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Deed: Everglades Island house sells for $17.5 million

Posted On: 04-13-2013

By Darrell Hofheinz

Daily News Real Estate Writer

For three years, Chicago real estate developer and investor Fred Latsko has greeted spring’s arrival with a Palm Beach real estate deal. And Thursday, he notched a $4 million profit when he closed an off-the-market sale recorded at $17.5 million for an outdated house he acquired a year ago at 757 Island Drive.

The property wraps around the southwestern tip of Everglades Island with 380 feet of waterfront and expansive views. It measures 9/10 of an acre.

Latsko sold the property and its 1957 house to a fellow Illinois resident, Thomas A. Tisbo, who acted as trustee for the Sea View Development Land Trust, according to the deed recorded by the Palm Beach County Clerk’s office.

The trust’s address in Barrington, Ill., is the same as Tisbo’s home, which he shares with his wife, Eugenia “Jeannie” Tisbo. The couple also owns a 5.6-acre property in Wellington through a limited liability company, property records show.

Tisbo is president and CEO of Batavia, Ill.-based Suncast Corp., which manufactures and distributes lawn-and-garden products, storage sheds and equipment.

Latsko had used three limited liability companies last April to buy the Everglades Island house for a recorded $13.5 million.

Linda A. Gary Real Estate handled both sides of this week’s transaction, just as it did a year ago, broker Linda Gary confirmed. She represented the seller’s side in the deal that closed Monday, while agent Susan Furman acted for the buyer.

Furman said Thursday that her clients, whom she declined to identify by name, are planning to build a new home on the property to take advantage of “the beauty of being on the water and having the whole southwest corner of the island.”

Neither agent would comment on details about the transaction or their clients. Latsko and the Tisbos could not be reached for comment.

The house had not been listed for sale in the multiple listing services that serve the island since the Latsko-controlled entities bought it last year. At that time, Gary was marketing the property at $15.9 million, a price she said was based on the value of the land alone. The four-bedroom house — with nearly 7,500 square feet of living space, inside and out — was ripe for renovations, Gary’s former listing said. She also stressed the property’s wide views of the Intracoastal Waterway, Palm Beach and West Palm Beach.

Latsko owns North End home

Latsko still owns the North End house he bought in his own name in April 2011 at 220 Polmer Park for about $3.79 million, property records show.

Gary’s agency had once listed the Polmer Park house for sale for Latsko at a little more than $5.3 million, but the house is no longer on the market, according to a search of the Palm Beach Board of Realtors Multiple Listing Service.

A little more than a month ago, Latsko received town approval to knock down the two-story Island Drive house and remove its pool and driveway, but those projects were never carried out. Sellers often seek demolition permits prior to a real estate sale to make an outdated house more marketable or to satisfy the demands of a would-be buyer, according to local real estate observers.

Latsko owned the Island Drive property through a trio of entities. Palm Beach Island I LLC held a 30.26 percent interest in the property, Palm Beach Island II LLC owned 37.82 percent; and Palm Beach Island III LLC had a 31.92-percent ownership interest, property records show.

Tisbos’ Wellington ties

The Tisbos have strong ties to Wellington, where their adult daughter, Lauren, is active on the equestrian show-jumping circuit. In 2009, the Tisbos — using Tequestrian Farms LLC — paid a recorded $11 million for 3418 Grand Prix Farms, a property with a 24-stall show barn, paddocks and grooming stalls plus another barn with a four-bedroom apartment above it, real estate records show.

In addition, Jeannie and Lauren Tisbo co-own a 4,000-square foot Wellington home at 12630 Sunnydale Drive, which the family originally acquired through a trust in 2006, records show.

Latsko had signed a contract to buy the Everglades Island property nine months before the 2012 deal actually closed, becoming the second-largest house sale of last season. Gary has declined to specify the reasons for the delay of that closing.

Latsko bought the house from John B. Haggin Jr., whose late parents — John Ben Ali and Namoa Haggin — had owned it for four decades. He inherited it after his mother’s death in 2003.

Latsko owns about 50 retail properties on Chicago’s North Side, according to published reports. Last April — the same month he bought the Island Drive property — he was part of a venture that sold Lululemon Athletica’s Rush Street building in Chicago for nearly $21 million in a deal that reportedly set a record for commercial real estate there. Latsko had helped develop the property.

Over the past several years, Latsko, a principal in Chicago-based Structure Management Midwest, made headlines for financial troubles related to commercial projects he developed and lenders who hadn’t been paid, according to media reports, including stories in Crain’s Chicago Business. In 2010, he settled a $21 million foreclosure suit filed against a portfolio of retail buildings he developed in Chicago, according to press reports.

“I’m out of my litigation now,” Latsko told ChicagoRealEstateDaily.com last April. “I can finally start playing offense instead of defense.”

 

Source: Darrell Hofheinz, April 13, 2013, Palm Beach Daily News

http://www.palmbeachdailynews.com/news/news/national/deed-everglades-island-house-sells-for-175m/nXK7Z/

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