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2/05/2016 - Why one of Houston's top multifamily brokers switched firms
Ryan Epstein founded CBRE Group Inc.'s multifamily investment sales group in Houston and built it into one of the top-producing teams nationally.

The eight-member team has marketed and sold apartment properties across Texas valued at more than $4.5 billion.

In late January, however, Epstein announced his team was moving from CBRE (NYSE: CBG) to Berkadia, a private joint venture between Omaha, Nebraska-based Berkshire Hathaway(NYSE: BRK-A) and New York-based Leucadia National Corp.(NYSE: LUK).

The New York-based joint venture has been making inroads into Houston's commercial real estate market, poaching brokers and teams from its competitors.

Why did you decide to leave CBRE for Berkadia?

Berkadia approached us nine months ago, after they brought in Tucker Knight and his team from HFF who handles business on the debt side. Berkadia wanted to complement them with an investment sales team. We started discussions, and we saw a company that is aggressively growing and aggressively investing in technology and innovation. We wanted to be a part of that and put our DNA on it.

What was the hardest part of your decision to switch companies?

The hardest part of our decision was leaving everyone at CBRE. I have nothing but good things to say about CBRE and the management there. But this was one of those opportunities where if we hadn't done this, I knew we would have regretted it. Berkadia is a private company whose complete focus is on multifamily, especially on the transaction side. It's their entire business, and they have to do it well.

How have your clients reacted to your decision to switch firms?

We've found a lot of the clients we work with are national companies who own and operate apartments across the country. The majority of these groups have already been doing business on the debt side with Berkadia. We'll be working hand-in-hand with Tucker to provide the investment sales side now. This is now a one-shop solution. The reception from the clients we've been talking to has been positive. I can't think of one client who hasn't followed us.

What are your goals now that you're with Berkadia?

We want to be the investment adviser of choice for majority of apartment sales in this market. We also want to help grow Berkadia's Texas platform and the capabilities of other teams in Texas. We have a long way to go to get that bigger market share, but we've made great headways in the past five years. Our business will continue as before. We really haven't missed a beat. It's the same team with a different uniform. [Houston Business Journal]

1/29/2016 - Berkadia Continues National Expansion with Addition of Top Investment Sales Team in Houston
Former CBRE Group to Accelerate Berkadia's Texas Growth Efforts

NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Berkadia, an industry-leading commercial real estate company, today announced the hiring of an eight-person multifamily investment sales team in Houston. The team previously worked together in CBRE's Capital Markets Multi-Housing Group based in Houston, where they focused on Houston, San Antonio and other Texas markets. All will report to Head of Investment Sales Keith Misner, effective immediately.

"This group of individuals is known throughout the industry as one of the top multifamily investment sales teams in the country, specifically in Houston," said Misner. "Adding a team of this caliber - which has worked together for a number of years - immediately strengthens our Texas presence. We're truly excited for them to join Berkadia."

The team is led by Senior Managing Director Ryan Epstein and Managing Director Clint Duncan and includes Associate Directors Wes Breeding and Jennifer Ray. They will work closely with Berkadia's existing brokers and mortgage bankers in Houston and across the state to provide integrated investment sales, mortgage banking and servicing solutions.

"Berkadia is one of a kind because its platform strengthens the company's ability to offer clients comprehensive real estate solutions," said Epstein. "Our entire team looks forward to elevating the company's presence in Texas and leveraging a full suite of products to help current and future clients alike."

Since 2006, the team has marketed and sold assets valued at more than $4.5 billion and has continually been ranked as top producers nationally, working with a diverse client base of REITs, pension funds, private investment companies and local and national developers. [Business Wire]

1/28/2016 - Berkadia Arranges Sale of Apartment Complexes in College Station
COLLEGE STATION, TEXAS - Lutz Real Estate Investments, in a joint venture with Harrison Street Real Estate Capital, has sold University Square and Laurel Ridge Apartments located near Texas A&M University in College Station. Kevin Larimer of Berkadia represented the seller in the transaction. Lutz and Harrison Street acquired University Square and Laurel Ridge in December 2012. Upon acquisition, Lutz upgraded the unit interiors, amenities and technology infrastructure, and made cosmetic upgrades at both properties. [Real Estate Business Online]

1/27/2016 - Berkadia Stakes Claim in Southern California, Bolsters Investment Sales Capabilities with Four Industry Veterans
NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Berkadia, an industry-leading commercial real estate company, today announced the hiring of Managing Director Joe Leon and Senior Director Jeff Rowerdink in Irvine, California and Managing Director James Fisher and Senior Director Mike Smith in West Los Angeles, all joining the company's multifamily investment sales team. Each will report to Head of Investment Sales Keith Misner, effective immediately, and work with Berkadia's existing brokers and mortgage bankers in Southern California.

Berkadia's expansion in Southern California comes three months after adding five team members to its multifamily investment sales team in San Diego, including Managing Directors Ed Rosen and John Chu.

"We remain committed to growing our investment sales capabilities in regions where investor demand and need is strong, and Southern California is no exception," said Misner. "Combined, our four newest team members bring more than 100 years of brokerage and advisory experience in the California real estate market, and we look forward to their positive contributions with our integrated mortgage banking, servicing and investment sales platform."

Leon joins from Jones Lang LaSalle, where he was a managing director of the firms' Southern California multifamily practice for nearly five years. He previously served as a partner at Hendricks & Partners for 10 years and senior vice president at CB Richard Ellis for 15 years. During his 29-year real estate tenure, he has been responsible for the sale of more than 26,000 multifamily housing units whose total value exceeds $4 billion and has also successfully executed the sale of over 176 acres of multifamily land sites, resulting in the development of close to 5,300 apartment homes. Leon earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Liberal Studies from California State University Fullerton. After graduation, he became a U.S. Marine Corps Officer and completed the OCS & TBS Leadership Program in Quantico, Virginia. He is currently an active member of the National Multifamily Housing Council (NHMC), Urban Land Institute and NAIOP.

Rowerdink was previously at Essex Property Trust, Inc. for 15 years, where he served as first vice president and head acquisitions officer for Southern California. While there, he specialized in large, Class A and B assets in Orange and San Diego counties and the south coast of Los Angeles, and oversaw more than $4.5 billion in acquisitions and dispositions. Prior to that, he was an apartment broker for Sperry Van Ness for eight years.

Most recently, Fisher served as principal for Lee & Associates in Southern California, representing buyers, sellers and developers in multifamily and land acquisitions and dispositions. He brings 35 years of experience including previous roles as vice president of Barry Powell Real Estate Investment Company. To date, he has successfully negotiated transactions in excess of $3 billion including some of the largest portfolio sales in Southern California and been recognized by industry publications as one of California's top brokers. Fisher is an active member of the NMHC and National Apartment Association.

Smith also joins from Lee & Associates, where he spent his entire 12-year career and most recently served as a principal along with Fisher. Throughout his career, he has been responsible for the sale of approximately 8,000 units accounting for approximately $1 billion in Southern California. In 2015, he was named one of Real Estate Forum's emerging leaders in multifamily commercial real estate. Smith earned his Bachelor of Business Administration degree from the University of Notre Dame's Mendoza College of Business and is currently a member of the California Association of Realtors and NMHC. [Business Wire]

1/26/2016 - Bham area apartment portfolio purchased for $66M
Four apartment communities in the Birmingham area recently sold as a portfolio to a Nashville firm for $66 million.

Elmington Capital Group purchased the properties in partnership with Los Angeles-based Summit Equity Investments.

Elmington said in a release that it bought the Abbey at Lakeshore, the Abbey at Vestavia Falls, the Abbey at Wisteria Crest and the Cliffs at Rocky Ridge. It's a total of 882 units between the four properties.

The firm already owns Emerald Pointe in Hoover. The new purchase brings its Birmingham area portfolio to 1,074 total units.

"We are very excited about these acquisitions given their desirable locations in Homewood, Vestavia Hills and Hoover," said Hunter Nelson, a Birmingham native and SVP of acquisitions, in a press release. "We look forward to providing high-quality residences at an affordable price in communities with topnotch school systems and convenient access to retail and jobs."

Elmington said it plans extensive renovations at each property, including interior upgrades and amenity additions among other features. Additionally, the company has already begun to rebrand the properties as "Elevation Homewood," "Elevation Vestavia Hills," and "Elevation Hoover."

