SAN FRANCISCO-Nearly four-dozen properties in the state being vacated by State Farm Automobile Insurance Co. are being acquired in bulk and sold off in smaller chunks by Newport Capital Advisors. The Irvine, CA-based company has hired Grubb & Ellis’ corporate services group to flip the 44 properties, which are spread evenly between Northern California to San Diego. Including some of the development potential, Newport values the portfolio at $100 million.

The 44 assets consist of 35 buildings ranging in size from 8,500 sf to 30,000 sf and nine parcels of vacant land totaling about 25 acres. The existing structures total 545,000 sf and are primarily single or two-story office buildings the insurance company had used as claims offices. The available land sites are also throughout California with parcel sizes that range from approximately 1.5 to four acres.

Grubb & Ellis’ corporate services group director and disposition team leader Bob O’Neill tells that the asking prices range from $500,000 for some of the small land parcels to $6.5 million for some of larger buildings. “They are typically flex-type buildings, some tilt and some brick,” says O’Neill. “The goal is to sell them off individually or in small bundles.”

One of the selling points is that the sites generally have a very low building to land coverage ratio, providing expansion capability and a current high parking ratio to all potential users or investors. O’Neill says there already are a number of different interested buyers, ranging from owner-users to 1031 Exchange groups and value-added investors and developers.

“We’ve already got a number under contract,” says O’Neill, who is handling the dispositions with Grubb & Ellis senior vice president Mark Larson and executive vice president Rick Liebermann. “The properties will be sold off over the next nine to 12 months.”

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