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Time To Square Off

Last week's commercial mortgage loan activity

January 28, 2002


Venture West Funding Inc. said that it has arranged $13.11 million in mortgages for a 308 unit Southern California apartment portfolio owned by various partnerships. Venture West said that the portfolio, which is controlled by two investors, was financed with three local financial institutions. In addition to commenting on the complexity of financing buildings in low-to-moderate income areas, Hal Rose, president of Venture West, noted the company's 56% growth in 2001.

SWH Funding Corp., in conjunction with Newbridge Realty Capital, LLC, funded a $2.7 million acquisition and pre-development bridge-loan to Hamilton Plaza, LLC, a single-asset, bankruptcy remote entity. Loan proceeds were used to make an initial $2 million payment on the purchase of .79 acres of land, pay project costs such as the architectural fee, set up reserves for taxes and insurance along with the permanent loan commitment fee, and pay closing costs. SWH says "The Hamilton," located in White Plains, New York, is fully zoned and entitled for construction of the planned 13-story, 106-unit luxury apartment building. SWH principal Sanford S. Herrick said, "the borrower is also a highly experienced developer with great success in similar residential projects." Herrick added that funding by both construction and mezzanine lenders is anticipated early this year.

A division of Key Commercial Real Estate, Key Global Capital, said it recently closed a $24 million equity letter of credit transaction that helped finance the construction of the 321-unit, 41-story multifamily project near Times Square in Manhattan. Key said that the letter of credit, which enhanced bonds that were issued by the New York State Housing Authority, also included funds used to purchase nearly $7 million in bonds through Key's investment bank. Key Commercial Real Estate also purchased a $22.5 million portion of the syndicated first mortgage, and just recently completed a rate-swap on $113 million of bonds through Key's derivatives group.

In its announcement of fourth quarter results, real estate investment trust Lexington Corporate Properties said that it obtained $60.7 million in non-recourse mortgage financing at a fixed rate of 7.27% and $39.4 million in variable rate mortgage financing at a current rate of 5.12%.

Sam Garcia has been in mortgage lending since 1980, and is managing editor of MortgageDaily.com. He also owns and operates CloseNow.com, a real estate portal site.

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