David Oakley, managing director of Birmingham's Berkadia office, and senior director David Etchison negotiated the transactions.

According to Berkadia, Abbey at Wisteria Crest was built in 1972 and renovated in 2008 and 2014; Abbey at Lakeshore was built in 1971 and renovated in 1998 and 2015; and The Abbey at Vestavia Falls was built in 1972 and renovated in 1998 and 2015. The transaction for the three properties closed Dec. 1.

The Cliffs at Rocky Ridge transaction closed Dec. 15. That property was built in 1975 and renovated in 2005 and 2014. [Birmingham Business Journal]

1/25/2016 - Berkadia Beefs Up Hotels Platform
NEW YORK CITY - Bolstering the hotel platform in launched last year, Berkadia has brought in a trio of senior hospitality executives. John J. DePaul, David Weymer and Mark Morris have joined the company as managing directors in its hotels & hospitality group, each with 30-plus years’ experience in the lodging sector.

When Berkadia hired Andrew Coleman this past April to lead the newly formed hotels & hospitality group, the company was looking "to grow into a full-service commercial real estate advisory firm across all platforms, moving out of what would be just the debt space," Coleman tells At Walker & Dunlop, Coleman's previous employer, "we were primarily focused on debt, and I see the market moving toward where we need to provide ancillary services across an entire platform."

Coleman tells that this past April, "Berkadia expressed to me that I would be able to custom-build a group that met what I thought were our client's needs, which was very exciting to me." DePaul will be responsible for the capital markets and asset management & advisory functions of the hotels platform, while Weymer and Morris will focus on the investment sales function of the platform.

"Prospective clients in the hotels & hospitality sector expressed the need for integrated finance solutions, which is why we hired Andrew last year to lead our efforts in the space," says Ernest Katai, EVP and head of production at Berkadia. "By adding John, Dave and Mark, three of the most well-known and respected hospitality professionals in the industry, we're showing our continued commitment to expanding our platform and becoming a leader in the space."

Based out of Berkadia's Ambler, PA office, DePaul has advised, acquired or managed assets with an aggregate value of more than $5 billion. Most recently, he served as executive vice president of strategic advisory & asset management with JLL's hotels & hospitality group in New York City.

Both Weymer and Morris have three decades' experience in hospitality lending. Weymer joins Berkadia from Lantern Realty Advisors, where he represented clients in an advisory and legal capacity on multiple transactions totaling over $1 billion between 2012 and 2015. Before that, he held senior principal positions at Noble Investments and Thayer Lodging Group.

Morris most recently was SVP at Hunter Hotel Advisors. Focusing on the Mid-Atlantic, he has successfully structured and completed hotel sales transactions totaling more than $3.5 billion in North America. Along with experience, Morris brings to Berkadia a team of investment sales professionals, including John Testerman and Matt Bailly. [GlobeSt]

1/20/2016 - Huntington MF Changes Hands
HUNTINGTON BEACH, CA - Berkadia closed recenlty on the sale of Artisan Apartments, a 277-unit multifamily property located at 15555 Huntington Village Lane in Huntington Beach.

Senior directors Shane Shafer and Peter Hauser of the Irvine office negotiated the sale, which closed at $87.5 million on December 10, 2015. The seller was Kennedy Wilson and the buyer was Domino Realty Management Company, Inc., both based in Beverly Hills. The sale price reflects a per-unit price of $318,181. Additionally, managing director Allan Freedman of Berkadia's Los Angeles office assisted with the assumable financing.

"Quality of life, the strong job market and healthy apartment operations continue to support robust investment activity in the Orange County multifamily market," said Keith Misner, head of investment sales. "Activity is brisk in the area, so Berkadia's regional team of investment advisors and mortgage bankers collaborated quickly to execute this deal on time for both the buyer and the seller."

"Kennedy Wilson purchased the property in June of 2012. During their time as owners, they added value to the asset through interior and exterior renovations and, as the submarket improved, was able to realize a substantial return through this sale," said Shafer. "Domino Realty purchased the property as a long-term hold in anticipation of the property's appreciation and to take advantage of current cash flow and tax benefits. It also is conveniently located near additional Domino Realty-owned assets within Orange County, creating strong management economies between properties."

Domino Realty plans to continue renovations to the property's interiors, while adding additional common area amenities in order to meet renter demand and fuel strong future rental growth.

uilt in 1977, Artisan's unique layout combines three different designs: urban mid-rise units over podium parking, two-story, garden-style apartments and two-story townhouse style apartments. The 275-unit property features one- and two-bedroom floor plans. Unit amenities include fully equipped kitchens with granite countertops and stainless steel appliances, gas fireplaces, walk-in closets, cable access and balconies or patios. Community amenities include two heated swimming pools, laundry facilities, tennis courts, a fitness center, barbeques, and gated community access. The property was 97% occupied at the time of sale.

"Rarely does an apartment asset of this size sell in the coastal sub-market of Huntington Beach," Hauser added. "Due to its locale, quality condition and unique unit designs, Artisan was a highly attractive investment opportunity that generated a lot of buyer interest."

The Artisan, located near the 405 and 22 freeways and adjacent to the newly renovated Bella Terra Mall. The property is also within six miles of popular beaches and 11 miles from Disneyland. Top employers in the area include Fountain Valley Regional Hospital, StorCase Technologies Inc., IBM, Zodiac Aerospace and Hyundai corporate headquarters.

Orange County area vacancy rose 40 basis points to 4.2% by the end of 2015. The average asking rent increased 4.4% year-over-year to an average of $1,955 per month.

Berkadia, a joint venture of Berkshire Hathaway and Leucadia National Corporation, is an industry-leading commercial real estate company providing comprehensive capital solutions and investment sales advisory and research services for multifamily and commercial properties. Berkadia is among the largest, highest rated and most respected primary, master and special servicers in the industry. [GlobeSt]

1/19/2016 - Scott Melnick Joins Berkadia's Investment Sales Team in DC Metro Area
Former JLL Managing Director Hired to Grow Berkadia’s Presence in Mid-Atlantic Region

NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Berkadia, an industry-leading commercial real estate company, today announced the hiring of Scott Melnick to its multifamily investment sales team as senior managing director. He will be based in the Bethesda, Maryland office and report to Head of Investment Sales Keith Misner, effective immediately. Melnick brings 30 years of experience in the commercial real estate industry to Berkadia, where he will be responsible for expanding the company's national multifamily investment sales platform in the mid-Atlantic region.

Berkadia's Bethesda, Maryland office will now offer both investment sales and mortgage banking services.

"Scott is one of the most highly regarded professionals in the multifamily investment sales and brokerage industry," said Misner. "His addition immediately strengthens our footprint in the Washington, D.C. metro area, where we can provide clients with a full suite of integrated mortgage banking, servicing and investment sales services."

Most recently, Melnick served as managing director of Jones Lang LaSalle's Mid-Atlantic Multifamily Group for nearly six years, where he led a team specialized in providing transaction-related investment services to multifamily industry clients in the region. Previously, he was a managing principal of Transwestern's Institutional Multifamily Group for nearly 11 years. Melnick has been involved in over $5 billion in transactions over the last five years and more than $11 billion in his career.

"I'm excited to join the Berkadia team and help grow its investment sales capabilities in the dynamic mid-Atlantic region, where I've spent my entire career," added Melnick.

Melnick earned a Master of Business Administration degree in Finance from New York University and Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from Ithaca College. He is currently a board member of the National Multifamily Housing Council and member of the Urban Land Institute. Of note, he has been recognized consistently by the Greater Washington Commercial Association of Realtors as one of the top producing multifamily brokers in the Washington, D.C. metro area for each of the past 16 years. [Business Wire]

1/13/2016 - Berkadia Negotiates Multifamily Sale in San Antonio
SAN ANTONIO - Berkadia has negotiated the sale and financing of Oak Hills Village located at 1847 Babcock Road in San Antonio. Mike Miller, Chris Ross, Will Caruth and Cody Courtney of Berkadia's San Antonio office negotiated the transaction. Jeffery Kinney of Berkadia's Jacksonville, Fla., office arranged the 10-year, fixed-rate CMBS financing. Built in 1972, the 121-unit property features one-, two- and three-bedroom floor plans. Each unit features fully equipped kitchens, walk-in closets, linen closets and ceiling fans. Select units feature a fenced backyard or patio, wet bar, gas fireplace, extra storage and golf course views. Community amenities include laundry facilities, covered parking, outdoor picnic and barbecue areas, swimming pool and pet park. The community is located near Loop 410 and I-10. Oak Hills Village is four miles from Ingram Park Mall and 10 miles from downtown San Antonio. A private investor from California was the seller. A Florida-based private investor was the buyer and will rehabilitate the units to optimize rent potential. [Real Estate Business Online]

1/05/2016 - Two Fresno apartment complexes sold to Southern CA investor for $11.7 million
A Southern California investor has purchased two Fresno apartment complexes for $11.7 million, Berkadia Real Estate Advisors, Fresno announced Monday.

