Mormon church’s investment arm drops $133M for Plantation apartment building, as multifamily deals soar

Sellers had listed property in March, asking $150M

PGIM, Stiles Sell Rentals to Mormon Church’s Property Reserve

From left: Property Reserve CEO Ashley Powell (buyer); PGIM Real Estate co-CEOs Cathy Marcus and Raimondo Amabile (sellers); Stiles CEO Kenneth Stiles; the Ellsworth apartment building at 1301 Southwest 80th Terrace in Plantation (Getty, PGIM Real Estate, Stiles, LinkedIn, The Ellsworth)

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ commercial real estate investment arm paid $133 million for a 315-unit apartment building in Plantation. The purchase comes as South Florida multifamily sales are soaring, despite elevated interest rates and other economic headwinds. 

Property Reserve, which invests the church’s reserve funds, bought the eight-story Ellsworth at 1301 Southwest 80th Terrace from the property’s developers, Fort Lauderdale-based Stiles and Newark, New Jersey-based PGIM Real Estate, according to records and real estate database Vizzda. 

The purchase breaks down to $422,222 per unit.

Completed last year on a 4.3-acre site, Ellsworth consists of one- to three-bedroom apartments, with monthly rents ranging from $2,915 to $4,234, according to the property’s website. Lease terms range from a year to 15 months. 

Stiles and PGIM listed the building in March, with an asking price of roughly $150 million. Ellsworth was 93 percent leased at the time. 

The building is adjacent to Temple Kol Ami Emanu-El, which sold the development site to the developers in 2021 for $5.4 million

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Stiles is a family-owned real estate development and investment firm, which has completed more than 52 million square feet of projects across the Southeast U.S., according to its website. It’s led by CEO Kenneth Stiles. 

PGIM Real Estate, which had $210 billion of assets under management and administration as of March, is led by co-CEOs Cathy Marcus and Raimondo Amabile. PGIM Real Estate is the global investment division of PGIM, which is the asset management arm of Prudential Financial. 

PGIM Real Estate has been selling off South Florida apartment properties since last year. Last summer, it sold the 293-unit Atlantic Preserve at 10900 Northwest 17th Street in Plantation for $86 million

Property Reserve, led by CEO Ashley Powell, bought the majority of the 1.3 million-square-foot Beacon Logistics Park campus on the northeast corner of Northwest 107th Avenue and Northwest 145th Place in Hialeah for $174.3 million in December. The purchase included Buildings A, B, E and F, with developers Codina Partners and Affinius Capital planning to sell Buildings C and D to Property Reserve once they are completed. 

Property Reserve is based in Salt Lake City, Utah. Separate from Property Reserve, the church has faced criticism over its limited public disclosure requirements on the church’s finances and its investment portfolio. Last year, the church and its investment portfolio manager, Ensign Peak Advisors, settled the Securities and Exchange Commission’s claims that the church’s investment portfolio was obscured through limited liability companies, The Wall Street Journal reported. The church and Ensign, which settled for $1 million and $4 million, respectively, neither admitted nor denied wrongdoing in the settlement. 

South Florida is experiencing an uptick in multifamily deals this summer, despite a slowdown in demand from tenants and a plateauing of rents. Brookfield just dropped $107.5 million for the 444-unit Turtle Cove complex at 825 Cotton Bay Drive East in unincorporated Palm Beach County. Also this month, Mesirow paid $89.4 million for the 325-unit Retreat at Sawgrass Village complex at 3001 Northwest 130th Terrace in Sunrise.  

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