Monday, April 27, 2009
MGM Auction Sets New Low Comps for Signature Towers
I recently attended the public auction held to sell 20 units in the three MGM Signature towers located just off the Las Vegas strip. The auction was held on April 21st and was attended by about 125 people. All units were sold.
MGM has been forced to clamor for capital since its flagship project, the record setting City Center development in Las Vegas, ran into funding difficulties and innumerable construction setbacks and delays. MGM's major financial partner in the deal, Dubai World, announced that they would not honor their obligations to the project. This announcement brought the already struggling MGM Mirage corporation to the edge of Chapter 11 bankruptcy filings as they struggled to find alternative financing. MGM Mirage has financial covenants due to expire on April 29th and May 15th. There has been speculation that they may need to sell off some major assets, such as the Beau Rivage in Mississippi or the MGM Grand Detroit. Just recently, however, investor Carl Icahn and private equity fund Oaktree Capital Management have stepped up and acquired hundreds of millions of MGM Mirage bonds. Should this deal go through it might save MGM Mirage from having to sell further assets in order to stay afloat.
In the meantime, MGM's loss was investors gain in the Las Vegas condo market. The auction saw new record low sales prices for both one bedroom and studio units in the MGM Signature complex. The top one bedroom sold for $255K and the low sold for $185K. The previous low comp for a one bedroom unit was $274K. So this sale brought the comp down quite a bit from $274K to $185K. The top studio unit sold for $200K and the low sold for $142K. The previous low comp was $174K. So again the comp came down from $174K to a new low of $142K.
It will take approximately one month for these units to officially close and for the new lower comps to register in the MLS. There are still 24 REO/bank owned units available within the Signature towers. Once the new comps register, there will be another great buying opportunity for anyone still interested. I will then be advising my investors to put in some cash offers for lower than the new low comp prices and test the waters.
This MGM auction, and others that are coming up shortly at different locations, are proving that high rise prices in Las Vegas are finally coming down to levels where they are extremely affordable as a second/vacation home option and even as an investment. If you have any interest in the MGM Signature condos or other high rise properties please feel free to give me a call to discuss your options.