The investor, who was not named, bought Sycamore Heights, 4630 E. Shields Ave., and Sequoia Ridge, 454 S. Waverly Lane. The parties were represented by Robin C. Kane and Gordon J. Larkin of Berkadia.

Sycamore Heights is a 132-unit development with one- and two-bedroom apartments built in 1974 just west of Fresno Yosemite International Airport. Amenities include a pool, big dog park, playground and community barbecue and grilling areas.

Sequoia Ridge is an 80-unit complex with two-bedroom apartments, spacious courtyards and a pool built in 1971. It is located north of the Orchard Supply Hardware shopping center at Kings Canyon Road and Clovis Avenue. [The Fresno Bee]

12/29/2015 - Berkadia Brokers $7.4M Sale of Multifamily Property in Waukegan, Illinois
WAUKEGAN, ILL. - Berkadia has brokered the $7.4 million sale of a multifamily property in Waukegan, located about 47 miles north of Chicago. Westwood is a 132-unit apartment complex that was built in 1970 and is located at 2720-2732 Westwood Drive. The sales price reflects a price per unit of $56,061. Westwood was 95 percent occupied at the time of sale. The property features all two-bedroom floor plans. Community amenities include a playground, picnic area and laundry rooms in each building. VCP Westwood Apartments LLC sold the property to Haoyue Investments. Ralph DePasquale of Berkadia brokered the transaction. [Real Estate Business Online]

12/28/2015 - Grosvenor pays $40M for Somerset Green
Grosvenor Americas bought Somerset Green, a 101-unit townhome community in the Newport area of Bellevue, for $40.2 million from Carmel Partners.

Somerset Green has 18 two- and three-story buildings on 7 acres at 4249 129th Place S.E. Units range from 922 to 1,378 square feet. Rents for the largest units start at $2,810 a month, according to the development's website.

Grosvenor said in a release it will spend $5 million to upgrade exteriors, interiors and landscaping.

"Somerset Green is a strategic acquisition for our portfolio of multifamily properties in the Puget Sound region," said Mark Purdy, general manager and vice president of investment for Grosvenor. "Significant new commercial development is emerging in and around Bellevue, including the expansion of Lincoln Square and the Spring District."

Grosvenor has about 3,350 rental units in the U.S. and Canada, including 1,500 in the Puget Sound region. It owns Campbell Run (Woodinville), Chelsea at Juanita Village (Kirkland) and Bridges at Northcreek (Bothell).

Grosvenor Americas is part of Grosvenor Group, an investment and development company with 17 offices in 11 countries.

Carmel Partners is based in San Francisco and has an office in Seattle.

Kenny Dudunakis, Ben Johnson and David Sorensen of Berkadia represented Carmel in the Somerset Green deal. [Daily Journal of Commerce]

12/21/2015 - Foreign investors pay record-setting price for Northwest Portland building
A Singapore-based investment group has purchased a Pearl District apartment complex for a record-setting sale price.

Portland's Columbia Investments and Washougal-based Lone Wolf Investments on Wednesday announced that they sold the Janey, a development on Northwest Everett Street between 10th and 11th avenues, for $45 million.

The price reflects a value of $647 per square foot - a Portland record, said Greg Frick, co-founder of HFO Investment Real Estate, which tracks local sales of multifamily properties.

"That's the record per foot, for sure," Frick said. "No doubt about it."

The Janey has 112 studio and one-bedroom units, 68 parking spaces and nearly 5,000 square feet of ground-floor retail space, according to a news release published Wednesday. GBD Architects designed the development, which has rooftop decks and mechanized parking. The first phase, completed in 2012, is six stories tall. The expansion, completed this year, is three floors taller.

"We're very proud of this building," said Peter Stott, president of Columbia Investments, in the news release. "It's prime real estate in a thriving neighborhood, and we had every intention of holding onto it for the long run. But the quality and the location of the apartments proved to be a very attractive opportunity for the buyer."

The buyer was Singapore's Mapletree Group, a real estate investment firm that is in partnership with Los Angeles-based Oakwood Worldwide. The commercial real estate firm Berkadia helped broker the deal, representing the sellers.

"I'm not surprised, on a newer construction in the Pearl District, that we're setting a new price record right now in this market," Frick said. "Investor demand is really strong."

The sale is the latest in a record-setting year for the Portland multifamily market. By October, the region had already surpassed last year's all-time high of $1.6 billion in acquisitions and was on pace for $2.1 billion in sales on 250 properties by the end of the year. The flurry of sales come amid rapidly increasing rents and a historically low inventory of vacant units.

Earlier this year in the Pearl District, the Overton Pearl office building sold for $500 per square foot in a deal described at the time as "eye-popping."

Joe Nydahl, a director with Berkadia who helped close the deal, said Columbia Investments and Lone Wolf Investments originally did not want to sell the property, but the record-setting sale price convinced them otherwise.

Nydahl, pointing out that Oakwood Worldwide specializes in short-term executive housing, said the Janey is slated for future use as a temporary home for visiting employees at Portland-area companies.

The Portland Business Journal first reported on the deal. [The Oregonian]

12/17/2015 - Berkadia Taps Keith Misner for Senior Position
Keith Misner has been hired by Berkadia to serve as head of investment sales, bringing more than two decades of experience in the commercial real estate industry.

In his new position, Misner will be based in the company's Bethesda, Md. office, and report to Executive Vice President & Head of Production Ernie Katai. Misner will mainly be responsible for accelerating the growth of Berkadia's investment sales platform.

"Berkadia's investment sales platform has been vital to the company's continued success, transforming it into a fully integrated, one-stop shop for mortgage banking, servicing and investment sales needs," Katai stated. "Keith's addition underscores our commitment to the investment sales space, and we're confident that with his leadership and expertise, we will deepen current client relationships and expand our market presence across the country."

Prior to joining Berkadia, Misner served as senior vice president and portfolio manager at Abacus Capital Group LLC. During his professional career, Misner also served as senior vice president of transactions at AIMCO, and senior leadership roles at Grubb & Ellis, CBRE, GreenCastle Development and Cushman & Wakefield.

Keith Misner holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration degree in Finance and Real Estate from East Carolina University, and a Master's Degree in Real Estate Development from New York University. He is also an active member of the Urban Land Institute and the National Multifamily Housing Council. [Commercial Property Executive]

12/16/2015 - Berkadia Seals the Deal in Silicon Hills
Berkadia negotiated the sale of a multifamily property in Austin, Texas.

Berkadia recently closed the sale of Villas del Sol Apartments, a 294-unit residential community. Forrest Bass and George Deuillet, both senior directors in Berkadia's Austin office, completed the transaction on Nov. 16.

ACA Villa del Sol LLC of Austin was the buyer, and San Diego-based LLJ Quez Rutland Place LLC was the seller. Terms are undisclosed.

Villas del Sol Apartments is accessible from U.S. Highway 183 and Interstate Route 35 and within three miles of major retail centers such as The Arboretum and The Domain. Among the area's major employers are Texas Medicaid Healthcare, St. David’s North Austin Medical Center, National Instrument Corp. and Pfizer Inc.

"There is tremendous rental demand in the North Austin area right now, and the buyer was attracted to this property's track record of strong performance as well as its upside potential," Bass said in a statement. "Villas del Sol has experienced significant rent growth over the last couple of years, and the buyer will be able to capitalize on this momentum as it continues to upgrade units and lease them at market rates."

