Real estate investors in Georgia and elsewhere know that it is important to maintain the value of their properties. However, unforeseen events can, sometimes, threaten to devalue a property. Such is the case with an upscale Manhattan condo complex that was seized by the government as part of a criminal investigation.
Manhattan condo board opposes sale of penthouse
The condo board of Chelsea’s Walker Tower is making a last-ditch effort to block the sale of the building’s penthouse suite. The full-floor unit was recently traded for $18.25 million by the U.S. Department of Justice, which seized the property during a 2016 corruption investigation. However, the condo board claims the price the government got for the unit, which sold for $50.9 million in 2014, is too low and could devalue the other units in the building.
The penthouse was owned by Khadem al-Qubaisi, an Abu Dhabi businessman charged in the 1Malaysia Development Berhad financial scandal. As part of the investigation into al-Qubaisi’s activities, the DOJ filed a forfeiture lawsuit seeking to take possession of the property and oversee its sale. When the government agency sold the unit to Gotham Tower LLC for $18.25 million, the condo board filed a lawsuit claiming that the “unrealistic” price could drive down the value of the building’s other homes. A judge rejected that claim, but the board says it plans to file an appeal.
Real estate legal action
Real estate disputes can be complex and time-consuming. However, real estate investors may be able to avoid such hassles by contacting a real estate law firm for advice. Lawyers at the firm might be able to identify legal red flags before they become a problem. If a legal issue does arise, legal counsel could work to resolve the matter as quickly as possible.