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Jun. 6, 2014

Prime Property Investors Buys Houston-Area Apartments

eafl2 thumbnailBy Dees Stribling, Contributing Editor

Stafford, Texas—Prime Property Investors (PPI), a Chicago-area company, has acquired a 306-unit apartment community in metro Houston for an unspecified price. The company says it plans to renovate and reposition the property over the next two years.

Located on Fountain Lake Dr., Estates at Fountain Lake (formerly known as Alexan Fountain Lake) is on a 13.6-acre site and consists of 14 three-story garden-style buildings. PPI acquired the property from Dallas-based Trammell Crow Residential (TCR).

The property includes 198 one-bedroom, one-bath apartments and 108 two-bedroom, two-bath units, as well as 391 parking spaces. All units have private balconies or patios and feature nine-foot ceilings. Estates at Fountain Lake currently 100 percent leased, with average rents around $1,300 per month.

PPI plans to execute a value-add strategy to meet the increasing demand for upgraded, luxury apartments in the area, according to co-CEO Barbara J. Gaffen. Estates at Fountain Lake dates from 1998, and is located in Fort Bend County, which is southwest of Houston. The county’s apartment submarket is 96 percent occupied, with rental rates that have grown 12 percent over the last six months.

Renovations to the common areas at will include enhancing the pool with a new sun deck, cabanas and outdoor grilling area; adding a “bark park” to accommodate residents with pets; and upgrading the fitness center. The management office and clubhouse will also be renovated, and the property’s landscaping and signage will be spiffed up.

This isn’t the first time PPI has worked with TCR. Last fall, companies entered into a JV to develop a new-construction garden-style apartment in Houston called Alexan Auburn Lakes, which will see its first move-ins this August. On the heels of that partnership, PPI was a “natural choice” in acquiring Alexan Fountain Lake, according to TCR.

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