$38,600,000 Limited Recourse, Cash Neutral Mid-Construction Financing for a 122-Unit Multifamily; Santa Rosa Beach, FL
July 14, 2021
George Smith Partners successfully arranged a $38,600,000 mid-construction refinance loan for a multifamily project in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida. The limited-recourse loan refinanced out the existing debt and provided additional proceeds to complete the development and flexibility to explore a condo sell out. The 122-unit Project will include state-of-the-art facilities, including a general store, a fully equipped restaurant, fitness center for guests, and a workspace. The Project is expected to receive certificate of occupancy by September 2021.
GSP was retained when the Project was 70% complete with an expected certificate of occupancy by September 2021. Since the Project began in 2019, nearly all the land in the area had been purchased by developers at a higher basis and condos began to sell at higher than $500/psf. The Sponsors seized the opportunity to add additional equity, bringing the Project to condo-specifications and the ability to sell out at a higher valuation. GSP canvassed a broad range of lenders with long-standing relationships and fielded multiple proposals. GSP worked with the Sponsor to find a lender that reached a higher proceeds level and provided the flexibility to lease up the Property as multifamily, sell units as condos or a mix of the two.
June 23, 2021
George Smith Partners successfully placed $10,000,000 of joint venture equity for the construction of a 134-unit workforce housing development in a tertiary Mountain State market. There is considerable demand due to the quality of life and a D1-university in close proximity. GSP structured a 90/10 co-invest with an out of state developer with a robust pipeline.
Though guided to an expeditious close, the equity raise faced a few challenges. GSP brought the deal to market early in COVID when the economic ramifications of stay-at-home policies were uncertain. Additionally, the Project’s location in a tertiary market with only 50,000 people led to multiple groups being hesitant to deploy capital. However, the effects from COVID and the state’s pro-business economic policies eventually were shown to be a positive factor in multifamily demand.
$14,750,000 Cash-Out Construction Loan for an 80% completed Single Family Residence; Los Angeles, CA
May 26, 2021
George Smith Partners successfully placed $14,750,000 in a cash-out construction loan for the completion of a high-end luxury home in Los Angeles, California. The loan retired a higher interest rate, funded an interest reserve account, and provided additional proceeds to fund the remaining budget of the development. The nineteen-month loan term was structured to provide the Sponsor with time to finish construction, obtain certificate of occupancy and sell the asset. Many lenders were on the fence about lending to the high-end luxury market or did not want to take on the risk of financing a mid-construction project. GSP leveraged its expertise of the Los Angeles market along with its local lender relationships to achieve all the Sponsor’s goals.
Term: 19 months + two six-month extension options
Amortization: Interest Only
Guaranty: Full recourse
Banking Relationship/Deposits: None
- Advisors: Reuven Risch
May 19, 2021
George Smith Partners arranged $56,500,000 in construction financing for the development of a mixed-use coastal infill project in Solana Beach, CA. The mixed-use development features 55,000 square feet of office space, 9,000 square feet of retail and 25 apartment units.
Located just one block from the beach and the Cedros Avenue Design District, the two-story development focused on sustainability will be the largest mixed-use project along Highway 101 in the past three decades. The dearth of comparable projects, especially ones with large office floorplates, presented a unique opportunity.
Amidst a time of market volatility and economic uncertainty, GSP was able to identify capital who not only understood the value of all three components and the subsequent demand but also the ability of the Sponsor to execute on the intended business plan.
$41,100,000 Non-Recourse Stretch Senior Construction Loan for 180 Micro-Unit Multifamily Development; Hollywood, CA
May 12, 2021
George Smith Partners placed a $41,100,000 Non-Recourse, stretch senior construction loan for the ground-up development of a 6-story micro unit/co-living project in Hollywood, California. When complete, the Project will consist of 180 fully furnished, all-inclusive micro units within 49 pods with an average micro unit size of 276 sf. The Project lies in an Opportunity Zone.
Several hurdles presented themselves such as concerns about the newness of the asset class and the availability of direct comparable properties. Also, the Sponsor had already begun excavation & shoring work which created challenges in obtaining full title insurance coverage.
