Santa Barbara, California – Published 3/11/2014
Santa Barbara News-Press
Santa Barbara News-Press: Santa Barbara apartment sale sets record
By Steve Sinovic, News-Press Staff Writer
|Harbor Heights Manor, which sits close to the SBCC campus, was sold to a Santa Barbara buyer in January for $33 million COURTESY PHOTO
A Santa Barbara investor paid a record price to buy the Harbor Heights Manor apartment complex, which sits adjacent to the SBCC campus.
The 97-unit property at 801 Cliff Drive changed hands in January for $33 million, according to the commercial real estate firm that handled the transaction.
Brokers Steve Golis and Brian Johnson with Radius Commercial Real Estate & Investments represented both the buyer and the sellers – the Schulte family, who are described as long-time Santa Barbara residents.
Harbor Heights had not been sold since it was built in 1971.
It was the largest sale of a multifamily property ever recorded in the city of Santa Barbara, and the largest in the South Coast since the Tropicana Gardens in Isla Vista sold for $64.5 million in 2010.
Harbor Heights went on the market last August and quickly garnered strong interest, resulting in more than a dozen offers from prospective buyers around the country, according to Radius.
The winning bidder, a local investor who was not named, entered into contract above asking price with no contingencies, according to Mr. Golis.
“Everything about this offering was desirable: the market, the location, the quality of property,” Mr. Golis said. “The existing market fundamentals for apartments continue to be extremely attractive to investors.”
One reason continues to be the drawing power of UCSB and SBCC.
“Our vacancy for rental properties is one of the lowest in the country, just below 1 percent,” Mr. Golis said. “This adds up to incredible opportunity for substantial return on long-term investments in the area.
“The buyer also understands the long-term value of this property and saw this as an incredible opportunity to own a piece of real estate that is hard to duplicate in our area.”
The new landlord plans to upgrade the apartments.