The community is located at 1647 and 1711 Rutland Drive and was built in two phases during 1978 and 1982. Its almost 300 apartments consist of studio, one-, and two-bedroom floor plans and is 96 percent occupied. Unit amenities include fully equipped kitchens, walk-in pantries, faux-wood vinyl flooring, built-in desks, and bookshelves, ceiling fans, walk-in closets, linen closets, and patios or balconies. Select units also have fireplaces and vaulted ceilings. Community amenities include a swimming pool, clubhouse, fitness center, business center, playground, picnic areas with barbecue grills, two laundry facilities and a dog park. [Multi-Housing News]

12/15/2015 - Berkadia Completes Sale and Financing for Three Local Multifamily Properties
Salt Lake City - Berkadia recently completed sales and financing for several properties across Utah. James Wadsworth and Greg Barratt of the Salt Lake City office completed the sales of Somerset Village and Southwillow Apartments. Additionally, they worked with Managing Director Clay Akiwenzie of the San Francisco office to complete the sale and financing for The Village at Raintree.

Somerset Village, a 486-unit multifamily property located at 3810 South Redwood Road in West Valley City was sold with Southwillow Apartments, a 440-unit multifamily property located at 6885 South Redwood Road in West Jordan on Oct. 27. Both the buyer and seller for the properties are entities based in California.

Built in 1985, Somerset Village features one-, two- and three-bedroom floor plans with unit amenities such as fully equipped kitchens and cable and Internet access. Select units have a washer and dryer. Community amenities include year-round access to a heated indoor pool, outdoor pool, hot tub, basketball court, fitness center, clubhouse, tennis courts, dog park, play area, laundry facilities and a controlled-access gate. It is two miles from Salt Lake City Community College and approximately nine miles from downtown Salt Lake City. Top employers in the area include American Express, Intermountain Medical Center, Discover Financial Services and UPS.

Southwillow Apartments, constructed in 1987, features one- and two-bedroom floor plans and unit amenities of fully equipped kitchens, patios or balconies, and washers and dryers in select units. Community amenities include an outdoor swimming pool and deck, hot tub, indoor and outdoor basketball courts, fitness center, clubhouse, barbeque and picnic areas, playground, two 24-hour laundry centers and reserved parking. The property is two miles from Jordan Landing Shopping & Restaurants and less than four miles from Fashion Place Mall. Top employers in the area include Jordan School District, Jordan Valley Hospital, Intermountain Medical Center and FLSmidth.

"Salt Lake City's strong economy continues to add jobs at a quick pace," Wadsworth said. "These deals demonstrate that the strong employment and apartment markets are catching investors' attention, with competition for these assets rising rapidly from out-of-state buyers."

The Village at Raintree, a 152-unit multifamily property located at 870 North 900 West in Salt Lake City, was sold and financed on Oct. 30. The acquisition loan features a 76.4 percent loan-to-value ratio. Built in 1984, the property features one- and two-bedroom floor plans with a fully-equipped kitchen and energy-efficient appliances, fireplace, balcony or patio, walk-in closets and storage. Select units have washer and dryer appliances, hardwood floors and vaulted ceilings. Community amenities include covered parking, clubhouse, fitness center, laundry facility, swimming pool, hot tub, WiFi, barbeque area and picnic area. It is less than three miles from Vivint Smart Home Arena, home of the NBA's Utah Jazz, and less than four miles from downtown Salt Lake City. The area's top employers include Fidelity, Delta Airlines, Wells Fargo Bank, Zion's Bank and University of Utah.

"Berkadia's detailed understanding of the market and asset allowed us to move quickly and effectively through the process." Akiwenzie said. "Our unique ability to work cross-platform with the investment sales team allowed us to offer the best terms and prices to the client."

Salt Lake City metro-wide vacancy was 4.6 percent by September. During this time, metro-wide rents were $974 per month, up 3.4 percent annually. [Utah Business]

12/11/2015 - Berkadia Arranges $16.8 Million Sale of The Mark Near Arizona State University
Tempe, Ariz. - Berkadia has arranged the $16.8 million sale of The Mark, a student housing community within walking distance of Arizona State University in Tempe.

The Mark features 161 units with studio, one- and two-bedroom floor plans. Built in 1970, the property is currently 98 percent occupied and master-metered for HVAC.

Community amenities include a swimming pool, sundeck, student lounge, fitness center, courtyard with barbecue grills, and elevator access.

Berkadia Vice President Dan Cheyne, Senior Managing Director Mark Forrester and Managing Director Ric Holway of the Phoenix office, as well as Managing Director - Student Housing Kevin Larimer of the Detroit office, closed the sale on Nov. 23.

Nelson-Brothers of Aliso Viejo, California, is the buyer of the property. The seller, Sundance Bay of Salt Lake City, had purchased the property as a distressed asset and completed a full renovation and rebranding.

The purchase price reflects a per-unit price of $104,280. [Student Housing Business]

12/08/2015 - Berkadia Closes Sale of Kansas City Property
Berkadia announced the closing sale of a 308-unit multifamily property.

Berkadia recently announced the sale of The Vintage at Zona Rosa, a 308-unit multifamily property in Kansas City, Mo. The transaction was negotiated on October 29 by Senior Director Phillip Brimble of Berkadia's Kansas City office.

The value-add property has been acquired by local firm JTL Real Estate Partners LLC. The new owner plans to upgrade units as well as expand and improve the amenities. The seller, VPR Properties LLC of Port Charlotte, Fla., was represented by Brimble in the transaction. The financial details were not disclosed.

"The buyer is a very experienced investor with a national presence and decades of success with improving and operating under-performing assets, typically partnering with large equity funds," said Brimble. "Additionally, this was an off-market sale with no public exposure to the greater buying community. Still, the price and capitalization are comparable to recent sales of widely marketed, similar vintage and quality assets."

The Vintage at Zona Rosa is located at 8811 North Congress Ave., in close proximity to State Route 152 and Interstate 29. Downtown Kansas City is 14 miles southeast of the community, while Zona Rosa Town Center and The Shops at Boardwalk are one and two miles away, respectively. Top employers in the immediate area include American Airlines, Dairy Farmers of America, Harley-Davidson and Tyco Integrated Security.

The community was built in 2000, totaling 308 units with one-, two-, and three-bedroom floor plans. Apartment amenities include fully equipped kitchens, designer cabinetry, cathedral ceilings, built-in computer desks, cable and internet access, balconies and patios, as well as ceiling fans in master bedrooms. Community amenities include a resort-style swimming pool, lake in the center of the community, fitness center, courtyard, clubhouse and business center. [Multi-Housing News]

12/07/2015 - Orange County Deals Completed, Including Largest Deal in Tustin this Year
Two Orange County assets recently traded hands in Berkadia-arranged deals.

Tustin Parc Apartments and Hacienda Court Apartments traded hands in separate deals this October, with both deals arranged by Berkadia Senior Director Shane Shafer.

Tustin Parc Apartments was purchased for an undisclosed amount by A & M Properties of Huntington Beach from two San Francisco-based entities, including Carmel Partners. The new owner aims to carry out a number of improvements at the property.

Located at 16282 East Main St., the asset consists of 246 two-bedroom apartments. Currently operating at 4 percent occupancy, Tustin Parc offers proximity to State Route 55 and Santa Ana Freeway, as well as The MarketPlace and Santa Ana Zoo. The deal is the largest to take place in Tustin this year.

Purchased for $15 million by an investor along with general partner CH Realty Investments from A & M, the Hacienda Court Apartments is an 84-unit community. The property's unit mix consists of one- and two-bedroom floor plans, and apartments feature fully equipped kitchens, cable and Internet access, and vertical blinds.

Residents have access to an amenity package that includes laundry and on-site management. The 1961-built residential building is located at 104 East Leatrice Lane near the I-5 in Anaheim. Anaheim Gardenwalk and Disneyland Parks and Resorts are located nearby. [Multi-Housing News]

11/30/2015 - Berkadia Closes on Two Multifamily Sales in New Mexico
Two multifamily communities changed hands in New Mexico with Berkadia’s involvement.

Berkadia lent a helping hand in two deals that took place in Albuquerque and Santa Fe; the deals were managed by the company's Albuquerque, West Los Angeles, and San Francisco offices.

In the first transaction, Berkadia negotiated the sale of Northpointe Village, a multifamily community located at 12801 Indian School Road NE in Albuquerque. The property is situated near I-40, five miles from Coronado Center Mall, and seven miles from Kirtland Air Force Base. Top employers in the area include the University of New Mexico, ABQ Health Partners, Kirtland Air Force Base, and Sandia National Laboratories. The property was 96 percent occupied at the time of the sale.