GSP focused on the Project’s per micro unit price rather than a per pod price to get the Lender comfortable with comparable projects. Further attention was given to the Project’s affordability as each micro unit comes fully furnished with an all-inclusive rental rate. GSP also stressed the Project’s unparalleled location, walkability to every major amenity in Los Angeles, the number of local employer hubs, and significant demand drivers from transient tenants looking for fully furnished offerings. GSP worked with the title company to successfully resolve all title insurance challenges that were presented and executing a high-profile marketing campaign to ensure that the capital markets appropriately understood the unique asset type. The process also included structuring and marketing the deal with several different capital stack variations (including a concurrent separate marketing effort for an A/B structure) to find the best financing option for the transaction. These efforts resulted in a successfully expedited process with a close in approximately 45 days from entering application.
April 28, 2021
George Smith Partners arranged $19,550,000 of senior construction financing for a ground-up cold storage facility located in Jurupa Valley, CA. The 125,000 square foot facility will serve as the headquarters for West Coast Cold Storage, a “for rent” cold storage provider focused on providing both refrigerated and frozen space to their Southern California customers. Existing cold storage facilities nationwide have an average age of over 40 years, demonstrating the need for new development within the space. With the sudden increase in online grocery orders and delivery, demand for well-located cold storage space has spiked. This flagship building will feature increased energy efficiencies and provide a variety of racking configurations to accommodate customer needs.
Located two blocks from State Highway 60, the Subject Property offers clients immediate access to the entire Inland Empire and Northern San Diego County. This location is also part of the Port of Los Angeles transportation line that handles 20% of incoming U.S. cargo and feeds all Southern California.
Structured to minimize the Sponsor’s equity investment, the non-recourse loan is sized to 81% of development costs and carries an 18-month term. Minimum interest requirements were negotiated to less than 5.5% of the committed loan amount as cold storage has a much shorter construction timeline when compared to other product types. Origination fees were allocated to post Certificate of Occupancy financing to further reduce the cash equity needed to close.
Origination Fee: 0.50%
Term: 18 Months Initial Term, One 6-Month Extension
Amortization: Interest Only
Prepayment: Subject to Minimum Interest Estimated at 12 Months
Guaranty: Non-Recourse with Completion Guaranty
- Advisors: Patrick O’Donnell
$58,000,000 Life Co. & Preferred Equity Non-Recourse Construction Financing; Culver City Adjacent, CA
April 28, 2021
George Smith Partners successfully closed $58,000,000 in non-recourse construction financing for a seven-story, mixed use development across from Sony Pictures Studios and adjacent to Culver City, CA. The Project features 139 apartment units over 1,969 SF of ground floor retail. The Sponsor received a density bonus thanks to TOC incentives, in exchange for allocating 14 affordable units.
While this is the second U.S. project – the first was also financed by GSP – for a successful international developer, the pool of capital providers was significantly reduced due to the borrowing entity being headquartered in a foreign country. Presenting this deal during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic also presented significant challenges. GSP leveraged its structured financing expertise, lender relationships, strength of the Project and the Culver City market to negotiate the most desirable terms for the Sponsor.
The financings are comprised of $42,000,000 in senior construction debt from a Life Co. lender and $16,000,000 in preferred equity and includes a substantial amount in recap funds to the Sponsor at closing. The term is five years, with interest only payments and no prepayment penalty upon Certificate of Occupancy. The senior note is LIBOR + 390 and the preferred equity investment’s interest will be fully accrued during the entire term, thereby reducing the amount of interest reserve and the Sponsor’s initial cash equity contribution.
$44,500,000 Heavy Bridge Construction Financing to Add Several Uses to an Existing Office and Warehouse; Secondary Market; San Luis Obispo, CA
April 14, 2021
George Smith Partners arranged $44,500,000 for heavy bridge financing in San Louis Obispo, CA to recapitalize and fund construction for additional uses on an existing asset. The completed Project will include five uses including multifamily, warehouse, office, self-storage, and a brewery. This is among the largest private projects actively in development in the local market.
