The closings keep coming from Blueprint Healthcare Real Estate Advisors, as the firm has announced a series of acquisitions in the last couple weeks of the year, mainly for publicly-traded REIT clients. Ben Firestone, Michael Segal, Alex Florea and Scott Frazier first teamed up to sell an assisted living/memory care community in Escondido, California (an affluent suburb of San Diego). Previously owned by an LLC affiliated with Ventas, the community was originally built in 1986 and expanded with a new independent living building in 2006. Initially, the community offered a full spectrum of care from independent living to skilled nursing. However, the new IL building was converted to high-acuity assisted living, and several corporate-level changes led to a decline in operations, culminating in the closure of the skilled nursing wing as new management decided to focus on lower acuity. At the time of the sale, there were 185 operating units.
A locally based and privately held real estate investment firm with experience repurposing senior care properties bought the community and has plans to both reconvert the high-acuity AL units back to independent living and convert the SNF wing to additional memory care. With high occupancies and strong rental rates in the local market, the buyer has the chance to add significant value to the property.
Then, Messrs. Firestone and Segal were joined by Steve Thomes and Alex Florea to sell a value-add senior living community in Stratford, Connecticut (Fairfield County). Also previously owned by Ventas, this property was developed in 1999 with 76 assisted living and 24 memory care units. Atria Senior Living was the operator, and although the high-income area sees average occupancy for assisted living top 98%, the community suffered from new competitors offering steep discounts and from significant leadership turnover. Rents stayed relatively constant, but occupancy and operating performance steadily declined, prompting the sale. Woodbine Senior Living, which earlier this year acquired a 48-unit assisted living community in nearby Danbury, Connecticut, ended up as the buyer, paying an undisclosed sum. We know just how profitable senior living communities can be in Fairfield County, so even a modest turnaround in occupancy can make for one happy buyer.