In mid-June, another vulture fund laid out plans to move into Florida and devour excess condos and land for a third of the price they once went for. This time, it was London-based Strategic Real Estate Advisors (StratReal), which plans to offer $400 per square foot for foreclosed or bank-seized homes in Miami, according to Bloomberg. StratReal did not return calls from MULTIFAMILY EXECUTIVE.
It may be in the spotlight, but StratReal isn't the only international group interested in Florida real estate, says Jack McCabe, CEO of Deerfield Beach, Fla.-based Mc-Cabe Research & Consulting, a real estate research firm. He's gotten calls from many international firms, including First Fidelity Capital in Denmark. In contrast, more than 80 domestic companies, many of them hedge funds, have also contacted McCabe. Marc deBaptiste, a principal in the Boca Raton, Fla., office of Apartment Realty Advisors, sees this as well. “There are a lot of groups that have put together funds that are structured for special assets,” he says. “They are looking for busted condo deals.”
But McCabe thinks that in many cases these vultures, who seem to prefer tourist spots such as Florida and New York City, have an advantage. For one, there's the favorable exchange rate. “If things go down 30 percent [after they buy the asset], they break even” McCabe says. [Domestic investors] have lost their rear end.”