By Meghan Hall
An apartment tower in Seattle’s Belltown neighborhood has sold to an out-of-state investor for a healthy price tag. According to public documents, Seattle-based RISE Properties Trust (RISE) acquired the 17-story building for $66.5 million, or just under $360,000 per unit. The seller was New Jersey-based 311 Cedar Street LLC, affiliated with Hartz Mountain Industries.
The property, located at 311 Cedar Street, was completed in 2011 and totals 185 units. Units are either one- or two-bedroom, and range in size from about 585 square feet to 722 square feet. According to popular multifamily search website Apartments.com, pricing for one-bedroom units begins at $2,010 per month.
Individual units come equipped with private patios and balconies, stainless appliances, walnut cabinetry, granite countertops and walk-in closets. Community amenities include furnished units, guest apartments, a pool and clubhouse, roof terrace and pet play area.
RISE is a private Canadian REIT focused on multifamily assets within the Pacific Northwest. The REIT targets underperforming apartment properties with the intention of improving operations and value. According to a statement from the company, Thrive Communities, a property management firm, will manage the Alto Apartments.
In addition to the Alto Apartments, RISE also acquired the Westwynd Apartments, a 120-unit complex in Vancouver, Wash. RISE now owns more than 4,450 units and 25 properties across the Pacific Northwest.
“RISE is thrilled to bring both Alto and Westwynd into our portfolio as both assets were secured at a very favorable basis and offer significant investment upside to our investors from both capital and operational improvements,” said Barrett Sigmund, president of RISE in a statement. “We are very proud of our teams for working diligently and in new and unique ways to ensure these transactions were successful amid the COVID-19 pandemic. We look forward to adding value to our communities in the years to come as well as pursuing new investment opportunities throughout our target market of the Pacific Northwest.”
The transaction comes at a time when the multifamily sector and investors are keeping a close eye on vacancy rates and the percentage of tenants paying rent. However, there were several other transactions that closed during the second quarter—an indication that investors are still attracted to the Puget Sound and Seattle metro area, despite economic uncertainty. The Waterscape at Juanita Village sold for $92.9 million, or $471,000 per unit, as did the Borgata Apartments in Bellevue, which traded for $49.49 million, or about $698,000 per unit. Both properties were sold by UDR to Stream Real Estate Development. In a more modest transaction—but still one of the most significant of the quarter—The Villas at Woodinville sold to The Foundation Group for $21.2 million, or $543,000 per unit.
The average price per-unit during the second quarter was $270,845, according to a new report issued by brokerage firm Kidder Mathews. The average vacancy rate was 5.9 percent, up from 5.5 percent a year ago, while asking rents came in at $1,644 per month compared with $1,633 per month during the second quarter of 2019—an indication that thus far the market is holding stable.