The seller was San Diego-based Strata High Ridge LLC; the buyer is Keller Investment Properties LLC of Centerville, Utah. Senior director Bill Fox of the Albuquerque office completed the sale on October 30, while managing director Clay Akiwenzie of the San Francisco office negotiated the acquisition loan through Berkadia's Freddie Mac program. Financial details about the transaction have not been disclosed.

"Albuquerque continues to receive significant interest from investors considering tertiary markets," Fox said. "With the property's prime location and well-maintained condition, the powerful combination of Berkadia's mortgage banking and investment sales teams allowed us to work efficiently to meet all parties' needs."

Completed in 1987 as a fenced community, Northpointe Village encompasses 256 units with one- and two-bedroom floor plans. Unit amenities include fully equipped kitchens with stainless steel appliances, pantries, washers and dryers, cable and internet access, spacious closets, and balconies or patios. Community amenities feature a swimming pool and hot tub, clubhouse with a fully equipped kitchen, and courtyards with barbecue grills and picnic areas.

In the second transaction that closed on October 30, Berkadia negotiated the sale of Vista Alegre, an affordable housing community located at 1489 Zepol Road in Santa Fe. The property is less than a mile from Santa Fe Place Mall and six miles from all the downtown attractions, with convenient access to I-25 and State Routes 599 and 285. Top employers in the area include Santa Fe City Risk Management, Santa Fe Community College, New Mexico Health Department, and New Mexico State Government.

The seller was Post Investment Group Inc. and the buyer is Zepol Road Properties LLC, both from Los Angeles. Bill Fox and senior managing director Dean Zander of the West Los Angeles office managed the transaction. The price tag was not disclosed.

"Like Northpointe Village, this property was a great value-add purchase," said Fox. "A higher cap rate due to a smaller tertiary market has historically provided for a stable investment environment with very little competition from newer properties."

Vista Alegre was built in 1987 and offers 286 units with studio, one-, two-, and three-bedroom floor plans. Unit amenities include fully equipped kitchens, and ceiling fans, while the list of community amenities features picnic areas with barbecue grills, two playgrounds, fitness center, basketball courts, two swimming pools, and a volleyball court. [Multi-Housing News]

11/24/2015 - Eagle's Nest Apartments Lands New Owner
Berkadia announced completing the sale of Eagle's Nest Apartments in San Antonio.

Berkadia announced completing the sale of Eagle's Nest Apartments on October 2. Managing Director Mike Miller, Director Chris Ross, Director Will Caruth and Associate Cody Courtney of the San Antonio office were part of the team arranging the sale.

The seller was Eagle Apartments LTD of San Antonio, a longtime property owner in Texas. The buyer, a private investor from Orem, Utah, was looking to add to its portfolio. Financial details about the transaction were not disclosed.

"The buyer was looking to add well-located, value-add assets to their already impressive San Antonio portfolio," said Miller. "The renovated units and highly visible, medical center location made Eagle's Nest Apartments an appealing and strategic acquisition."

The residential community that sits on 7.84 acres at 5211 Fredericksburg Road, was built in 1980. Eagle's Nest Apartments is less than six miles from North Star Mall and one mile from Wonderland of the Americas Mall. Top employers in the area include USAA, South Texas Medical Center, University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio and University of Texas San Antonio.

The community consists of 226 units including studio, one- and two-bedroom floorplans. Apartment amenities include balconies or patios, fully equipped kitchens, walk-in closets, vaulted ceilings, fireplaces, hardwood floors and extra storage. Community amenities feature volleyball courts, barbeques, a swimming pool, clubhouse, laundry room and outside storage. [Multi-Housing News]

11/23/2015 - Investors snapping up multi-unit residential properties
Investor interest in multi-unit residential real estate is picking up considerably around the Central Valley, with three large apartment complexes changing hands in October.

The 32-unit Villa Palmilla property in Madera sold last month for $3.2 million. The property, located at 102-190 South Granada, was built in 2006.

Also in October, investors purchased two big Fresno apartment complexes. The Summertree Apartments on N. Maple Ave. sold for $2.05 million and the Vintage Wood Apartments, also on N. Maple, changed hands for $4.67 million.

Summertree was built in 1984 and has 39 units. Vintage Wood is vintage 1981 and includes 66 units.

Robin Kane, senior director of investment sales at Berkadia, closed all three deals, which totaled nearly $10 million.

"We had a pretty good October," Kane said. "No complaints there."

A Southern California investor purchased the Summertree property and local investors picked up Villa Palmilla and Vintage Wood, according to Kane.

"The market is at the part of the business cycle where prices are getting overheated in the coastal areas. Properties there aren't providing good enough yields. So investors in Southern California start turning their attention to places like the Inland Empire and then the Central Valley," Kane said.

"Same thing with the Bay Area," he added. "Buyers there are tending to gravitate eastward toward the Delta and then to Sacramento. And then when Sacramento gets too pricey, those investors tend to look to the Central Valley too."

Kane said the current trend reflects "capital coming out the primary markets to the tertiary markets chasing yields. It's hard to say how much runway we have left in this cycle but I think it's longer than we thought," he added.

Industry watchers say that in a strong real estate cycle, when more people become homebuyers, it tends to take renters out of the market.

"But now that home prices have risen and the inventory is lower, the rental market cycle has been extended," Kane said. "Because of that, people are staying renters longer. Couple that with the lack of new construction and it's created a very favored asset class of investment with multi-family apartments because you have that demographic working in your favor."

Kane thinks 2016 will be another strong year for multi-family. "I think next year will be as good a year as this year," he said. "We thought we would start running out of steam this year and clearly we haven't. During an election year, there should be a strong interest in keeping interest rates down. And that should be favorable for the entire real estate market."

But Kane noted that the Central Valley real estate market has now been in recovery for five years. "We're going into our sixth year in 2016," he said. "That's pretty long for an up cycle. Next year should be solid but after the election, all bets are off."

But the good news for multi-family investors could turn out to be bad news for renters.

"For the first time in a long time, management companies are starting to think about raising rents," Kane said. "Most apartment managers will tell you that their business has been very good. And that's a reflection of a stronger economy - kids moving out of the house, people upgrading and moving up."

Kane confirmed that Berkadia has closed close to $100 million in apartment property sales just in the Central Valley area alone in 2015.

This summer, the company also sold a $28-million apartment complex in Sacramento.

"That sale was another example of Bay Area investors being unable to find anything in the San Francisco area," Kane said. [The Business Journal]

11/17/2015 - Berkadia Brokers $29.2M Sale of Apartment Community in Birmingham
BIRMINGHAM, ALA. - Berkadia has brokered the $29.2 million sale of Stonecrest at Double Oak Mountain, a 315-unit apartment property located in Birmingham. Built in 1998, the garden-style community features two- and three-story buildings housing units that average 1,176 square feet. Atlanta-based Waypoint Residential purchased the property from Rodman Properties. David Oakley and Royce Emerson of Berkadia's Alabama office represented the seller in the transaction. [Real Estate Business Online]

11/13/2015 - Berkadia Facilitates Sale of Brookhaven Portfolio
Nine multifamily assets in Brookhaven have changed hands recently, in a transaction managed by Berkadia.

Berkadia recently completed a $75 million sale and financing for nine C-class multifamily assets located in Brookhaven. SP Brookhaven LLC, a partnership between a hedge fund and a local operator of undisclosed identity acquired the properties. The seller was Marquise at Brookhaven LLC of Atlanta.

The portfolio comprising 1,187 units was 98 percent occupied at the time of sale and the price represents around $63,000 per unit. A $61 million loan was used for the acquisition and small improvements on the properties and featured a 4.65 percent floating interest rate and full-term interest only. The three year facility was provided by Resource REI and represented 78 percent of total project costs.

Senior Directors Paul Vetter and Andrew Mays and Director Matt White Berkadia’s investment sales team represented the seller. Senior Managing Director Richard Levine of the firm's mortgage banking team spoke for the buyer in the transaction and negotiated the financing. [Multi-Housing News]

11/12/2015 - TruAmerica Acquires Greater Salt Lake City Multifamily Portfolio for $102M
Salt Lake City - TruAmerica Multifamily and the Guardian Life Insurance Company of America have completed their purchase of two apartments in metro Salt Lake City for $102 million. Both properties are of mid-1980s vintage and are about seven miles from one another on Redwood Road, one of the state’s busier thoroughfares.

