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Thursday, Jun 30, 2022

AvalonBay Buys Tustin Apartments at 20% Discount

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One of the largest apartment complexes in Orange County to trade hands this year sold at a nearly 20% discount.

A unit of Arlington, Va.-based AvalonBay Communities Inc. recently closed on the purchase of the 628-unit Creekside Meadows in Tustin.

The apartments sold for $98 million, or about $156,000 apiece. The complex was bought by AvalonBay Value Added Fund II LP, a private investment fund where AvalonBay Communities counts a 31% equity interest.

The Tustin deal is one of the largest apartment sales in OC this year, following a March $128 million purchase of the 349-unit Skyline Towers in Santa Ana by Palo Alto-based Essex Property Trust Inc.

It still appears to be a money-loser for Creekside’s prior owners, Seattle-based Security Properties Inc., which bought the complex four years ago for a reported $123 million, or about $196,000 per unit.

Security Properties bought the 1970s, 70-building complex with backing from the State of Illinois Public Pension Fund and did a fair amount of renovation work.

Irvine’s Bascom Group LLC sold the property in that deal.

AvalonBay said it is funding the latest transaction in part with a $59.1 million, low-interest loan from Fannie May.

Platinum Push

The new owner of a stalled 336-unit housing project in Anaheim’s Platinum Triangle thinks it could take about four years to complete work there.

A unit of Australia’s Macquarie Group Ltd. took over a condominium project at 1331 E. Katella Ave.—previously known as Dwell@Katella—earlier this year.

The 4.5-acre site previously was owned by Los Angeles-based West Millennium Homes but was placed into receivership last year as the builder fell into bankruptcy.

Macquarie said it is working to finish the first 92 homes at the project, but recently filed a request with Anaheim looking to extend the length of its development agreement for the remainder of the project, which was set to expire this summer.

The developer was granted a five-year extension from Anaheim’s planning commission, according to city records, which is a year longer than Macquarie originally was looking for.

The new development group—operating under the Macquarie Platinum Katella Inc. name—hopes to complete work for the first phase of the project at the development by February 2011, according to filings with the city of Anaheim.

The project still appears to be earmarked for condos, according to city filings. Sales activity could start within a few months prior to the first phase’s completion, officials with the developer said in a letter to the city.

Azusa Reworked

Newport Beach’s Christopher Development Group said it has found a new partner to help get a stalled housing development in Azusa moving ahead again.

Christopher Development, which is part of Newport Beach’s PLC Land Corp., said it is partnering with Costa Mesa’s Brookfield Homes Southland Group Inc. for a 517-acre master-planned community in Los Angeles County called Rosedale.

The project opened in 2006, under an ownership group called Azusa Land Partners that included executives from Christopher Development.

The project was expected to hold 1,250 homes, but only about a tenth of those have been built and sold due to the housing downturn, according to local reports.

Azusa Land Partners went into foreclosure and was heading toward a trustee sale until Brookfield Homes Southland, an operating unit of Brookfield Homes Corp., was brought in as an investor. Terms of its involvement were not disclosed.

Other builders, including Irvine’s Standard Pacific Corp., were reportedly interested in buying the land, which was valued at more than $50 million.

The new development group for the project is called Rosedale Land Partners. A time frame for when construction could begin again hasn’t been disclosed.

Raintree Deals

Laguna Niguel-based investor Raintree Partners LLC has made its sixth apartment complex deal since kicking off operations in 2007.

The privately held company recently closed on the acquisition of Boulder Creek Apartments, a 264-unit apartment complex in Riverside.

Raintree paid $24.6 million, or about $93,000 per apartment. San Francisco-based BRE Properties Inc. was the seller.

The property, near the University of Cali- fornia, Riverside, is 96% full.

Raintree financed the deal with a 10-year, $18.6 million loan from Freddie Mac that carries an interest rate of 4.5%.

BRE Properties, which also owns about a dozen apartment properties in OC, bought the complex in 2002. It paid about $17.8 million and later invested another $3.2 million in improvements, according to regulatory filings.

Factoring in about $4.3 million of accumulated depreciation, BRE is expected to make about $7.8 million on the complex’s sale.

Raintree kicked off deal-making in mid-2009. As of last year it had $200 million in funding, officials said at the time.

Mark Mueller
Mark Mueller
Mark is the Editor-in-Chief of the Orange County Business Journal, one of the premier regional business newspapers in the country. He’s the fifth person to hold the editor’s position in the paper’s long history. He oversees a staff of about 15 people. The OCBJ is considered a must-read for area business executives. The print edition of the paper is the primary source of local news for most of the Business Journal’s subscribers, which includes most of OC’s major corporate and community players. Mark’s been with the paper since 2005, and long served as the real estate reporter for the paper, breaking hundreds of commercial and residential real estate stories. He took on the editor’s position in 2018.

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