Condo dissolved to make way for student housing
Daily Business Review
Carla Vianna
10 January 2017

Guillermo Mancebo helped terminate a 1983-built condominium to make room for a new student housing complex near Florida International University in Sweetwater.

Mancebo, a Miami attorney with Mancebo Law Group, represented the condo's association and its 33 unit owners in the $16.6 million deal.

The Grove Estates Condominium north of campus at 10940 SW Seventh St. was composed of 33 townhouse-style units. While some were owner-occupied, others were rented to tenants.

declaration required 100% approval by its owners

Mancebo was approached by a developer who wanted to buy the land, terminate the condo and replace the two-story buildings with a modern 20-story residential tower. Grove Estates' condo declaration required 100 percent approval by its owners for a termination to happen.

"It was part education, part psychological and part drama," Mancebo said. "We had to wear many hats with 33 different owners in order to get this deal done."
Mancebo said several owners were unfamiliar with the arcane process of terminating a condo so many hours were spent explaining the deal structure. The process began in April and was marked with multiple meetings with unit owners.

Condo buyouts often lead to lawsuits between sellers and buyers, but Mancebo was able to negotiate a deal that kept the transaction out of the courtroom.

To ensure a smooth transition of ownership, Mancebo negotiated a conditional plan of termination between his clients and the developer, which meant the condo would only be deemed terminated if previously agreed conditions were met. The individual owners retained title to their units after the termination plan was recorded. Once the developer secured the financing and approval needed to move the project forward, the condo was terminated.

each owner walked away with an average of $503,000

When the deal closed Dec. 20, each owner walked away with an average of $503,000. The property was purchased by Collegiate Suites Miami LLC, a company linked to Global City Investments in Miami. The developer hopes to secure adjacent property and ultimately build 1,000 units of student housing.

Mancebo said the average price of each property last April was $130,000, or nearly a quarter of the buyout price.

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