Expo 62 condos had a low profile sneak preview last Friday for the public which started at 7:00am. One would think that 7:00am is early for any type of preview event. Nevertheless, the sales center commented to me that they have homebuyers standing at the sales center door even earlier on preview day. So what’s so special about Expo?
Designed by Weber +Thompson and developed by a member of the Intra-corp companies, this built green project in Queen Anne will feature 114 unit condominiums with 48(!) different layouts. They include the following floor plans:
– Open one bedroom
– One bedroom plus den
– Two bedroom
– Three bedroom penthouse
In addition to the floor plans above, 13 live/work lofts will also be available on the street level. A combination of handi plank, metal and mondarin style (compositions of brightly colored rectangular forms) windows is used for the building exterior.
The building amenities will be designed by Robin Chell Design whose recent project includes the Parc condos. Completion is slated for summer 2008 and more firm pricing will be available in a few weeks’ time.
Preliminary Expo 62 price ranges
(Update 01/17/2008: Expo 62 has converted from pre-sale condos to "luxury apartment rentals" for summer of 2008.) Read more here.
When I inquired if they are taking reservationa for their units, Peter Oh (one of the 2 sales representatives working yesterday) responded that “We don’t have a reservation policy. If a homebuyer is interested in any particular floor plan, we will provide them with firm pricing when it becomes available. They can go into a purchase and sale agreement right after that. Our objective is not to accept as many reservations as possible for our units but to focus on providing our sales effort to homebuyers who are serious about making a purchase and are making the effort to visit our sale center.” Peter also described Expo 62 as the "modern mid-century condo with a great suburban-urban location."
Here are some of my impressions of the project:
1.) This building is choc full of mini amenities. Some things Peter referenced were a book exchange library located in the lobby, bike storage, wine & cigar storage, dog cleaning area, doggy bathroom area on the roof, and roof top herb garden (presumably elevated and far from the doggy bathroom).
2.) Finishes are not 5 star hotel quality but perfectly fine for urban living and the styles are fresh and well designed.
3.) Even though Expo 62 condos is similar to Trio in some ways, its location is much better. Less traffic noise and more friendly sidewalks yet still close to most downtown activities.
4.) Homeowner dues seem a little high for a wood framed building at 51 cents/sq. ft. Since you are getting a variety of different amenities, you’ll definitley be paying for it.
5) The sales center seemed to have a great vibe. Peter Oh seemed to have a genuine passion for the project, was on top of his facts, and seemed like a straight shooter.
6) The building design is fairly unique employing a mix of several design elements including the colored mondrian blocks of glass. This is a welcome change from the giant blocks of concrete and tinted glass we now see all over downtown. Too bad it’s a wood framed building — some buyers will probably look elsewhere if they want the peace of mind of a concrete and steel structure.
Final thoughts: Expo has a lot of potential with a solid location and thoughtful design. We’ll see how their exact pricing shakes out.
Expo 62 condos previous post
Expo 62 condos slideshow
2br/2ba for low 500’s seems pretty reasonable for a new bldg.
I’d have to disagree, I’ve never been in a sales center that had a vibe as bad as Expo62. Seems very oddly laid out.
Expo62 was a joke IMO.
It’s the perfect location. Is the sales center open?
Whether or not you’re a fan of the swingin’ 50’s / 60’s or whatever it may be marketing, that really has nothing to do with what living in the building will be like. I suppose it would help if you like Piet Mondrian’s work, which I personally do. The other site agent, Katy Lassey, was just as helpful as Peter.
The first 2 floors of the building are steel / concrete both above and below. These floors mostly consist of live/work lofts, but also include the units backing up to the rear terrace.
What exactly gave you a “bad vibe”? What was “odd” about the layout? Vague and pessimistic anonymous posts don’t add value to the content.
The sales center is open (156 Denny Way) from 11.00am-6.00pm during the weekend.
let’s be honest, regardless of the 50’s marketing and even the wood frame, the location alone makes this a good place to consider.
Took a walk by the construction site this afternoon and it was incredible what a few blocks can do in terms of peace and quiet. I felt my blood pressure go down instantly. The south and south west facing units will probably have the best karma based on the slope of the land.
Hey I just saw on another blog that Expo 62 was just cancelled converted to apartments. The developer has sold to an out of state investor who will release the building as an apartment complex. Is this true?
We signed a contract with EXPO62 to purchase a unit back in May 2007 and now they’re converting to apartment, which means they’re breaking the contract. What kind of legal action can we take?
Probably none. Most developers use good lawyers and their contracts protect them in case they want to bail.
Read the PSA. The developer had until January 15th to notify buyers and back out unconditionally.
Mike, I’m one of the unlucky 17. Don’t have PSA in front of me. Would like to read up on this tonight. Where does it give the Jan 15 date? Thanks so much, Bob
I just finished reading my contract and there isn’t any date on my PSA and it’s not stated that they can back out the contract anytime they want. If we(buyers) will lose our earnest money if we break the contract. I expect the same from them, otherwise, what’s the point of signing a contract? I’m going to talk to a lawyer before I sign the release form for sure.
I should point out that I’m an unhappy buyer at Expo 62 as well (#407) – and that I’m not speaking out on behalf of anyone other than myself or giving legal advice.
If you look at section 7b, near the end of page 4 of my PSA, it more or less clearly states that the seller can terminate the agreement before January 15th.
