Mosaic cancels its other West Seattle condo conversion


Gee whiz, leave the house/computer for a couple hours and look what happens – for the second time today, Mosaic Homes announces it’s canceling a West Seattle condo conversion (thanks to everyone who e-mailed us about this; we also got our own e-mail, above, since we were on the mailing list). As we’ve reported previously, it’s been trying like mad to sell “Strata on California,” formerly the Graham Street Apartments at California/Graham north of Morgan Junction, but apparently not doing so well, hence the announcement above that Strata will be rented out. (And remember, as also reported here, the much-marketed West Water condo conversion less than a mile south is already resorting to rentals.)

14 Replies to "Mosaic cancels its other West Seattle condo conversion"

  • Kayleigh November 29, 2007 (5:54 pm)

    So if they weren’t selling well, why didn’t they just drop the prices? Why go back to rentals?

  • former GSR November 29, 2007 (6:08 pm)

    So kind of them to kick the former residents out!

  • CandrewB November 29, 2007 (6:46 pm)

    Well, thanks for cleaning them up a bit at least… Maybe you could have better luck making our neighbors house a condo.

  • BB November 29, 2007 (7:02 pm)

    Not a big fan of the condo-conversion move and/or townhomes.

    But, I’ll tell you what… It’s time to buy (esp. given the WA 1st time buyer programs).

    I know it’s easy to be skeptical of a REALTOR but if it makes sense for you to buy, don’t let this market pass you bye.

    I am always happy to help.. There are some SMART deals out there (but please, RESEARCH your purchase).

  • Sue November 29, 2007 (8:53 pm)

    Kayleigh, my personal opinion on why they’re not offering them for sale cheaper rather than reverting to rentals is that there are issues with passing inspections. Here’s the latest DPD listing on Graham Street: and on West Ridge Park:
    Unless I’m not understanding the terminology correctly, I’d assume that “passed partial compliance” is not synonymous with “passed.” I knew something was up with Strata/Graham when I got the email from Gables/WRP today that said they weren’t converting, but they had some nice condo-quality apartments to rent. My first thought was, why not tell these potential buyers to go to Strata instead? So I wasn’t surprised to hear about Strata’s demise.

  • Kayleigh November 30, 2007 (5:34 am)

    Sue if that’s the case, wouldn’t it be better to just fix whatever is wrong so they pass? (I’m asking here rather than arguing; I just don’t get it.) And, what happens to the people that already bought a unit–are their sales cancelled or do they get to stay?

    I’m trying to understand the condo market, because we will likely buy one next year, though probably not in West Seattle.

  • Sue November 30, 2007 (6:53 am)

    Kayleigh, perhaps it’s too pricey to do so and still make a good profit. The pre-condo inspection reports on WRP (that they gave us with right of first refusal) looks as if it said that when they were originally built there were some issues that were not entirely up to 1980s building codes for apartments (which makes me ask the question of, if this is true, how did they pass to become apartments?). If that’s the case, how on earth would they rectify that to be up to 2007 codes for condos?
    I’ve wondered too what happens to any potential buyers. If we wanted our unit, we would’ve had to put $5,000 down within 60 days of getting the notice. Would we have received our $5,000 back? I’m sure it’s been spent already.
    There was a rumor when I was there that 2 tenants who wanted to buy were living in the units they wanted to use as the office and model and that they were offering them money as a buy-out, or offering to let them buy it, and then WRP would pay top-dollar rent on it to them for 2 years while they used it. If that’s true, I wonder what happened with that, whether they lost a lot of money to make someone move out early.

  • nunya November 30, 2007 (6:03 pm)

    Yes you would have recieved your $5000 back, if it was actually earnest money. This company paid top dollar for the units and with the firming up of the rental market and better superficial condition of the units they will get a better return on their investment by renting at higher prices. With these projects backing out I would expect Westwater to stay as a conversion; all of a sudden there is less competition for the units. I think that the company that purchased Strata and WRP is a Canadian company and they could also benefit if and when the dollar improves.

  • Claire November 30, 2007 (7:01 pm)

    I live down the street from Strata and pass it almost daily walking down to Thriftway. I would hardly call them condo quality. As a matter of fact you simply must check out the barn yard wire behind wood painted with black primer along the side walk side and the wire box o rocks that borders the drive into the parking lot. Its to die for [sarcasm]. I personaly think what they did to the residents was smarmy at best. The team they used is not my idea of professional ether. When they ripped out a bunch of wood they dumped it on the public side walk with produding nails in some pieces for anyone to step on. There was one very small sign warning of construction and nothing else. They did apartment quality clean up on the inside it looks like and wanted to sell it as condo quality. Opportunism at its best.

  • Kayleigh December 1, 2007 (4:52 am)

    Thanks, everyone, for the info. It’s silly to me to pay that much to “rent” granite countertops!

    This whole thing really bothers me, especially that legally, the owners got away with displacing so many people.

    Our leaders have been asleep at the wheel in terms of protecting low and middle-income renters in this city.

  • Former Graham Street Resident With Mixed Feelings December 1, 2007 (3:47 pm)

    So when I first read this I was a bit upset. Angry really. We moved there back in March, forced out at the end of Aug for this condo conversion. Well, this was only after they tried to offer me my one bed unit @ 249k…oh and that was discounted 20k mind you. So I am angry and laughing at the same time. So I’d imagine in order to pay for the lovely granite counter tops and stack washer n’ driers in the 700sqft spaces we’re talking 950$ a month for someone to rent? Kudos guys, kudos to you Mosaic.

  • former GSR December 3, 2007 (1:41 pm)

    I was told during the whole displacement and while being forced to live at Graham Street because of a lease during the condo conversion that tenants have virtually no rights and are not protected by the city. There were no violations or codes being broken because there are no laws for these developers to break in a condo conversion! I came home to my doors being blocked, nails all over the parking lot, no privacy, and rude management!

  • Why ask why? December 7, 2007 (7:47 pm)

    GSR, what they told you wasn’t true. You had rights under the Landlord-Tenant Act and if you kept good records you can sue them especially in Small Claims Court. But unfortunately what you said about the City is TRUE. The City currently is NOT enforcing tenant’s rights in condo conversions. Someday with enough any tenants forcing the issue, they will have too. I just wish I could figure out how to mobilize a tenants movement in this regard!

  • Deeno December 19, 2007 (2:30 am)

    It’s really a shame when a developer can’t sell the units for which they’ve displaced so many people. I suggest we take up a collection for the Strata people and send it along to them for the holidays. I’m not much of an organizer, so will just rely on each of us to do this on our own.

    It would go a long way in showing our appreciation for the efforts they went through in uplifting so many people’s lives. To me, this structure has one of the nicest fences in West Seattle and will probably win some design awards.

    I think the location of being right across the street from Shortstop and Chuck and Sally’s really drove the price out of reach for many, maybe a reason why they couldn’t sell these ‘top notch’ units.

Sorry, comment time is over.