United Way of King County Headquarters

Procuring a 4-story historic structure that promotes United Way’s continuing vision.

Applied Expertise
Brokerage/Transaction Advisory  •  Financial Analysis  •  Real Estate Tax Law

United Way of King County was facing the prospect of a $3 million seismic upgrade to its home of 46 years in downtown Seattle’s 10-story Lowman Building.  After determining that the high cost of rehabilitating a building that no longer met its needs was not feasible, the group decided to buy and renovate a safer building with a more efficient floor plan.

Mann and his team found a buyer for the Lowman Building that converted the structure to affordable housing using tax exempt bond financing. Meanwhile, the principals from Martin Smith, Inc., a family run real estate company with deep roots in the region and commitment to the city of Seattle, presented a property of its own in the historic building at Second and Columbia Street. Together, the two teams devised a transaction structure that created a $1.2 million discount for United of Way King County while enabling the seller to utilize United Way’s 501(c)3 status to get a significant tax-off write off.

United Way of King County’s former headquarters spread 45,000 square feet over 10 floors, while the new headquarters had 46,000 square feet on four and made it possible for the agency to seamlessly conduct business in a more efficient building at a central location. The 4-story historic structure they acquired from Martin Smith, Inc., a former bank, conveyed a sense of permanence, further solidifying United Way of King County’s brand as the community safety net.