“Upon such termination and refund/payment being made to Buyer, neither the Seller nor the Seller’s agents shall be under any further or continuing obligation or liability for moving costs, housing costs, financing costs, loss of financing, increase in interest rate, lost profits, or special, indirect, incidental, consequential or punitive damages, and Buyer and Seller shall each be released from any and all claims by the the other of any kind of nature.”
I’m not a lawyer, but I read into this enough to decide not to lock a mortgage rate until after 1/15/08.
Everyone will pressure you into locking in at the earliest opportunity – the site agent, the site lender, your lender, even your buyer’s agent. Luckily, I’m the analyzing type that reads all 15 pages of legalese and saw that I was basically bending myself over to do so before January 15th.
I omitted the 1st sentence of the section which is sort of the whole gist:
“Seller reserves the right to terminate this Agreement on or before January 15, 2008 by written notice to Buyer, and instructions to the Escrow Agent to return the earnest money to Buyer, with any interest that has accrued thereon.”
Come to think of it, I didn’t receive written notice until today, January 17th. This is also a fantastic example of real estate trying to cope with technology. I heard about the cancellation via a blog post on Google reader 48 hours before John at Intracorp bothered to call me. His excuse was that it is impossible to notify everyone at the same time. Seeing that they were obligated to provide written notice, email would have been a good bet. You can write lots of people simultaneously. Even my grandmother knows how to do that.
the 1st sentence of the section 7b in my contract states a little different than yours, page 4 section 7b said:
“Seller’s Failure to Close: In the event Seller is unable to close the sale in accordance with the Agreement notwithstanding Seller’s reasonable and good faith efforts, provided Buyer is not in material default. Buyer, as Buyer’s sole remedy, may elect to rescind the Agreement in writing and the earnest money shall be refunded to the Buyer.”
“…notwithstanding Seller’s reasonable and good faith efforts” – that’s asking for interpretation
Peter is probably right. So long as you get your earnest money back, it’s prob not worth it to try to take any expensive legal action. One thing you might try and do is see if your buyer’s agent knows someone at Intracorp and ask for a discount or a bunch of upgrades from one of their other projects (assuming any of them appeal to you.)
My buyer’s agent did tell me that very early versions of the contract may not have had the January 15th provision in that section.
The copy you have quoted is identical to my PSA’s section (ii) under 7b. I’m guessing the section (i) in my contract was added in after your agreement was entered.
You are absolutely right about good faith being open to interpretation. If your buyer’s agent is not especially interested or does not have other clients involved in this situation, you may want to contact my agent Marco Kronen at John L Scott. Wendy could also help of course, but I don’t know that she already has other clients in this predicament.
Hey, my mail has turned up with a letter from Intracorp!
Intracorp has offered Expo buyers a $10k “Future Purchase Coupon” for other Intracorp projects. At first, this sounds great, but let’s just examine the fine print:
“In appreciation for your interest in Expo 62, John Street LLC (“Seller”) hereby agrees to provide you with Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000) of value at closing if you enter into a binding purchase agreement to purchase a property directly from any affiliate of Seller in Washington State on or before June 30, 2008. For purposes of this Coupon, the Ten Thousand Dollars of value may at Seller’s discretion consist of a credit against the purchase price, a credit against closing costs, a reduction of the cost of upgrades, prepayment of home owner’s dues, or similar item of ascertainable value, or any combination of the foregoing. All such value shall be provided at and as of the closing under the applicable purchase agreement. This coupon is not assignable”
Technically, the Seller could force you to use this on upgrades at their sole discretion, so I wouldn’t get my hopes up on sweet deals. The only other interesting project Intracorp has going is Parc, which I’m not terribly fond of. Resale units at the Parc are already discounted much more than the $10k off of 2007 developer prices that this Intracorp coupon is worth.
Frankly, if Expo wouldn’t have been so *cocky* to attempt to sell the units in phases, they may have been alright. I spent lots of time in the sales center early on and all to often people wanted to inquire about the most expensive units which Intracorp for some reason was not offering for sale at that time. In short, the product marketing manager (or whatever it’s called in real estate 10 years behind the rest of the world) should be terminated.
Instead of signing away any further rights by accepting the rescission agreement I opted to contact a lawyer.
There are at least two versions of the PSA, one with a specified date of rescission – Jan. 15th – and one without. Fortunately I purchased into Expo 62 early enough to have received the latter contract. BUT, I suspect that Intracorp may have blown this stipulated date as I know I received my rescission agreement on the 18th postmarked – and this is the critical date – the 16th.
Language in the contract stipulates that Intracorp must make a “good-faith” effort to complete the sale – clearly they did not.
The pricing for my unit was offered below market-value. As such, I feel that by failing to close this sale I am out an appreciable sum.
Further, I feel insulted and irritated by Intracorp’s miserly offer of compensation- 10K off my next Intracorp purchase – and the, to date, 4 phone calls asking my fiancée to send in the rescission agreement, the 3 latter calls made after she clearly stated we needed time to review the document.
As such I feel it is wholly appropriate to pursue legal remedy. The attorney I have spoken with is interested in possibly pursuing a class-action suit against Intracorp.
If you are interested in what legal standing your case may have please contact me via email: email@example.com and I will pass your information along to my attorney.
In the interest of full disclosure, I happen to work at a condo law firm. This is the firm I’ve gone to for legal advice.
I just wanted to take a second to let everyone know that Intracorp met with me and my fiancée today. Together we came to a satisfactory resolution of our issues with them. We are both now happy with how this situation has worked out.