Over the past week, I had the opportunity to take out two ready, willing, & highly qualified (cash contracts) Miami Beach condominium buyers to see The Continuum on South Beach, The Murano at Portofino, Icon South Beach, and The Bentley Bay. It was a shocking experience, in more ways than one.The purchasing criteria:Price point of $1 Million - $1.5 Million for a waterfront two bedroom condominium with water views. There are well over one hundred (100 +) individual condominiums to choose from that easily meet this criteria on the market for sale.

The first impression that I was left with was the complete lack of professionalism (negligence is a better description) on the part of a large number of listing Agents and/or Brokers. Disconnected phones, incomplete and inaccurate information on Multiple Listing for the condos that are on the market, voicemessages saying that the agent is out of the country / unavailable and NOT to leave messages, no voicemail pickup at all in two cases, no response to multiple voicemessages and emails, and sometimes a response days later that a showing can be arranged perhaps once per week. Also, we experienced agents not showing up for appointments or having to pick up keys at an office located over 10 miles away! I was left wondering if the individual condominium owners realize how poorly they are being represented in a BUYERS market.

That being said, I was also impressed that only a very limited number of these waterfront condos are priced to sell. The vast majority of the 100+ initial condos that showed up in a property search, with the above mentioned criteria, are overpriced and nowhere near the market / appraised value. In each of the buildings- there are only a few condos that are truly worthwhile and that a buyer would give serious consideration to making a reasonable offer. I'd like to highlight a few of the deals that were the equivalent of finding a needle in a haystack:

Continuum South Beach - South Tower #2301
Asking Price: $1,395,000
Comparable Sale #1901 : $1,160,000 (Short Sale)
Bedrooms: 2
Bathrooms: 3
Interior S.F.: 1,591 (Asking $876/SF)
Comparable Sold Date: March 10, 2010

Continuum North Tower - #1704
Asking Price: $1,395,000
Comparable Sale (#1204) : $1,250,000 (8/2009)
Bedrooms: 2
Bathrooms: 3
Interior S.F.: 1,491 (Asking $935/SF)
Comparable Sold Date: August, 2009

Bentley Bay Miami Beach - South Tower #1201 (Short Sale)
Asking Price: $870,000
Comparable Sale #1801 : $755,000 (Foreclosure Sale)
Bedrooms: 3
Bathrooms: 4
Interior S.F.: 1,994 (Asking $436/SF)
Comparable Sold Date: December, 2009

Icon South Beach - Condominium Unit #1106
Asking Price: $695,000
Comparable Sale #1706 : $725,000
Bedrooms: 2
Bathrooms: 2
Interior S.F.: 1,452 (Asking $478/SF)
Comparable Sold Date: March 19, 2010

Global Sales Data Source: Southeast Florida Regional MLS