Miami firm buys 4 hotels in Alabama for $36 million

Homewood Suites hotel in Daphne, Alabama

Miami-based Sefira Capital LLC  paid $36 million for a portfolio of four hotels in Alabama, the firm’s first investment outside Florida.

Sefira paid about $80,000 per room for the Hilton-branded hotels, which have a total of 440 rooms.

The firm acquired an 80-room Hampton Inn in Mobile, Alabama, and three hotels in nearby Daphne, Alabama: a 104-room Homewood Suites, a 124-room Hilton Garden Inn and a 132-room Hampton Inn.

The Alabama acquisition is Sefira’s fifth project. The boutique investment firm also acquired a hotel in Cocoa Beach and an office complex in Tampa, and developed a multifamily residential property in Jacksonville and a self-storage facility in Naples.

Mijael Attias and Aby Galsky formed Sefira Capital in September 2015 to acquire and develop commercial real estate.

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Lennar to build 180 homes in solar-powered town

Rendering of Babcock Ranch

Miami-based Lennar will build 180 homes at Babcock Ranch, a master-planned development near Fort Myers that will run mainly on solar power.

Lennar plans to build twin-villa homes priced at about $180,000 and single-family homes with prices starting in the $220,000s.

The twin-villa homes will be 1,417 square feet to 1,564 square feet in size, and they will have two or three bedrooms and two-car garages. The interiors will feature granite counter tops, wood cabinets, and stainless steel General Electric appliances.

Florida Power & Light is building  a 443-acre photovoltaic power plant on the grounds of Babcock Ranch, which is expected to grow to 19,500 households and a population of 50,000 residents.

Palm Beach Gardens-based Kitson & Partners, led by developer Sydney Kitson, began site preparation work in November.

Kitson & Partners bought a 91,000-acre ranch in Lee County from the Babcock family in 2006 and subsequently sold 73,000 acres to the state as a natural preserve, retaining 18,000 acres for the Babcock Ranch development, which was slowed by the housing market downturn in the late 2000s.

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Home sales drop again in Miami-Dade and Broward, rise in Palm Beach in February: Realtors reports

Aerial view of homes in Broward County

Miami-Dade County home and condo sales fell by 10 percent in February, marking one of the biggest declines in recent months. Broward also saw a decline in sales  including a 16 percent drop in single-family home sales  while Palm Beach County reported a year-over-year increase, according to the associations of Realtors.

Home prices, which are rising nationwide, were up in all three counties in February.

Miami-Dade

Residential sales in Miami-Dade fell 10 percent in February compared to the same month of the previous year. The county recorded 881 single-family home sales last month, down 10 percent from 979 in February of last year. Condo sales also continued falling, by 10 percent, to 954 last month from 1,060 in February of last year.

Residential properties sold last month totaled $834.1 million, a 1.5 percent increase from the $821.5 million recorded in February 2016, according to the Miami Association of Realtors.

Single-family home prices keep rising in Miami-Dade, increasing by 18.8 percent to $321,000 last month from $270,221 in February 2016. February marks the 63rd consecutive month that prices for single-family homes have increased. Condo prices also jumped year-over-year by 6.3 percent, to $220,000 from $206,950.

Meanwhile, the supply of single-family homes decreased slightly, to 6,489 last month from 6,558 listings last February. The county ‘s supply of condos rose, however, by 10 percent to 15,289 from 13,852 listings during the same period in 2016. And that number is likely to grow as more buildings are delivered, experts say.

Properties priced between $250,000 and $600,000 continued to fare much better than other sectors of Miami-Dade’s residential market. In February, mid-market home sales jumped 10.5 percent. That range of home sales represented more than a quarter of all home sales in the county.

Broward

Single-family home sales declined by nearly 16 percent in Broward County, while condo sales actually saw a slight year-over-year increase. Residential prices rose across the board in Broward.

In Broward, 988 houses sold in February compared to 1,175 during the same month last year. Condo sales were up by 1.8 percent, to 1,171 from 1,150. The good news in Broward is that inventory is down across the board: active listings for single-family homes are down 8 percent and condos are down 7.2 percent year-over-year.

The Greater Fort Lauderdale Realtors said that Broward has 3.9 months of supply of single-family homes, and 6.4 months of supply of condos and townhomes.

Palm Beach

Residential sales in Palm Beach County increased by 1.2 percent to 1,160, according to the Realtors Association of the Palm Beaches. Inventory increased by 8 percent for single-family homes. That puts the county’s supply of houses on the market at 5.4 months.

The median sales price for single-family homes increased by 6.8 percent to $315,000 in February, compared to February of 2016.

The association did not provide overall home price statistics for Palm Beach County.

Overall, the share of distressed sales, which includes short sales and bank-owned properties, continued to fall in South Florida, reflecting a nationwide trend.

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Fiesta Beachcomber 24

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Publix owns more of its stores for 10th year in a row

A Publix store

Lakeland-based Publix Super Markets increased the percentage of company-owned stores in its grocery chain for the tenth year in a row in 2016 to almost 30 percent, the Palm Beach Post reported. Store acquisitions increased the company-owned percentage to 29.1 percent at the end of 2016 from 25.9 percent a year earlier.

An analysis by the Post shows that only 10.7 percent of Publix stores were owned by the company in 2006. The newspaper analyzed annual reports that Publix must file with the Securities & Exchange Commission because of the large amount of Publix stock owned by the company’s employee stock ownership program. In its 2016 annual report, Publix said it netted $2 billion of earnings on $34 billion of revenue last year.  [Palm Beach Post] – Mike Seemuth

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