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Unique investment structure helps REIT break into Florida apartment market

With the purchase of a 260-unit Ruskin complex, Virginia-based Bonaventure expands into the state.

A Virginia development, construction and property management firm has bought the Shadetree Apartments in Ruskin for an undisclosed amount.
A Virginia development, construction and property management firm has bought the Shadetree Apartments in Ruskin for an undisclosed amount.
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A Virginia-based Real Estate Investment Trust has moved into the Tampa Bay market with the purchase of an apartment complex in Ruskin.

Bonaventure, through an affiliated REI, bought the 260-unit Shadetree Apartments off of 19th Ave. NE near Interstate 75, according to a statement.

The purchase of the Ruskin apartment community was one of the three that Bonaventure announced Tuesday. The other two are in its home state, the Cedar Broad Apartments in Richmond and East Beach Marina in Norfolk.

The company did not disclose the sale price and public records have not been updated. In an email, a company spokesperson said “Bonaventure will not be disclosing purchase price(s).”

But in the statement announcing the the purchase of Shadetree and the two Virginia complexes, the company called the deals UPREIT transactions.

According to NASDAQ, an UPREIT is an umbrella partnership “that REITs use to let property owners contribute their real estate property in exchange for operating partnership units that can be converted into REIT shares.”

The exchange says UPREITs are similar to 1031 exchanges in that they allow the property owners to avoid capital gain taxes on appreciated real estate.

“UPREIT transactions like these continue to serve an important purpose for property owners who are seeking long-term tax efficient compounding growth and greater after-tax returns,” Bonaventure’s founder and CEO Dwight Dunton says in the statement. “As a company, we will continue to pursue acquisition and development opportunities where we believe we can achieve the best risk-adjusted returns.”

Shadetree features one-, two- and three-bedroom units ranging from 800 square feet to 1,527 square feet. The starting price for a one-bedroom on the complex’s website was $1,807 on March 28. Two bedroom units ranged in price from $2,002 to $2,750. Prices for the three bedrooms were not listed.

Bonaventureis based in Alexandria, a Virginia suburb of Washington, D.C. The development, construction and property management company has $1.5 billion in assets under management and manages over 6,000 apartment units across 32 communities in the Mid-Atlantic and Southeast, though mostly in Virginia.



Louis Llovio

Louis Llovio is the commercial real estate editor at the Business Observer. Before going to work at the Observer, the longtime business writer worked at the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Maryland Daily Record and for the Baltimore Sun Media Group. He lives in Tampa.

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