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Rhys W. Hefta

Fax +1.206.623.7022
Rhys Hefta is a partner in the Seattle office. Rhys advises clients on purchases, sales and financing of real estate assets, including office, hospitality, retail,  multifamily and assisted living properties. His finance experience includes a wide range of financing structures, including commercial mortgage backed securities, senior and subordinate notes, second mortgage and mezzanine debt and preferred equity. He has represented commercial real estate lenders ranging from Wall Street investment banks, governmental agencies, life insurance companies, foreign lending institutions and their domestic branches and other institutional lenders in all aspects of loan originations, structuring, purchases and sales, securitization and syndications, as well as workouts and restructurings. He has experience in both construction and permanent financing as well as distressed debt financing.

Rhys has represented clients in sophisticated joint venture transactions. He also has experience in commercial leasing, as well as representing owners in the negotiation of asset and property management agreements and franchise agreements.

Professional Background

After several years of developing his practice in New York with another leading international law firm, Mr. Hefta joined the Seattle office of K&L Gates in 2010.


  • Named Super Lawyers - Rising Star 2016

Professional/Civic Activities

  • WSBA Real Property Probate and Trust Quarterly Newsletter, Editor (2015-16)
  • Real Property Council member of the WSBA Real Property, Probate and Trust Section Executive Committee

Speaking Engagements

  • Co-chair of WSBA CLE - Ethical Issues in the Practice of Real Property Law, December 16, 2016
  • Co-chair of WSBA CLE – Rapidly Developing Changes in Real Estate Litigation, April 7, 2017
  • Co-chair of WSBA CLE – Annual Fall Real Property Seminar, December 7, 2017
Since joining K&L Gates, Mr. Hefta has worked on a number of sophisticated transactions, including the following:


  • Ongoing representation of a Seattle-based multifamily and assisted living operator in the construction and permanent financing for multi-family, assisted living, office and hotel projects totaling over $1billion to date, including 16 assisted living facilities and 1600+ multi-family units.
  • Represented two major life insurance companies as co-lenders in the $600 million financing of an office building in San Francisco, CA.
  • Advised a life insurance company in the $400 million financing of a trophy office building in Seattle, WA.
  • Represented institutional lenders in Sharia-compliant financings, including a $130 million financing of an office building in downtown Seattle, WA and an $87 million financing of a credit-tenant office building in Houston, TX.
  • Represented a major life insurance company in the $350 million financing of a major regional shopping center in Bellevue, WA, and subsequent loan modifications.
  • Represented a life insurance company in the $100 million financing of a 5-star luxury hotel in Newport Beach, CA.
  • Advised a life insurance company in the $93 million construction to permanent financing of a 350+ unit apartment project in downtown Seattle, and represented the same life insurance company in the subsequent sale of the project and assumption of the loan.
  • Represented a registered investment manager in the obtaining lines of credit secured by portfolios of mortgage loans and REO properties owned by its managed funds.
  • Represented a non-profit corporation in a note offering secured by a pledge of the equity interest in its headquarters building.
  • Advised a life insurance company in the $35 million financing of a newly-constructed multi-family project in the Boston, MA area.
  • Represented a life insurance company in the $46.5 million constructions financing of a multi-family project in Charlotte, NC.
  • Represented the lender in the project financing of a battery energy storage facility in Ontario, Canada.


  • Represented an international investment fund manager in the acquisition and financing of a trophy Chicago Loop office tower.
  • Represented a multi-family investment and management company in the purchase and financing of nine apartment complexes in the Dallas, TX area, and related joint venture transactions.
  • Represented a Seattle multi-family developer in the $28 million sale of a newly-constructed apartment building in Seattle, WA.
  • Advised a non-profit corporation in the $30 million sale of its headquarters building in the University District of Seattle, WA.
  • Represented the seller in a $19 million sale of an apartment complex in Fort Worth, TX.
  • Represented a public entity in the sale of a development property for transit-oriented multi-family development in Tacoma, WA, together with related development agreements and restrictive covenants.

Distressed Real Estate

  • Represented a lender in a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure transaction for a portfolio of 26 properties located in three states.
  • Represented a distressed debt and equity investment fund in the acquisition and restructuring of numerous real estate loans, as well as the acquisition and financing of distressed assets.
  • Represented a special loan servicer in a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure transaction for a shopping center in Los Angeles, CA.


  • Represented a Seattle-based consulting company in various matters relating to the lease for its Seattle headquarters, as well as leases and subleases for offices in 20 other major U.S. markets.
  • Represented a special loan servicer in numerous commercial leases across the United States for its portfolio of REO properties.
  • Represented a number of Seattle-area start-up ventures in leases of office space, including the Bellevue, WA headquarters sublease for a fast-growing wellness technology start-up.

Joint Ventures

  • Represented a Seattle-based developer in the negotiation of joint venture agreements for the development of multi-family and assisted living projects in a suburban downtown redevelopment area.
  • Represented an assisted living developer in a joint venture for the development of an assisted living facility in Anthem, AZ.
  • Represented a developer in a joint venture for the development of an assisted living facility in Auburn, WA.


  • Represented a Chinese institutional investor in connection with real estate diligence and operating lease negotiations for a $900+ million investment in a joint venture acquiring a portfolio of 39 skilled nursing and assisted living facilities located in 11 states.
  • Advise clients with respect to real estate aspects of M&A and financing transactions, as well as sale-leasebacks and other corporate transactions.
  • Represented a municipality in connection with complex purchase in lieu of condemnation transactions.
  • Advise high net worth individuals in various matters relating to private residential properties, including purchases, sales, financing, leasing, development, condominium and home owners association issues.