A California real estate private equity group purchased the Webster Court senior living complex in downtown Kent with plans to make improvements to the facility. COURTESY PHOTO, PEF Advisors

A California real estate private equity group purchased the Webster Court senior living complex in downtown Kent with plans to make improvements to the facility. COURTESY PHOTO, PEF Advisors

California real estate group buys Webster Court apartments in Kent

PEF Advisors plans to spend $1.2 million on improvements to downtown senior living complex

California-based Preservation Equity Fund Advisors (PEF Advisors) has bought the 92-unit Webster Court senior living apartments in downtown Kent.

PEF Advisors is a real estate private equity group focused on preserving existing affordable housing in high-cost markets, according to its April 5 press release about the purchase. The complex, 309 Fifth Ave. S., primarily houses people ages 55 and older and people with disabilities.

The group bought the four-story development in March and has budgeted approximately $1.2 million ($12,915 per unit) to address deferred maintenance, improve curb appeal, and elevate the quality of housing and competitiveness of the property, according to the press release.

Property amenities available to residents include a community room, elevator, gated access, four on-site laundry facilities, a courtyard, a BBQ and picnic area and a leasing office. Resident parking consists of 38 uncovered spaces. All 92 apartment units are one-bedrooms and average 458 square feet. Unit amenities include patios in select units, and come furnished with refrigerators and self-cleaning ovens.

As of March 2023, the property was 88% occupied, with occupancy numbers expected to rise as property improvements are completed.

“This is the second property that we’ve acquired in this area, so we know this market and asset type well,” said Ann Caruana, president and chief investments officer at PEF Advisors. “In March 2021, we acquired Rainier Vista (in Pacific), another senior housing development just 15 minutes away from Webster Court which is 97% occupied. With the planned improvements and high walkability of Webster Court, we believe it can stabilize within a year and provide high-quality affordable housing for seniors.”

Webster Court was originally built in 1994 with tax credits from the Washington State Housing Finance Commission and is governed by a Low Income Housing Tax Credits Land Use Restrictive Agreement, which restricts 24 units at 35% Area Median Income (AMI) and 66 units at 60% AMI.

“The (agreement) extended-use period ends in 2030 which positions our hold period to align perfectly with an exit that can identify a developer or nonprofit to keep the property affordable,” Caruana said. “With the property being at-risk of losing its affordability in seven years, we anticipate that there will be more options available to keep it in the low-income housing tax credit program which is our ultimate goal.”

PEF Advisors is an affiliate of the WNC & Associates, Inc., of Irvine, California, family of companies with access to its more than 51 years experience in acquiring more than 1,700 properties representing $17 billion in affordable housing nationwide, including through tax credit and/or preservation equity strategies, according to the press release.

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