The Sponsor has been very creative in obtaining the highest and best use for the asset in a supply constrained market. Despite challenges facing construction projects in today’s volatile commodity market, GSP was able to secure a capital provider to structure high leverage supported by the strong market and underwriting.
March 31, 2021
George Smith Partners successfully advised on $7,100,000 in joint venture equity financing for a 109-unit build-to-rent and Opportunity Zone transaction in Phoenix, AZ. This single family for rent community will offer one, two and three-bedroom detached homes with upscale furnishings and private yards for most units. This was the first transaction for our Sponsor who is optimistic about the popularity and emerging trend of the build-to-rent niche.
March 31, 2021
George Smith Partners secured a $7,685,000 construction loan for the completion of a development project in Los Angeles, California. The construction project was being fully paid out of pocket and had just finished two levels of subterranean parking. At this point of completion, the Sponsors decided to finance the remaining project costs instead of coming out of pocket the rest of the way. Many lenders didn’t want to finance the Project due to the mid-construction risk and those that did wanted some sort of banking relationship/deposit to come with the Project. GSP secured a capital source that was comfortable with the mid-construction project and didn’t require the Sponsors to bring in any fresh equity nor did they require any banking deposits.
Term: 24 months + two 6-month options to extend
Amortization: Interest Only
Guaranty: Full recourse
- Advisors: Reuven Risch
97% Financing; $39,650,000 Construction Debt and $18,750,000 Equity for 153-Unit Multifamily Opportunity Zone Development; Downtown Sacramento
March 24, 2021
George Smith Partners successfully placed $39,650,000 in construction debt and $18,750,000 in limited partner equity for the ground up construction of an Opportunity Zone multifamily development with ground floor retail in Downtown Sacramento, at the peak of COVID. The challenges included uncertainty regarding COVID during the pre-vaccine period, political uncertainty, an offshore borrower, and California’s tenant friendly policies. Many investors were too cautious to make a commitment in the middle of COVID with no anticipated end in sight. These risks were offset by exceptional sponsorship, a strong market, and a well margined deal.
The 153-unit Project is the first in a series of planned multifamily developments in the region by Anthem Properties Group of Canada. GSP leveraged its expertise and relationships to find a lender to serve the Sponsor and push through an arduous due diligence process to an expeditious closing. GSP helped structure the partnership agreement to best serve Opportunity Zone taxation rules and ensure the most beneficial long-term returns between the Capital Providers and the Sponsor.
$27,180,000 Construction Financing to 74% LTC for a 168-Unit Workforce Housing Project; Saint Louis, MO
March 17, 2021
George Smith Partners successfully placed $27,180,000 (74% LTC) in construction financing to fund the ground-up development of a first-of-its-kind in the market, multi-property, 168-unit workforce housing project in an infill and trendy neighborhood of Saint Louis, Missouri. GSP leveraged its diverse lender relationships to source a construction loan for the unique project that is comprised of six individual buildings ranging from 18-unit (for rent) townhomes to 35-unit apartment buildings. Compounding the Project’s complexity is the requirement to cap rents, for a period of 10 years, on 51% of the units to be affordable for 80% AMI and the remaining 49% of units to be affordable for 100% AMI. Furthermore, although all six buildings are located within a one-block radius of each other, none of the sites are contiguous. The GSP-sourced loan was tailored to meet the needs of both the Sponsor and its equity partner. The equity partner capped construction leverage to 67.5% LTC, however GSP structured the loan to include a $2,500,000 earnout, which is sized to 74% LTC. GSP and the Sponsor were ultimately successful in obtaining approval from the equity partner for the higher-leverage earnout which is released upon 90% occupancy and a 1.25x DSCR on T-3 income.
Term: 48 months
Amortization: 30-months interest only; 30-year amortization during months 31-39; 27.5-year amortization thereafter
Prepayment: None; open in whole or in part at any time
Guaranty: Full repayment guarantee that burns down to a 50% repayment guarantee upon certificate of occupancy
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