Hometown appoints CBRE to sell $110m eastern seaboard portfolio

CBRE has been appointed to sell more than $110 million in eastern seaboard properties on behalf of Hometown Australia Communities – the country’s largest owner/operator of residential land lease communities (RLLCs). 

The sale follows Hometown’s October 2018 acquisition of the previously publicly listed Gateway Lifestyle Group.

Gateway assets that were identified as non-core for Hometown are included in the sale campaign, which is being steered by CBRE Hotels Sydney Director Andrew Jackson.

Situated in popular regional tourism / retirement destinations, including the Tweed Coast (NSW), Lakes Entrance (VIC) and the NSW mid-north coast, the properties are to be offered for sale either individually or in one line via an Expressions of Interest campaign.

Mr Jackson said he anticipated strong buyer interest from a diverse audience, with one of the former Gateway assets – greenfield site at Yarrawonga in Victoria – having already sold ahead of the portfolio campaign for a 30% premium to the Gateway acquisition price. 

“We expect interest from local private buyers through to listed Real Estate Investment Trusts, which had been increasingly active in the sector in recent years, Mr Jackson said.

“There is a wide geographic spread and a diverse range of assets being offered, so we expect to receive significant interest in each property. There is a cross-over between the permanent RLLC sector and the traditional tourist / caravan park market so many of the assets will be of equal interest to players from each of these sectors.”

Mr Jackson noted that there had been a significant increase in activity involving overseas-based institutions, either entering or increasing their exposure to the Australian hotel and leisure market in 2018.

“While transactional activity in 2019 has been somewhat subdued, this can be attributed more to a lack of available stock than any waning in investor interest or sentiment,” Mr Jackson said. 

The Hometown portfolio includes several greenfield, development approved RLLC sites that are expected to appeal to participants in the sector seeking to mitigate planning risk by acquiring sites with approvals in place.

Hometown Australia Communities is a subsidiary of Chicago-headquartered Hometown America Communities, which owns and manages assets of more than $US3 billion ($4.2 billion) in the US. The company currently owns and operates around 60 communities in Australia valued in excess of $1bn.

Expressions of interest in the portfolio close 20 November 2019. 

The properties being offered are in the following locations:

• Old Bar, NSW (Greenfield)
• Evans Head, NSW (Greenfield)
• Ballarat, VIC
• Lakes Entrance, VIC
• Sundown Villas, ACT 
• Myola, NSW
• Manning Point, NSW
• North Haven, NSW
• Casino, NSW
• Tweed (Shores), NSW
• Tweed (Chinderah), NSW