April 19, 2024

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Miami Beach goes shopping for $6.5 million oceanfront house


Written by on February 20, 2024

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Miami Beach goes shopping for $6.5 million oceanfront house

Miami Beach is to buy a single-family home for $6.5 million. The site at 7605 Collins Ave. is surrounded by city-owned land on three sides and is the missing piece needed to complete a city-owned oceanfront block with no use yet decided.

The city commission discussed its decision to buy the property this month and is act again to finalize the buy.

“We’ll direct the administration to work on the purchase of the property and send the contract and the negotiated agreement to finance so we can identify a funding source as well,” Commissioner Alex J. Fernandez told the meeting, “and then with a recommendation of the finance committee, bring it back to the city commission to finalize the sale and approve the funding source.”

On Oct. 18, the commission heard an item regarding the property, said Eric Carpenter, deputy city manager, “and the direction of the commission to the administration, at the time, was to meet with the property owner, explore the opportunity to purchase the property at its true fair market value, obtain two additional appraisals for the property and report back to the city commission before any action is taken.”

Three city-paid appraisers set values of $4.2 million, $2.1 million and $3.75 million. The homeowner commissioned an a fourth appraisal that valued the property at $7.25 million.

Commissioner Laura Dominguez asked why some elements of the property, including a recording studio, weren’t included in the city’s appraisal.

“I’m not quite sure why they weren’t included,” said Elizabeth Miro, Facilities and Fleet Management interim director. “I think they just looked at the original footprint of the property itself. That’s as far as I know, and they did the appraisal under as-is condition.”

It’s important to include it as square footage, said Commissioner Joseph Magazine. However, the city “may not have a pressing need for a recording studio, so the above-and-beyond modification value may not be included, but it’s important that we’re including her total square footage of the entire home.”

“Ultimately, I don’t know that we know what this property would be used for,” said Mr. Carpenter.  “From our perspective, the value of the property is the missing piece of the puzzle, so to speak, for that entire city block. I don’t know from our perspective, that the recording studio being in, being out is material. These appraisals were really just gotten as a starting point or a measuring stick to work from as we negotiated a potential purchase price.”

By the city buying the property, it is land banking, said Commissioner Tanya K. Bhatt. “We are investing in our collective insurance policy, buying oceanfront property basically to ensure the best possible use of that park area. So, to that end, I would want to make sure that we are getting a fair and accurate appraisal.”

Commissioner Kristen Rosen Gonzalez suggested meeting somewhere between the property owner’s appraisal and the city’s appraisal.

“We’ve sat down and negotiated,” said Mr. Carpenter. “To date, we’ve talked through what the city’s appraisal values say, we’ve talked through… what those different mechanisms that the city could potentially implore to acquire the property. Obviously, we would prefer to go through the willing seller willing buyer approach to acquire the land and ultimately, they have to be willing to sell, and I think what you’re hearing from them is they’re potentially willing to negotiate from the $7.25 [million] evaluation but they’ve not been willing to accept the highest that the administration is willing to go at this time, which is up to the $6 million mark.”

Commissioner David Suarez suggested another appraisal.

“We’ve already done three appraisals as a city, plus the appraisal by the property owner,” said Mr. Carpenter. “We’ve gotten four appraisals.

Obviously, the appraisals are only going to represent… what an across-the-fence purchase without any of the specifics that we’re talking about would entail. That doesn’t really capture the detail of this particular property. If we were looking to buy a single-family home property anywhere in North Beach, I’m sure we could get a much better price than we’re talking about now. But we’re talking about a very specific property that’s bracketed by city-owned land on three sides.”

“That is the last remaining piece to finish this block,” he said. “It’s not imperative that we purchased this property today, I just think that there’s an opportunity that’s being presented to us and we got direction from the commission to explore it. I think … it’s worth a conversation.”

The property owner spoke at the meeting and said she was willing to meet in the middle and sell the property for $6.5 million.

After further discussion, the commission agreed to buy the 7,000-square-foot lot and directed the administration to work on the purchase, send the contracted and negotiated agreement to finance in order to identify a funding source, and bring it back to the commission with a recommendation from the finance committee in order to wrap up the sale and approve the funding source.





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