Fickett Towers

Van Nuys, CA

Construction Type: 12 story concrete tower

Tenant Mix: low income elderly

Background

This property was purchased in 2012 from a local faith based non-profit in Los Angeles. The seller was a one-off HUD owner and wanted to get out of the real estate business. The building had been damaged during the Northridge earthquake and was fixed with the help of a HUD HELP loan. Rents were below market and the Non-Profit had previously tried to sell the building on several occasions unsuccessfully due to HUD’s policy of not allowing non-profits to take sales proceeds. The sales transaction complexities included multiple HUD approvals and waivers including non-profit sales proceed waivers, rent increases, HAP Assignments, and commitment to building renovations. This was the first transaction in the country to utilize new HUD non-profit sales proceed procedure.

Site Challenges

This property had been run by a local non-profit since its construction and although it had aged fairly well, it was in need of substantial upgrades. In conjunction with the various HUD approvals needed to purchase this building and rent increase, we successfully completed a 4% bond transaction to better fund the needed repairs. During a tenant in place rehabilitation, we renovated all interior unit components including bathroom vanities, kitchen cabinets and countertops, new energy efficient appliances, carpet, paint, and light fixtures. We also replaced the first floor lateral plumbing, the emergency generator and the chiller. We were able to obtain weatherization money and support from both the LADWP (rebates and other incentive programs) and Energy Upgrade CA via participation in the Los Angeles County Multifamily Whole Building Pilot Program. By leveraging multiple financing resources, government programs and our own equity, we will have fully refurbished this property and achieved over a 10% reduction in energy use.

Community Support

Our greatest liaisons for the success of this property have been the US Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Los Angeles Housing Department, Los Angeles Councilman Cardenas, Los Angeles Mayor Villaraigosa, LADWP and Energy Upgrade CA. Supportive Services In 2012 we were awarded a service coordinator grant that would provide two service coordinators to the residents of Fickett Towers. These Service Coordinators will help elderly residents age in place and provide various other resident functions and services.