Upside Investments Acquires 669 Apartment Units in LA

Upside Investments has acquired Crenshaw Village Apartments, a 669-unit multifamily property in Los Angeles, for $60 million.
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Los Angeles—Upside Investments has acquired Crenshaw Village Apartments, a 669-unit multifamily property in Los Angeles, for $60 million. The property is a Class B/C asset in the working-class neighborhood of Baldwin Hills, between Downtown Los Angeles and Culver City.

The surrounding area has seen various kinds of investment recently, including the new Expo Line, which opened last year and will be extended in 2015; the newly announced Kaiser Hospital; and the planned expansion of the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza. Gary Simons, president of Upside Investments, noted that these attributes were a major factor in the decision to acquire the asset.

Value-add was another reason for the deal. The property was built in 1948 and has undergone only minor renovations since then. Its age and condition provides significant room for value-add improvements by the buyer, according to George Smith Partners managing director Steve Bram, whose firm arranged $42.5 million in the financing for the deal.

Upside Investments hasn’t finalized its renovation plans for the property, but current plans include the addition of new appliances and laundry facilities, additional parking, as well as updates to the landscaping. Crenshaw Village Apartments consists of 65 buildings on 40 separate parcels of land, totaling 25 acres. It includes studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom floor plans.

Ron Harris, executive vice president of Investments at Institutional Property Advisors (IPA), along with IPA associate director Paul Darrow and associate Michael DiSimone, represented both the buyer as well as the seller, a private investor, in the acquisition. The financing was provided from a George Smith Partner’s correspondent FNMA lender and was structured to allow the sale of five other assets owned by Upside within six months, and transferring the tax basis to the newly acquired property.