Starlight buys a portfolio of eight apartment buildings

Toronto’s Starlight Investments has made another major investment plunge into the capital region’s property market by buying a portfolio of eight rental apartment buildings with more than 500 units in all.

“Victoria offers great accessibility and a wide range of job opportunities, coupled with the surrounding natural environment, warm summers, mild winters and a high quality of life — people from around the world choose to make Victoria their home,” Daniel Drimmer, Starlight president and chief executive, said in a statement.

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Starlight said its new holdings are within easy reach to public transit, public parks, green spaces, and retail and restaurants.

While its new acquisitions are rental buildings, which will be managed by Devon Properties, Starlight is also planning a major mixed-use redevelopment in the Harris Green area.

The total value of the rental building package is confidential but is “significant in the Victoria market,” Bev Highton of NAI B.C., which had the portfolio listing, said Friday.

It attracted interest from large property firms similar to Starlight, public and private real estate investment trusts and private individuals, he said.

“Ultimately there was a significant number of offers,” he said.

It’s costly to put up new projects, given today’s land prices and increasing construction and other costs. “So there is a certain economy in buying an existing, well-maintained building that has a good rental history,” Highton said.

“When a portfolio of some size is presented to the market it attracts a very wide range of interested parties,” Highton said.

The sale closed this week, said Ross Marshall, senior vice president of the investment properties group at CBRE, acting for Starlight, “This was a great opportunity to add some buildings to their portfolio.”

These are “great buildings in great locations,” he said.

The properties are:

- 948 Esquimalt Rd., a five-storey building with 136 units ranging from bachelor suites to three-bedroom.

- 980 Wordsley St., a five-storey building with 65 one-and two-bedroom units.

- 1035 Pendergast St., a four-storey building of 57 units with bachelor and one-and two-bedroom suites.

- 1030 Pendergrast St., a four-storey building with 57 units made up of bachelor suites and one-and two-bedroom units.

- 3185 Tillicum Rd. and 275 Burnside Rd. The Tillicum Road building is five storeys with 60 units consisting of bachelor suites, one bedrooms and three bedroom units. The Burnside Road building is six storeys with 44 units. It has bachelor suites, plus one-bedroom, two-bedroom, and three-bedroom units.

- 3255 Quadra St., the three-storey building has 31 units with bachelors suites and one-and two-bedroom units.

- 1126 Rockland Ave. The four-storey building has 35 units, with bachelor suites and one-bedroom units.

All buildings will be managed by Devon Properties.

cjwilson@timescolonist.com

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