The properties include the 486-unit Somerset Village Apartment Homes in West Valley City, and the 440-unit Southwillow Apartments in West Jordan. The seller was San Francisco-based Jackson Square Partners. Altogether, the properties are 99 percent leased.

TruAmerica plans to invest an additional $8 million to reposition the two properties to market to an increasing renter pool of young professionals and working families in Salt Lake City. The renovations will include new countertops, appliance packages, cabinets and flooring, as well as such common area upgrades as community outdoor kitchens, dog parks and pool enhancements.

"We see Salt Lake City as the perfect apartment market," said Greg Campbell, TruAmerica's senior managing director of acquisitions. New jobs, he added, are attracting an increasing number of Millennials to the area, helping make Utah into the nation’s youngest state, with 32 percent of its population under the age of 32, according to U.S. Census Bureau data. "We find that 18 to 31 year olds are much more likely to rent than to buy."

James Wadsworth and Greg Barratt of Berkadia represented both the buyer and seller in the transaction. The deal comes after TruAmerica's acquisition last month of Settler's Point, a 416-unit property in Salt Lake City, from Equus Capital Partners Ltd. for $46 million.

The L.A.-based TruAmerica entered the market in May with the acquisition of the Crossing at Daybreak, a 315-unit apartment property in South Jordan. The deals bring the total number of units under management in the Salt Lake City area for the company to 1,657. [Multi-Housing News]

11/10/2015 - This Week's LA Deal Sheet - Sales
San Sebastian Properties bought Villa Grande, a 78-unit apartment property in Reseda, for $21.5M. Built in 1987, the complex consists of all two- and three-bedroom individually deeded townhomes. Berkadia's Dean Zander and Vince Norris listed and sold the property, marking their seventh sale in the SF Valley in Q3. The property (Yolanda Avenue and Saticoy Street) attracted 120 interested buyers representing a variety of capital sources, including private investors, sponsored equity groups and condo converters. The buyer plans to spend $15k/unit in upgrades. [Real Estate Bisnow]

11/06/2015 - Berkadia's Tampa, Orlando Offices Arrange Sale of Two Properties in Florida
TAMPA & CLEARWATER, FLA. - Berkadia's Orlando and Tampa offices have arranged the sale of two Florida properties totaling nearly $53 million. Berkadia negotiated the sale and financing of Mainsail South Residences, a multifamily property located at 4711 S. Himes Ave. in Tampa. Jason Stanton of the Tampa office, along with Cole Whitaker and Hal Warren of the Orlando office, completed the sale on Sept. 10. Justin Ownby of the Tampa office negotiated the $25 million acquisition loan through Berkadia's Fannie Mae Program. The sellers were Mainsail Villas II LLC and Mainsail Villas Holdings LLC of Tampa. Avesta Acquisition LLC, of Tampa, was the buyer and plans to renovate the property's interior, exterior and common areas.

The 10-year loan features a 2.6 percent floating interest rate and a 30-year amortization schedule. Mainsail South Residences is a 319-unit property built in 1984. Unit amenities include fully equipped kitchens, ceiling fans, cable and Internet access, washer and dryer units, vaulted ceilings and patios or balconies. Select units have fireplaces. Community amenities include a swimming pool, Jacuzzi, sun deck, laundry facility, business center, clubhouse, recreation room, extra storage space and secured access gating. The property is 95 percent occupied and is located on a community lake with a pedestrian bridge to a waterfront trail. Located near Gandy Boulevard, Gandy Expressway and Dale Mabry Highway, Mainsail South Residences is less than one mile from Britton Plaza Shopping Center and 1.5 miles from Ballast Point Park.

Stanton, Whitaker and Warren also recently completed the $21.4 million sale of the Enclave at Northwood, a multifamily property located at 2390-2692 Enterprise Road East in Clearwater. Preston Giuliano Capital Partners was the buyer, and the seller was StoneBridge Investments. Built in 1984, Enclave at Northwood is a 188-unit property featuring one-, two- and three-bedroom floor plans. Unit amenities include fully equipped kitchens with updated cabinets and appliances, balconies or patios, ceiling fans, washer and dryer hookups, window coverings and fireplaces. Community amenities include two swimming pools, a fitness center, two lighted tennis courts and 24-hour emergency maintenance. Enclave at Northwood is located near Florida State Route 19 and is seven miles from downtown Clearwater. [Real Estate Business Online]

11/05/2015 - Berkadia Negotiates Sale and Financing of Utah Multifamily Property
Berkadia announced the recent sale and financing of a multifamily property in Taylorsville, Utah.

Salt Lake City - Berkadia announced the recent sale and financing of a multifamily property in Taylorsville, Utah. James Wadsworth and Greg Barratt of the Salt Lake City office completed the sale of Settler's Point on September 24, 2015. Managing Director Allan Freedman of the West Los Angeles office negotiated the interim acquisition loan through Berkadia's Freddie Mac Program.

The seller, Equus Capital Partners, decided to sell to capitalize on the price appreciation happening for this age and quality of multifamily asset in the market. The buyer, TruAmerica Multifamily, was interested in capitalizing on Salt Lake City's growing economy and has plans to upgrade the property's units.

The seven-year loan highlights a 2.45 percent floating interest rate and three years of interest-only payments followed by a 30-year amortization schedule.

"The Salt Lake City economy is currently on the upswing, and the entire metro area is becoming more and more enticing from an investment standpoint. We received 24 written offers, which is an indication of the strong buyer demand," Wadsworth said.

Madison at Settler's Point is a 416-unit property built in 1984. Unit amenities feature fully equipped kitchens, balconies or patios, cable and Internet access, walk-in closets, fireplaces, ceiling fans, and washer and dryer hookups. Select units are furnished. Community amenities include two heated swimming pools, two clubhouses, a hot tub, playground, fitness center with a weight roomk and two tennis courts. The property is currently 99 percent occupied.

The property, situated near I-15 at I-215, is one mile from Salt Lake City Community College and 2 1/2 miles from Valley Fair Mall. Top employers in the area include Discover Financial Services, American Express, Saint Mark’s Hospital, Zions Bank and Utah Transit Authority.

"We were able to work closely with the buyer to negotiate excellent loan terms," Freedman said. "The low initial interest rate and flexible prepayment were both attractive. Moreover, between the application process and eventual closing, we worked to get the client an additional five percent in proceeds."

Apartment vacancy in the Salt Lake City metro area stood at 4.6 percent in the third quarter, while rents averaged $974 per month, up 3.4 percent year over year. [Multi-Housing News]

11/04/2015 - Berkadia Arranges Sale of Student Housing Community
A student housing community in Austin changes hands.

Berkadia has arranged the sale of Lonestar Lofts, a student housing community in Austin's West Campus submarket. Forrest Bass, a senior director of the Austin office, completed the sale on Sept. 28. The seller was a local private partnership, and the buyer was a private investor from New York City. Financial details about the transaction were not disclosed.

"There continues to be tremendous demand for multifamily properties in Austin, and this is attracting significant interest from local, out-of-state and international investors alike," said Bass. "This transaction marked the buyer's first acquisition in Austin. The buyer was drawn to the property's strong infill location, stable operating history, strong occupancy rate and steady rent growth over past years."

Lonestar Lofts is located at 2408 Leon St., one mile from the University of Texas and two miles from downtown Austin. Major employers in the area include St. David's Medical Center, Southwest Airlines, Texas Department of Transportation, University of Texas at Austin, and University Medical Center.

Built in 1971, Lonestar Lofts offers 50 units, including studio, one-, two-, three, and four-bedroom floor plans. Community amenities include a swimming pool with a pergola lounge area, barbecue grill, and parking garage. Units feature stained concrete floors, black appliances, washers and dryers, and a loft-style layout. [Multi-Housing News]

10/28/2015 - Dealmaker: Berkadia Closes Retail and Multifamily Deals in N.Y., Ariz.
Berkadia, New York, closed a $15.4 million loan for Latham Crossing, a 100,000-square-foot retail property in Latham, N.Y.

Managing Director John DiCrocco of Berkadia's New York City office closed the 10-year, fixed-rate loan through a conduit lender.

"There were several challenges in this deal, including a short-term ground lease that needed to be re-negotiated, an extremely short time frame before the borrower went into maturity default and maximum proceeds for a deal in a challenging submarket," DiCrocco said.

