Maintenance fees rise 8% at Echo Brickell condo tower

Echo Brickell rendering (inset: Peter Zalewski)
Echo Brickell rendering (inset: Peter Zalewski)

For the second time in less than a year, the maintenance fees at the planned Echo Brickell luxury condo tower in the Brickell area of Greater Downtown Miami are slated to change from the original prices unveiled in October 2013.

The developer of the proposed 57-story, 180-unit Echo Brickell condo tower and an “automatic parking system” recorded a “second amendment” to the project’s Declaration of Condominium on Aug. 20 raising the monthly “guaranteed assessments” by 8 percent to about $1.07 per square foot, according to Miami-Dade County records.

Monthly maintenance fees for residential condos in the Echo Brickell project are now projected to average nearly $1,400 per month, with individual unit assessments ranging from less than $740 to more than $4,700.

Before last month’s price revision, the monthly maintenance fees in the Carlos Ott-designed project planned for a site at 1451 Brickell Avenue were slated to average about $0.99 per square foot monthly based on a December 2013 filing.

Originally, maintenance fees in the planned Echo Brickell project were at $1.17 per square foot per month when the original Declaration of Condominium was recorded in October 2013.

By comparison, the mean proposed monthly maintenance fee for preconstruction condo towers in Greater Downtown Miami was $0.67 per square foot through Aug. 1, according to the latest Developers Price Survey.

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(For disclosure purposes, my firm operates the website).

Only the planned 60-story One Thousand Museum condo tower on Biscayne Boulevard in the Central Business District – with a proposed maintenance fee of $1.10 per square foot monthly – has a higher announced assessment than the Echo Brickell project in Greater Downtown Miami.

Overall in Greater Downtown Miami, monthly condo maintenance fees for existing units start below 60 cents per square foot.

The unanswered question going forward is what impact – if any – rich maintenance fees will have on preconstruction condo sales as competition intensifies for presale buyers of the nearly 18,300 units proposed for Greater Downtown Miami.

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, a preconstruction condo projects website, in conjunction with the Miami Association of Realtors.