By Jack Stubbs
On Tuesday, May 21st, the Strata on California Apartments in West Seattle sold for $18.7 million, or approximately $301,602 per unit, King County records show. The buyer was Marina Del Rey, California-based MHE Real Estate, a company that focuses on developing student housing, multifamily, retail and commercial properties throughout the Western U.S. The seller of the property was RISE Properties Trust, a Canada-based real estate trust that focuses on the multifamily sector in the greater Seattle area.
The four-story Strata on California Apartments, located at 6312 California Ave. SW, was built in 1987 and contains 62 units, according to the property listing on apartments.com. Renovated in 2008, the apartment complex offers a mix of one- and two-bedroom units that range from 630 to 935 square feet and rent for between $1,884 and $2,374, according to the property’s web site.
Some of the apartment amenities available to residents include wood fireplaces, granite countertops, covered patios and individual climate control. The asset also offers on-site property management services, insulated windows, off-street parking and access-controlled entryways.
Sitting in the Seaview neighborhood of West Seattle, the property emphasizes its contemporary Northwest architecture and offers views of the Puget Sound. Strata on California is approximately seven miles south of downtown Seattle and five miles west of the Industrial District. The property is also just over two miles from South Seattle College and is proximate to the West Seattle golf course.
There have not been too many multifamily property transactions in West Seattle in recent months, although California Avenue itself has seen some activity over the last couple of quarters. In early December 2018, a development proposal submitted by Caron Architecture and Capelouto Development Company for a seven story, 75-unit apartment building at 4508 California Ave. SW was given the green light by the Southwest Seattle Design Review Board.
In early January 2019, Seattle-based Cadence Real Estate sold a 26,438 square foot mixed-use property located at 6040 California Ave. SW—just one block from Strata on California—for $10.7 million to Cohanim 6040 Cali LLC.
MHE and Select Student Housing focus on the student housing sector across the West Coast. With over 4,000 beds under ownership, MHE creates luxury living for students in areas that are adjacent to 4-year universities, according to the company’s web site. MHE’s student housing properties tend to be fully rehabbed to a new construction standard of finish.
In terms of its overall development strategy for other property types, MHE focuses on acquiring, rehabilitating and managing commercial and residential properties while striving to enhance the qualify-of-life for businesses and tenants. MHE is actively looking to increase its unit count in markets where it already operates properties, in areas including Seattle, WA; Eugene, OR; and Los Angeles.
RISE Properties Trust owns a number of multifamily properties throughout the Puget Sound region, ranging from the Renton—on the southern edge of Lake Washington—to the Snohomish County city of Lynnwood north of Seattle. In addition to its recent sale of Strata on California, RISE Properties has also made various acquisitions since third quarter 2018. In mid-August 2018, in a transaction that marked the company’s thirteenth acquisition in the Puget Sound region, the company spent $69 million, or roughly $511,111 per unit, to acquire the 135-Unit Modera Capitol Hill Apartments in Seattle from Dallas-based Mill Creek Residential.
RISE Properties’ capture of the Modera Capitol Hill Apartments added to the company’s portfolio of various other other apartment properties throughout the Puget Sound region, some of which include the 192-unit Artestia By the Lake apartment community in Everett; the 83-unit Borgata property in Renton; and the 126-unit Station Nine apartment complex in Lynnwood.