

CHM will provide asset management/operational oversight services for the existing 1,262-room Hyatt Regency McCormick Place, as well as pre-opening advisory and eventual asset management of the planned 1,200-room Marriott Marquis. 

Located adjacent to McCormick Place®, North America’s premier convention facility, both hotels are owned by the MPEA and are operated by Hyatt and Marriott, respectively. 

Situated at 2233 South Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place recently completed a $110 million expansion and renovation to deliver 1,262 new and like-new guest rooms to the thriving Chicago convention market. 

Chad Crandell
“We are particularly gratified  to be chosen by the MPEA as we were the original asset managers of the Hyatt  Regency McCormick Place when the property first opened in 1998, continuing in that role for the following decade,” noted Chad Crandell, president of CHM. 

“We will build upon that base to help the Authority as they enter this new phase of expansion and with the many intricacies of owning now two major convention center hotels. 

“CHM has become the advisor of choice for numerous publically-funded projects, including the pre-opening, operational ramp up and asset management of properties such as the 1,100-room Hyatt Regency Denver at the Colorado Convention Center and the 750-room Hilton Baltimore Convention Center Hotel, among others. “We are confident this level of expertise will translate into immediate strategies that can be employed at both properties.” Crandell added. 

For more information on CHM, visit their website at or contact them at (978) 522-7002.

For a complete copy of the company’s news release, please contact:

 Chris Daly
(703) 435-6293                 


Cindy Schooler Joins C&W's Retail Leasing Team in Orlando, FL

Cindy Schooler
ORLANDO, FL -- Cushman & Wakefield is pleased to announce that Cindy Schooler has joined the firm’s Orlando, Florida branch as Director of Retail Services.

Ms. Schooler brings an impressive track record of leasing successes to a local roster that already includes the retail Capital Markets team of Senior Director Ray Hayhurst and Associate Director Steve Tanner.

“We are very pleased to have Cindy join our Orlando office,” said Larry Richey, Cushman & Wakefield’s Senior Managing Director and Market Leader for Central and North Florida. “Her reputation and experience in the Orlando retail community will help us to better serve our clients in this important property sector.”

Prior to joining Cushman & Wakefield, Ms. Schooler was owner of and Managing Broker at Cynco Properties where she specialized in retail and office tenant representation.

There, she established an impressive national and regional client list which included Restaurant Partners Inc, 4 Rivers Smokehouse, Stoningtons Shrimp Co, National Airlines Corporation, Integrative Medicine Systems, SCI Companies and Old Town Amusement Center.

Larry Richey
"I am excited about the opportunity to position Cushman & Wakefield's Orlando retail brokerage services as a leader in the community,” said Ms. Schooler. “And I look forward to providing my current and future clients with resources, relationships and a dynamic national platform for market placement."

Ms. Schooler is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the state of Florida and holds membership in the Commercial Real Estate Women’s organization (CREW) and the Orlando Regional Real Estate Association (ORRA).

She is also involved in a number of community boards and associations including the Central Florida Women’s League, Coalition for the Homeless Women’s Center and Business Networking Institute.

Ms. Schooler majored in Business Management at Indiana University/Purdue University Indianapolis and has held marketing and operations management positions with Mercer University, Saxon Publishing and the National Training Center in Clermont

For a complete copy of the company’s news release, please contact:

David Meyer