DiCrocco said the 75 percent loan-to-value ratio financing had 1.25 times debt-service coverage. The loan included two years of interest-only payments.

PetSmart and Staples anchor the fully occupied Latham Crossing center at 609 Troy Schenectady Road.

In another deal, Berkadia represented Aerie Development LLC when it sold 184-unit Tucson, Ariz. apartment property Avilla Preserve to M3 Multifamily, Santa Barbara, Calif. for $27.6 million.

Berkadia Senior Managing Director Art Wadlund and Associate Clint Wadlund of the firm's Tucson office completed the sale on October 9. The sale reflects a per-unit price of $150,000.

"This property is located in a submarket with very few Class A assets," Art Wadlund said. "As such, M3 Multifamily will be able to capitalize on the pent-up demand for luxury apartments." He said the buyer likes the property's low-density one-story layout and its recent construction.

Clint Wadlund said asking rents at top-tier properties in the area reach $1,300 per month, "[so] there is certainly investment demand for this product despite the low level of supply available for sale." [Mortgage Bankers Association]

10/27/2015 - Berkadia Arranges Sale of Multifamily Asset in Moreno Valley
Moreno Valley, Calif. - Bridge Investment Group LLC of Salt Lake City has expanded its Inland Empire multifamily portfolio with the acquisition of The Reserve at Rancho Belago, a 176-unit apartment community located at 15100 Moreno Beach Drive in Moreno Valley, Calif.

Bristol Brokerage Company Inc. of San Diego sold the property for $30.1 million, or $171,023 per unit.

Senior Directors Margie Molloy and Spencer Scott of the Inland Empire and North Los Angeles Berkadia offices, respectively, completed the transaction on October 20th.

Bridge Investment is now planning to continue the property's revamp, which has been initiated by the seller.

Completed in 2005, The Reserve at Rancho Belago offers a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom floor plans. Unit amenities include fully equipped kitchens with pantries, crown molding, vaulted ceilings, custom lighting, fire places, cable and Internet access, full-size side-by-side washers and dryers, and extra storage. Select units feature walk-in closets, hardwood inspired floors and detached garages. Community amenities include barbeque and picnic areas, a resort-style swimming pool with fountain, clubhouse, business center, conference room and fitness center.

The community is situated near Interstate 215 and State Route 60, within 10 miles of the Moreno Valley Mall at Towngate and less than five miles from the World Logistics Center. The area's top employers include Riverside County Regional Medical Center, March Air Reserve Base, and numerous distribution centers including Walgreens, Proctor and Gamble, Amazon, Ross Dress for Less and Sketchers.

"The buyer saw The Reserve as an opportunity to purchase a value-add asset and expand its Inland Empire portfolio," Molloy said in prepared remarks. "The property, and the Southern California region overall, holds a great deal of investment potential, and the buyer plans to continue renovations and upgrades."

According to Berkadia, during this year's third quarter, the metro-wide vacancy rate in the Inland Empire decreased 40 basis points to 4.4 percent, while average asking rents reached $1,367 per month. [Multi-Housing News]

10/26/2015 - SD Apt. Owners: A Tale of Two Cities
SAN DIEGO - With small and large assets in the market, both private and institutional investors tend to play in the San Diego multifamily investment market, Berkadia's president of investment sales Brent Long tells As we recently reported, the firm's San Diego office added five new professionals to its investment-sales team, led by new managing directors Ed Rosen and John Chu - formerly of Cushman & Wakefield. We spoke with Long, Rosen and Chu about the new team, the multifamily market and how San Diego’s multifamily market compares to others in Southern California. What was the impetus behind adding the new San Diego sales team?

Long: We are an investment-sales and mortgage-banking company with a strong presence in Southern California and San Diego. In fact, the San Diego office was one of the early offices we opened in the late '90s. Our goal was to build on the strength we have here on the private-capital side and by adding what is clearly the best institutional and asset-sales team in San Diego and the Western US. We wanted to take what's been a good office for us and make it a leading regional office that covers both the private-capital and institutional-sales arenas and an integrated mortgage-banking team. It's integrated for San Diego and Southern California. This team has been a dominant player in San Diego for more than 25 years and is also very strong in Southern California overall. We are super excited to have them as part of the team, and they're really going to lead our efforts here in the mid to large institutional space for apartment sales. What does the addition of the new team say about the multifamily market here?

Long: The market is really changing, and you need to have a fully integrated platform to service the needs of the market.

Rosen: Southern California is a core market, and what we're seeing is that those markets are shrinking in size. Southern California will always be one, but because institutional capital wants to be in those core markets, we will leverage off Berkadia's platform with its expertise in equity and debt and use it in combination with what we bring to the table to provide extra services to our clients.

Long: It's not just the San Diego market - it's really the Southern California marketplace. There's tremendous activity across all those markets and they need to be serviced in unison. We will work with the rest of the team throughout the US - we have five offices in Southern California and 75 offices nationwide. This builds on the legacy of our office in San Diego. This is actually an expanded office, a new regional office for us, since we moved out of our existing space into expanded space and consolidated the team into one location in La Jolla. How does the multifamily investment market in San Diego compare to other Southern California markets?

Rosen: There are a lot of similarities. They are all supply-constrained markets with limited development opportunities. More assets than in the past are owned by institutional groups that are less included to have more volatility in their portfolio. They're looking for more long-term holds.

Long: There are two primary parts to the market. San Diego has a large number of small to mid-size assets owned by small sponsors or private investors, and on the large side a lot of larger institutional-grade assets. It's a tale of two cities, and they do work together in some respects.

Rosen: Most of the investors with assets in California would like to diversify so that they have properties in L.A., San Diego and San Francisco. It's good to have offices in all of those areas with which to share info.

Chu: The supply-constrained nature of our market keeps returns and prices at an aggressive level. It keeps people coming in from other markets where there is more supply, and everyone wants to be in the Golden State right now. It's a great place to be with the Berkadia platform and collaborating with all of our offices in California and in other states. What else should our readers know about this move?

Long: Ed and John and their team have some very significant stats behind them and a history that is unequalled in most parts of the country. Over their careers they've traded more than 80,000 units and in excess of $12 billion in Southern California. It’s dramatic in terms of what they've been able to accomplish, and they can continue to accomplish more by building on what we have and adding on the capital markets element.

Our firm is in a very strong growth mode. It has grown dramatically in terms of platform and presence and debt-and-investment sales. We are dramatically expanding our mortgage-banking and investment-sales platform. [GlobeSt]

10/21/2015 - Rare Broken Condominium Community in Scottsdale, AZ Listed by Berkadia
Berkadia is pleased to announce the exclusive listing of The Allison Condominiums, a 152-unit (out of 332 units) broken condominium community, located at 14145 North 92nd Street in Scottsdale, AZ. The seller has engaged Mark Forrester, Ric Holway and Dan Cheyne of Berkadia's Phoenix office to market the property. For additional information on the property, please visit the [Dedicated Property Website.]

10/16/2015 - Berkadia Brokers Sale of Two Apartment Communities in Florida for $18M
MELBOURNE AND PALM BAY, FLA. - Berkadia Real Estate Advisors has brokered the sale of two apartment communities in Brevard County for a combined $18 million. The assets include the 138-unit Park Village located at 3099 Park Village Way in Melbourne and the 112-unit Malabar Lakes located at 1018 Malabar Lakes Drive in Palm Bay. White Eagle Property Group LLC purchased Park Village for $10.1 million and Malabar Lakes for $7.9 million. Cole Whitaker, Hal Warren and Jason Stanton of Berkadia represented the seller, Deancurt Melbourne LLC, in the portfolio transaction. [Real Estate Business Online]

10/15/2015 - Australian real estate investors plan to invest $100M; buy West Austin property
An Australian investment company is gung-ho on Austin - with plans to spend up to $100 million in the local housing market, according to its broker.

EG Funds recently completed its second multifamily acquisition in a premium West Austin neighborhood.

The company - which has offices in Sydney and Melbourne, Australia - also has boots on the ground in Austin with Kate Braybrook directing its U.S. investments.

In about two years, EG has acquired some $30 million in U.S. assets, according to an announcement.

Forrest Bass of Berkadia in Austin handled the most recent transaction - a 44-unit apartment building at 807 W. Lynn St. near the upscale restaurants Jeffrey's and Josephine House. Built in 1969, the apartment complex is called "The Castile."

