Wednesday, March 21 , 2018, 8:39 am | Light Rain 55º


Nasif Hicks Harris & Co. Moves to Downtown La Torre Building

In its first move in 30 years, the accounting firm leases 10,507 square feet at 104 W. Anapamu St.

One of Santa Barbara’s most prominent accounting firms has found a new location downtown. Nasif Hicks Harris & Co., a firm that has served more than 1,000 local businesses since it was established in 1976, leased 10,507 square feet of office space in the La Torre building at 104 W. Anapamu St.

It is the second-largest office lease on the South Coast in 2010. Francois DeJohn and Greg Bartholomew of Hayes Commercial Group represented Nasif Hicks Harris & Co., and Paul Gamberdella and Bob Tuler of Radius Group represented the lessor.

Nasif, Hicks, Harris & Co. is a full-service accounting firm with about 35 employees providing tax, audit attestation, estate planning, consulting services and litigation support to more than 2,000 clients. Firm specialties include serving the high-tech industry, construction and real estate clients, other professional firms, and a variety of high net-worth individuals. The firm serves as its clients’ chief financial officer, striving to minimize taxes and maximize wealth accumulation for clients and their families.

In the end, the move was years in the making. For the past 30 years, Nasif Hicks Harris & Co. has been located at 1111 Garden St., a 4,500-square-foot building owned by the firm.

About five years ago, identifying a need for more space for its rapidly growing business, the company approached DeJohn to begin looking for a new location. It was looking for 7,000 to 10,000 square feet of office space with better parking for employees and better access for clients — all in a downtown location. However, spaces meeting that requirement rarely come on the market in downtown Santa Barbara. In the past five years, only 14 office spaces larger than 7,000 square feet have been leased in downtown Santa Barbara, none of which was a good fit for Nasif Hicks Harris & Co.

Early this year, conditions in the market created an opportunity for the firm. First, the recession brought lease rates down, which made moving into a larger space more cost effective. Second, the consolidation in the financial services industry caused a shuffling of larger office spaces downtown.

When Wachovia Securities vacated its 10,507-square-foot space at 104 W. Anapamu St.,, Hayes Commercial Group negotiated a new home for Nasif Hicks Harris & Co.

The new location offers room to expand through client referrals and acquisitions, more ability to attract and retain talented CPAs, ample parking and access for clients, and better proximity to State Street.

— Ted Hoagland is the marketing manager for Hayes Commercial Group.

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