(Note: This post is partially based on information that was kindly sent in by a reader. The Tattler is dedicated to printing important information as it arrives. We feel that it is our mission to keep the people of Sierra Madre as informed as possible about important events. Because if we don't do it, what other news venue will?)
Public auction is now set for December 19 for both the One Carter & Stonehouse properties. The opening bid is set at $51 million dollars, or best offer. These properties are to be sold by CapitalSource (that's how they spell it) Finance Bank of Maryland, with temporary oversight (receivership) being handled by the Douglas Wilson Co. out of San Diego. The Douglas Wilson Co. has been feng shui-ing the infrastructure work being seen as of late, with Laing Luxury Homes supervisory personnel orchestrating all the artistic mud pushing. Obviously with the purpose of making this calamity specific development project look as good as possible for the marks at Friday's auction in Pomona.
Talk about putting lipstick on a pig ...
And, as is fairly well-known, it is Laing Luxury Homes that carries the bonds. Laing Luxury Homes is still owned by Emaar, the Dubai, United Arab Emirates, real estate development conglomerate. Or at least as far as we know. Emaar, who specializes in luxury developments around the world, now finds itself in a business that is bearing the brunt of the world-wide real estate and banking collapse.
Now why would anyone want to own denuded hillside property, located in a recent fire zone, and prone to mudslides, earthquakes, and other "Acts of God" related inconveniences? Does this "best offer" caveat mean that we're looking at a fire sale auction? So to speak?
And with capital financing nearly non-existent due to the banking collapse both here and elsewhere around the world, where would the financing for a development of multi-million dollar luxury homes come from? And in this market who would be able to buy them? And wouldn't an absence of buyers for these properties signal that savvy investors realize that none of this has bottomed out yet, and that these properties could go for far less in a year or so?
I guess we're going to find out.
So perhaps nobody will bid on these properties, at least to the tune of $51 million? And that a "best offer" bid might actually be considered? If that is the case I'm putting down $20 bucks. As any lottery player can tell you, you just never know.