Though the purchase price was not disclosed locally, EG's Australian website indicates the company paid $9.2 million, or $209,090 per unit.

Braybrook confirmed that the apartments will be incrementally updated into condos and sold as current leases mature.

Records at the Travis Central Appraisal District indicate the apartments had been owned for less than a year by an entity named 807 West Lynn LLC with a local address that corresponds to that of First Austin Properties.

The complex most recently was valued at $4,822,770.

Berkadia's Bass said EG previously purchased SoCo at Alpine, an apartment complex in South Austin off Alpine Road between South First Street and South Congress Avenue. The 66 units remain rental properties. TCAD records show EG purchased that property in May. It was most recently valued at $1,974,700.

EG also owns about 60 to 70 single family homes in Austin, which are leased, Bass said.

He said EG plans to invest about $100 million in the Austin market.

Bass said investment sales for multifamily properties in Austin are headed for another record year, led by international buyers.

"We've seen mainly Mexican nationals and Japanese conglomerates, but this is our first group we've handled from Australia," Bass said. [Austin Business Journal]

10/14/2015 - Berkadia Arranges Sale of Two LA Multifamily Assets
The L.A. multifamily properties known as Catalina Apartments and Hobart Apartments were recently sold for a combined $12.1 million. The transaction was arranged by Berkadia Managing Director Brent Sprenkle who worked on behalf of both parties, a Brentwood-based buyer and the seller, a San Francisco-based investment fund.

Catalina Apartments is located at 862 S. Catalina St. and totals 40 residences. The 87 year-old property's unit mix consists of studio and one-bedroom units.

Hobart Apartments is located at 817 S. Hobart Blvd., and offers a similar range of floorplans. Built in 1926, the multifamily asset offers 47 apartments.

The two properties are located in the bustling Koreatown submarket, and offer proximity to State Route 110, the I-10, and the I-101. Employment centers in the area include the University of Southern California and Paramount Pictures. According to Sprenkle, the area has been undergoing a process of property appreciation and gentrification over the past few years. Vacancy in the West Los Angeles market is trending downward with average levels now at around four percent.

As the latest Matrix Monthly report shows, Los Angeles metro rent growth outpaced Yardi Matrix's forecast, having recorded 6.4 percent appreciation through September. The real estate data provider projected growth of 5.8 percent for the end of the year. [Multi-Housing News]

10/09/2015 - Cedar Creek in Fresno, CA Listed by Berkadia for $6.5M
Berkadia is pleased to announce the exclusive listing of Cedar Creek, located at 4893-4894 East Lane Avenue in Fresno, CA. The asking price for the 106-unit apartment community is $6,500,000. The seller has engaged Robin C. Kane and Gordon J. Larkin of Berkadia's Fresno office, Dean Zander of Berkadia's West Los Angeles office and Vince Norris of Berkadia's North Los Angeles office to market the property. Cedar Creek is also part of a 4-property, 410-unit portfolio. For additional information on the property, please visit the [Dedicated Property Website.]

10/08/2015 - Big Skokie project's rented condos put up for sale
Real estate investors with a taste for fractured condominium developments—post-crash projects with lots of units that have been rented rather than sold—now can buy into one of the biggest of its kind in the Chicago suburbs.

The developer of Optima Old Orchard Woods in Skokie hired a broker to sell 173 rental condos in the property, a 660-unit colossus across the Edens Expressway from the Westfield Old Orchard shopping mall.

The developer, Glencoe-based Optima, finished the project at 9725 Woods Drive as the financial markets were melting down in 2008. Like many developers stuck with lots of unsold units, Optima decided to ride out the condo bust by renting them instead.

It has turned out to be a good decision for many developers, thanks to a prolonged boom in the apartment market. But condo sales and prices are recovering, creating an opportunity for Optima to sell the units it couldn't several years ago.

"The market is really coming back," said Tara Hovey, senior vice president at Optima.

Ralph DePasquale, senior vice president at Berkadia, which has been hired to sell the rented units, said he is receiving interest both from investors interested in buying the units in bulk and selling them off individually and from conventional apartment investors that would keep renting them out.

Hovey expects a buyer to sell off the units as condos, considering the strength of the for-sale market. She touts the building's proximity to Old Orchard and the Harms Woods Forest Preserve as selling points.

Optima could convert the units back to condos itself, but Hovey said the firm is busy with other developments in Arizona and Chicago's Streeterville neighborhood, where it's building Optima Chicago Center II, a 490-unit apartment tower. Optima recently hired a broker to sell another 325-unit rental high-rise it recently completed next door, Optima Chicago Center.

Monthly rents for the Skokie condos range from $1,560 to $5,500 and average about $2.00 per square foot, Hovey said. Resale prices of condos in the building have been steadily increasing, according to Berkadia marketing flier for the units. The average resale price exceeds $360,000, up 20 percent from a year earlier, the flier says.

Berkadia has not put an asking price on the units, and Hovey and DePasquale declined to say how much they expected them to fetch. But at $300,000 apiece - factoring in an estimated discount for buying them in bulk - 173 units would cost about $52 million. [Crain's Chicago Business]

10/07/2015 - Dominant SoCal Team Joins Berkadia
SAN DIEGO-Berkadia says it is being joined by one of the top multifamily investment sales teams in the Western US. The additions include two managing directors, Ed Rosen and John Chu, who previously served as executive directors for Cushman & Wakefield. At Berkadia, Rosen and Chu will lead a team of three additional members in the company's newly expanded regional San Diego office. Combined their team has completed the sale of more than 80,000 units with a value in excess of more than $12 billion. Collectively the five–person team brings with them more than 70 years of multifamily sales experience.

Rosen and Chu are known as the dominant multifamily advisors in the San Diego marketplace, where they have been ranked as top producers for the past 20 years. Rosen and Chu specialize in the representation of large, institutional-sized deals and have completed sales in excess of $1.6 billion over the past 36 months.

"The addition of Ed and John demonstrates Berkadia’s continued commitment to bring the best advisors to its integrated mortgage banking, investment sales and servicing platform," said Brent Long, president of investment sales at Berkadia. "We are thrilled to welcome them to our investment sales team in San Diego as we continue to grow our presence and service offerings in the Southern California commercial real estate market."

Team member, Kyle Pinkalla, joins Berkadia as a director and will concentrate on the larger institutional grade assets. He has been active in the multifamily sector for more than 10 years.

Erin Dammen, vice president, will assist with marketing and client relations. She has been in the real estate industry for more than seven years. Tyler Sinks, associate director, will assist the team on mid- to large-size private capital assets in the greater San Diego area.

Across the company's 70 offices, multifamily investment sales and mortgage banking production exceeded $17 billion in 2014. Sales and finance volumes are on pace to surpass this number for the current calendar year.

Berkadia, a joint venture of Berkshire Hathaway and Leucadia National Corporation, is an industry-leading commercial real estate company providing comprehensive capital solutions and investment sales advisory and research services for multifamily and commercial properties. [GlobeSt]

10/06/2015 - Valley Apartments Sell High on Condo Potential
A Sherman Oaks apartment complex with 33 units individually deeded as condominiums has sold for $19.5 million, or nearly $600,000 a unit.

The sales price translates to roughly $388 per square foot, far above the average square foot sales price of around $210 for similar properties in Sherman Oaks this year, according to real estate data provider CoStar Group Inc.

"It was a huge price, for sure a high-water mark," said Brent Sprenkle, a partner in the El Segundo office of Berkadia Real Estate Advisors who represented the seller, Van Nuys-based developer Shapiro Ben-Basat.

The El Dorado Villas, a 50,000-square-foot property at 4510 Murietta Ave., was built as a luxury condo project in 2008, but Shapiro Ben-Basat decided not to sell the individual units as planned because it was a low point in the housing market. "Instead, they leased it out as a luxury apartment building and operated it for seven years," Sprenkle said.

The high sales price was achieved because of the potential to sell off individual units without having to undergo a condominium conversion process, and because the units are high-end, with an average size of 1,460 square feet. They feature distressed hardwood floors, handmade cabinetry and vaulted ceilings.

The buyer is an Indonesian investor who purchased the entire building with one escrow. "The buyer is going to be really happy long term because the rents will appreciate very well and the exit strategy is obvious since the units are individually deeded as condos," Sprenkle said. The buyer was represented by Calabasas brokerage Marcus & Millichap. [San Fernando Valley Business Journal]

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