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Multifamily Mania

Recent commercial mortgage activity

September 10, 2007

By COCO SALAZAR


photo of Coco Salazar

Many multifamily mortgages made their way through the commercial pipeline, while one deal on a Detroit motel closed despite the recent fallout in asset-backed markets.

Arbor Commercial Funding LLC funded a 10-year loan of nearly $1.9 million that allowed the borrower to acquire Second & Prentis, a 60-unit complex in Detroit, Mich. The financing amortizes on a 30-year schedule and carries a note rate of 6.60 percent.

Over in West Seneca, N.Y., Hidden Village Apartments secured a 10-year refinance loan of nearly $4.1 million, New York-based Arbor said. The loan for the 104-unit complex amortizes over 30-years, with five years interest only, and has a note rate of 5.83 percent.

A 10-year purchase loan of nearly $5.3 million was collateralized by the Stafford Oaks, a 176-unit multifamily complex in Stafford, Texas. The financing must be repaid at a rate of 5.87 percent and amortizes on a 30-year schedule, Arbor said.

The Highland Ridge Apartments in Waterbury, Conn., found a $7.2 million refinance loan through Arbor as well, a news release stated. The Fannie Mae, 10-year loan for the 147-unit complex amortizes on a 30-year schedule, with five years interest-only, and has a note rate of 5.60 percent.

Arbor also reportedly provided a $10.9 million Fannie-approved loan for the acquisition of Hillcroft Apartments, a 381-unit complex in Houston, Texas. The 10-year loan amortizes on a 30-year schedule and must be repaid a rate of 5.85 percent.

Van Cortland Village, a three-building portfolio with 240 units in Bronx, N.Y., secured a $19.6 million loan arranged by Meridian Capital Group. The loan for the multifamily property has a rate of 6.5 percent over a five-year term, according to an announcement by Meridian, a New York-based broker.

A portfolio of 15 retail properties located throughout Central Florida collateralized a 15-year, fixed-rate loan of $28 million funded by Prudential Mortgage Capital Co. The properties are owned by an Applebee's franchisee and are improved with restaurant structures, the commercial arm of New Jersey-based Prudential Financial Inc. reported.

Quarter Circle Capital LLC announced it acquired a two-building office complex in Naperville, Ill., through a $12 million direct, off-market and all-cash transaction from a lender, storing an additional $4 million for capital improvements and leasing. QC Capital picked up the defaulted first mortgage note on Park Place Office Complex, which measures about $145,000 square feet, in June and then obtained the fee interest by negotiating a deed in lieu of foreclosure with the borrower.

"As debt-for-control buyers, we target transactions like this, where the underlying asset value exceeds the purchase price of the associated distressed or defaulted debt we acquire," said QC Capital Chief Executive James R. Puckett in the announcement.

Cousins Properties Inc. affiliate 250 Williams Street LLC recently executed a $136 million commercial-mortgage-backed-securities loan with J. P. Morgan Chase Bank N.A. The Inforum, a 995,000-square-foot office building in Atlanta, Ga., secures the 10-year, non-recourse loan, which is subject to customary non-recourse "carve-outs" and carries an interest rate of about 6.45 percent, with interest only the first four years and thereafter payments based on a 30-year amortization schedule.

Over in Sterling Heights, Mich., the Best Western Sterling Inn found a $17 million first mortgage through Vista Capital Co. The 10-year fixed-rate financing was provided by an affiliate of a major U.S. money center bank and is the second hotel loan California-based Vista has arranged in the Detroit area in the past four months. The borrower will replace a floating rate facility, thereby significantly reduce financing costs. The 246-room, luxury hotel holds 16,750 square feet of meeting and banquet space and a 33,000-square-foot indoor water park, according to a news release.

"The closing of this loan is particularly noteworthy because of the obstacles overcome by Vista Capital, which included the sensitivity of lending in the Detroit area and the fallout in the CMBS market," Vista said in the written statement.

Hudson Realty Capital LLC announced it purchased a $16.1 million B-Note investment secured by three properties in Philadelphia, Pa. The collateral consists of a first mortgage on a 5.41-acre mixed-use development site, a first mortgage on a 13.5-acre site that holds a vacant 290,000-square-foot industrial building with 25,000 square feet of office space, and a mezzanine loan on a condominium development that will contain 72 residential units and 10,500 square feet of retail space.

"This was an exceptional opportunity for [Hudson] to participate with a large investment bank in a high-quality, yet highly structured loan," the New York-based real estate private equity firm,said in the announcement. "We were able to facilitate a loan for the senior lender, with whom we have closed other transactions, while at the same time booking a loan that offers an outstanding risk adjusted return."

StanCorp Mortgage Investors funded a $3 million loan for Warehouse 1800 LLC, Florida-based commercial lender Thomas D. Wood and Co. announced. The 20-year loan with a 25-year amortization carries a fixed-rate of 6.625 percent. The loan-to-value for the eight-building, 72,502 square-foot multi-tenant warehouse project in Pembroke Park, Fla., is 60 percent.

StanCorp also provided a $600,000 financing for the Caribbean-Gulf Container Repair ground lease in Fort Pierce, Fla. The 11.27-acre, owner-occupied, single-tenant ground lease secures the 20-year loan, which amortizes over 20 years and its first five years carry a fixed rate of 6.5 percent, Thomas D. Wood reported.

Reliable Defeasance LLC has completed over 50 defeasance transactions valued at nearly $1 billion since launching six months ago, according to an announcement. The Los Angeles-based firm attributed its growth to a high level of transparency.

Defeasance is a process that helps commercial mortgage borrowers leverage their holdings by substituting securities for the original real estate collateral, Reliable reported. Many commercial loans are packaged within CMBS loan pools, and existing loans typically can't be prepaid early. Through defeasance, a borrower is able to refinance debt and unlock equity in the property with no adverse effect on securitization because interest and principal payments are made uninterrupted.

Defeasance is achieved through a carefully managed bid process and coordination with rating agencies, accountants, custodians, attorneys, trustees, successor borrowers and other parties, and Reliable said it works with all major servicers as well -- including Midland, Capmark, Wells Fargo, Wachovia Bank, Bank of America, and KeyBank.


Coco Salazar is an associate editor and staff writer for MortgageDaily.com.

e-mail: [email protected]


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