The Stranger posted results of the Press Auction yesterday. When the market was doing well, condo inventory used to sell within weeks and sometimes within days. In the current economic climate, some are buying homes at sizeable discounts through auctions. "On average, 15 condos in the Press building auctioned for about 80 percent of their listing price and over 30 percent of their starting bid."
For existing Press homeowners who bought their units the old fashioned way, they may not be too thrilled with the discounted pricing. On the other hand, they're probably better off having their neighboring units owned, albeit at a 20% discount, than having so much of the building remain unsold.
Frankly, I find the 20% discount and 15 contracts in a day to be encouraging. Most MLS listings are asking for 10-20% less than they did a few years ago anyway so 20% isn't exactly a fire sale. Moreover, if we had to pick between no activity at all and some activity at a discount, I'd go for the latter.