TruAmerica Multifamily and Investcorp, a joint venture partner, have acquired the 456-unit Waterleaf Apartments located in North San Diego County’s suburb of Vista in an off-market real estate transaction valued at an astonishing $86.2 million. RedHill Realty and Investors, AEW Capital Management, sold the property.
With Waterleaf’s acquisition, TruAmerica has been involved in two of the largest multifamily transactions recorded in supply-constrained San Diego County in the past 18 months. GlobeSt.com previously reported that TruAmerica also advised on the $81 million acquisition of Plaza D’Oro, a 221-unit class A apartment community in Oceanside that occurred in October of 2013.
Since being founded in July 2013 as a joint venture between industry veteran Robert Hart and The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, TruAmerica has rapidly built a new acquisition portfolio of 4,900 units that are valued at over $1 billion, further boosting its Western US management portfolio to 13,000 units.
TruAmerica owns many apartment communities spanning from California to Colorado as well as Washington.
“While the previous owners were good stewards of the property, Waterleaf remains an excellent value-add opportunity in a market with strong multifamily fundamentals,” says Greg Campbell, TruAmerica’s senior managing director of acquisitions. “The property is located along the Highway 78 / Interstate 15 transportation corridor in one of the most desirable rental markets in North San Diego County. Waterleaf benefits from abundant drive-by traffic and proximity to shopping, recreation and several sizeable employment centers.”
He continued, saying that “San Diego is experiencing an overwhelming supply-demand imbalance, and with a strong barrier to entry for new development, the competition for institutional quality multifamily assets is fierce,” says Campbell. “Still, we were able to acquire a quality asset with tremendous upside potential at significant discount to replacement cost.”
He adds, “San Diego is one of our top target markets, and we are attracted to the expanding economy and low vacancy rates found throughout the County. The vacancy rate for the market is projected to dip below 3.5% in 2015. In North San Diego County, there are some exciting economic developments that have grabbed our attention. Two exits to the East of Waterleaf you have the $300 million Carlsbad Mall conversion that will create 1,200 new construction jobs and 1,000 permanent jobs. In addition, the new desalination plant, also in Carlsbad, will create over 500 new jobs when completed later this year. The I-78 corridor is an area that we like a great deal, and we expect to invest there again in short order.”
The property was 97% leased at closing. Waterleaf was built in 1984 on a 20-acre site well located in northwest Vista. It is a mix of one- and two-bedroom apartments that range in size from 740 to 940 square feet, each with its own washer and dryer. The highly amenitized apartment community features a two pools and spas, a clubhouse, a fitness center, tennis and basketball courts, playground and pet park.