Avanath Acquires Boston Workforce Housing

The purchase of the 207-unit Morton Village Apartments in Mattapan, Mass., marks the company's entrance into the Boston metro.
Morton Village Apartments. Image courtesy of CoStar Group Inc.

Real estate firm Avanath Capital Management has acquired Morton Village Apartments, a 207-unit workforce housing community in the Boston borough of Mattapan, Mass. The seller is an affiliate of Mirak Properties. This represents Avanath’s initial foray into the Boston market.

Morton Village aligns with Avanath’s strategy of preserving affordability by acquiring, improving and operating affordable and workforce apartment properties nationwide. As part of the purchase, Avanath Capital Management worked closely with local Boston officials to ensure Morton Village will remain affordable to residents.

“Buying in the middle of the pandemic, we couldn’t get most of our team from (company headquarters in Irvine) California to Boston,” Daryl Carter, Avanath Capital Management chairman & CEO, told Multi-Housing News. “That was probably the biggest challenge. But we do have team members in New York and D.C. we were able to send there to execute the transaction. Running a national business, we’ve found every state has its own visa policy. That turned out to be another one of the challenges.”

Vintage building

Built by Mirak Properties in 1965, Morton Village is comprised of four individual, four-story elevated buildings. Apartment selection ranges from studios to two-bedroom units, measuring from 525 to 1,250 square feet in size. Apartments feature individual air conditioning, high-speed Internet access and in some units private balconies or patios. Among the common-area amenities are four on-premise laundry facilities.

The property is strategically situated next to the Morton Street MBTA commuter and rail station and 2 miles removed from exits 11 and 12 on Interstate 93. This proximity enables residents to benefit from convenient access to job centers.

“We own other properties of this vintage, and know some of the typical challenges we have to deal with in these instances,” Carter said. “The basic bones and structure of the building are very sound. There are some issues we have to address, but nothing out of the ordinary. And we are working with the residents on issues we have heard about from them. We listen to residents on every acquisition and try to address those issues.”

Attorneys Tatiana Gutierrez, Jeffrey Sacks, Ruth Silman and Ali Walendziak of the law firm Nixon Peabody represented Avanath as legal counsel in the Morton Village purchase.

“I give the city of Boston a lot of credit,” Carter said, adding city officials “were a very, very important part of keeping the exchange positive. I think we have a very positive outcome. And we think this is a potential model we can replicate in similar situations in Boston and elsewhere.”

Several months ago, an Avanath executive discussed affordable housing investment strategies during the coronavirus era.