Alarm firm buys in Glendale

Bells will be ringing in industrial south Glendale, where Bay Alarm Inc. just bought a building for its Los Angeles and San Fernando Valley headquarters.

The company paid $1.72 million for a 9,700-square-foot building on Standard Avenue, near San Fernando Road and Western Avenue.

"It will be our service, sales and installation hub for most of downtown L.A. and all of the valley," said Graham Westphal, co-president of the Bay Area-based company.

The company's current regional center is in Van Nuys.

"Glendale is a business-friendly community with proximity to the freeway east, south, north and west," Westphal said. "We like the neighborhood."

Bay Alarm is the largest independently owned burglar alarm company in the nation, with 100,000 California clients.

Westphal said roughly 40 employees will be based in Glendale, which will also serve as a regional training hub for employees.

The building on Standard is home to Intex, a silk and fabrics manufacturer.

Real estate agents involved in the deal say Intex will continue to occupy some of the space in the building, although Intex workers declined comment.

Randall Kobata, a Calabasas-based agent with Lee & Associates, which brokered the deal, said the sale came shortly after the property was listed. The deal moved swiftly because Bay Alarm's all-cash offer did not require a loan, he said.

"It was a quick escrow," he said. "A lot of that has to do with the fact the buyer didn't need any financing. That took out a lot of red tape."

Brett Warner, a Lee broker in Burbank who represented the sellers, the Taylor Family Trust, said Glendale is attractive to companies because it does not have a gross receipts tax and because, like Burbank, it has police, fire and utility services separate from the city of Los Angeles.

"People like the services of a charter city vs. being in L.A.," Warner said.

Kobata and Warner both acknowledged that the commercial market remains weak, as few buyers are looking to acquire space, especially in the office sector.

"For the market in general, activity is down right now," Kobata said. "The pool of buyers today, which probably as a whole is better-qualified than they were three years ago, has significantly shrunk."

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