Jack Seiler, City of Fort Lauderdale Mayor (Melanie Bell)
In a move to avoid leaving money on the table, Fort Lauderdale wants a plan to cut costs and scoop up missed revenue from its real estate holdings.
The city is sitting on a 700-parcel portfolio it once managed in-house. After a competitive bidding process, it recruited national brokerage house CBRE Inc. to take stock of its holdings and map out a plan to bring in extra cash.
“Fort Lauderdale is in the midst of a renaissance, with population and job growth driving residents and offices back to the downtown for the live-work-play environment,” said Ken Krasnow, CBRE’s South Florida managing director. “With infrastructure improvements underway, such as the All Aboard Florida commuter rail line connecting Fort Lauderdale with the entire region, this is an opportune time for the city to assess and evaluate its long-term real estate strategy and implement plans that will positively impact its residents and businesses for generations to come.”
The city will pay broker fees of 4 percent to 5 percent for sales, 4 percent for new leases and 3 percent for lease management, according to public documents.
City officials are tight-lipped about specifics, but staffers said the goal is to catalog all city-owned property and determine its best uses. The portfolio includes vacant land, surplus property and many parcels used for municipal operations and services.
“We expect this comprehensive approach to maximize operational efficiencies, optimize our real estate assets, reduce surplus properties and generate additional revenue streams that can be reinvested in our community to benefit our neighbors,” Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jack Seiler said.
Instead of relying on in-house operations, the city recruited CBRE for advice on property valuation, lease management, portfolio organization, strategic planning for leasing and sales, listing services and overseeing escrow.
“The firm’s mandate is to reduce the city’s operating real estate expenses, align real estate operations with the services provided to citizens, monetize underutilized real estate assets and dispose of surplus assets,” CBRE said.