Student housing operator buys apartment portfolio near USC

Stuho paid a total of $46M for the 193 units, which add to the company’s presence near the school

TRD LOS ANGELES /
Nov.November 06, 2019 12:06 PM
A building in the property portfolio
A building in the property portfolio

One of Los Angeles’ largest privately-held student housing operators paid $46 million for a portfolio of 193 apartment units near the University of Southern California’s main campus, The Real Deal has learned.

Stuho paid slightly above the $44.5 million asking price the “Nupac Portfolio” hit the market for in mid-September. Stuho plans to make improvements to the aging properties, according to company founder Paras Bhakta.

The seller was the trust of real estate investor Irvin Kanthak, who died in March.

Kanthak, who graduated from USC, assembled the portfolio in the early 1990s within a few miles of the school. Stuho already has a sizable presence in the area, with 53 apartment buildings and a total of 750 total units.

A building in the property portfolio
A building in the property portfolio

Ernie Carswell, Rick Tyberg and Sam Shakerchi of Douglas Elliman represented the buyer and the seller on the deal. Sean Rosenzweig and Tony Azzi of Marcus & Millichap also represented the Kanthak trust.

Hankey Capital provided bridge financing.

Stuho beat out competing bids from 10 other property managers in the region, Shakerchi said. The acquisition is one of Stuho’s largest. Four years ago, the company paid $39 million for a six-building portfolio with a total of 103 units, also near USC.

Bhakta called the Nupac Portfolio in line with other Stuho properties in the area because of their proximity to the main USC campus. The portfolio includes 154 units around USC, and another 39 units on Hoover Street in Koreatown.

A building in the property portfolio
A building in the property portfolio

Most of the buildings were built before 1950 with rents far below market rate, according to listing materials.

In L.A., student housing has become an increasingly attractive option for real estate investors, with students tending to pay premium rates for shared spaces. Earlier this year, developer Prime Place filed plans for a 129-unit complex at 1320 W. Jefferson Boulevard, just west of the USC campus. Ventus Group is also working on its $300 million mixed-use complex, dubbed the Fig, in the area. That’s slated to bring 200 units of student housing, among other apartments and retail.


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