Investors clamored to Florida in the middle of the last decade, rushing to buy commercial real estate with rapidly rising values. They’re back again, this time to pick up the pieces of a broken market.
Paul Bubny’s story at GlobeSt.com about Spanish developer Espais Promocions Immobiliàries pursuing US expansion mentions an eye toward distress opportunities in South Florida. Barcelona-based Espais established a beachhead in New York City in 2006 by acquiring a successful Manhattan condo project.
“On the Miami side, we’re more focused on doing joint-venture partnerships with local banks,” says Andres Hogg, the New York-based head of US operations for Espais. Banks with vacant land “still believe they can make some of those projects work by bringing a new face to the table. We’re seeing that they’re getting their hands on a lot of projects where they need our help.”
Plenty other foreign investors are looking at Florida again in a different (low) light, though experts say those folks are being very meticulous and aren’t interesting in buying distressed assets based on pricing alone. Some sellers are confident that the international investors will completely make up for the domestic side because the economies wherever they come from are so much better than ours.
The interesting thing about all this is, when worldly investors were looking for opportunities before, they broadened their scope beyond South Florida to the state’s other markets that don’t always get as much global exposure. Wonder if they’ll do it again?