Sunny Isles Beach developer attempts improbable

Miami /
Jan.January 14, 2014 12:00 PM

Developer Joseph Milton, who with his family has constructed condo towers in northeast Miami-Dade County for more than two decades, is attempting to accomplish the nearly improbable in this latest South Florida preconstruction condo project boom: build a new “luxury” project with below-average monthly maintenance fees.

Milton’s proposed Parque Towers, originally announced during the previous real estate boom as towers four and five of St. Tropez On The Bay, is planned as a pair of condo buildings with a combined 329 units located on the south side of Sunny Isles Boulevard west of Collins Avenue in Sunny Isles Beach.

Despite purportedly being a “6-star condominium” that has attracted the attention of suspended New York Yankees slugger and active South Florida real estate investor Alex Rodriguez, the proposed Parque Towers would include monthly maintenance fees of less than 45 cents per square foot, according to the project’s Declaration Of Condominium filed on Dec. 18 in Miami-Dade County.

In dollar terms, maintenance fees for one of Parque Towers’ proposed two-bedroom condo units with 1,535 square feet would be less than $670 per month. For the project’s proposed penthouses that feature nearly 4,550 square feet, monthly maintenance fees would be less than $1,985 per square foot.

As part of the condominium declaration, the developer “guarantees” the monthly maintenance fees for at least six months after the first unit is purchased or until the individual unit owners take control of the condo association and its respective operating budget, according to government records.

Until the guarantees expire, Parque Towers would be offering a monthly maintenance fee that is comparable to the neighboring St. Tropez On The Bay, where fees are less than 47 cents, according to the Southeast Florida MLXchange.

The proposed Jade Signature, a new 57-story condo tower with 192 units under construction on an oceanfront site in the 16900 block of Collins Avenue, is the only Sunny Isles preconstruction project to display its maintenance fees on the Southeast Florida MLXchange. Jade’s monthly fees average nearly 85 cents.

Overall in Sunny Isles, monthly maintenance fees for condo units built during the last South Florida real estate boom and available today for resale range from 37 cents to 85 cents per square foot. The monthly maintenance fee for the median priced condo on the resale market is 80 cents per square foot.

Going forward, the unanswered question is whether buyers of South Florida’s more than 180 preconstruction condo towers will demand luxury projects also provide attractive monthly maintenance fees as competition intensifies for buyers.

Peter Zalewski is real estate columnist for The Real Deal who founded Condo Vultures LLC, a consultancy and publishing company, as well as Condo Vultures Realty LLC and CVR Realty brokerages and the Condo Ratings Agency, an analytics firm. The Condo Ratings Agency operates CraneSpotters.com, a preconstruction condo projects website, in conjunction with the Miami Association of Realtors.


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