UDR/MetLife JV Completes $630M NYC Acquisition

UDR/MetLife complete a $630 joint venture acquisition in New York; Beech Street Capital closes 2011 with $2.2 billion in multifamily financing; and Walker & Dunlop supplies a $24.7 million refi under Fannie Mae Early Rate Lock.

Columbus Square

New York—UDR has continued its Manhattan buying spree with a $630 million joint venture acquisition with MetLife. The transaction builds on an original joint venture partnership that began in November 2010 with a seven community acquisition. The now 12 asset joint venture portfolio has an approximate value of $1.3 billion.

The five newly acquired assets, known collectively as Columbus Square, are located on three ‘super blocks’ that span 97th to 100thStreets along Columbus Avenue in Manhattan’s Upper West Side. The five high-rises total 710-units, with an average monthly rent of $3,924 per unit. The combined occupancy stands strong at 95.6 percent.

“We are pleased to be expanding our relationship with MetLife through the formation of a second joint venture that increases our ownership interests in high-quality apartment communities that were all acquired in off-market transactions,” says Tom Toomey, president and chief executive officer of UDR.  “These latest transactions speak to the success of the first UDR/MetLife joint venture and the opportunities available to us to further grow our partnership with MetLife in the future.”

Amenities at Columbus Square include a fitness center; doormen; concierge services; nearly 90,000 square feet of landscaped, elevated terraces; resident lounges; and a community pool. There is also 400,000 square feet of ground floor retail, which while not acquired by the venture, will certainly serve the residents nonetheless.

The acquisition was partially funded through a combination of a 10-year-fixed- and floating-rate debt totaling $302.3 million at an average rate of 3.8 percent from Fannie Mae. THe joint venture also assumed $363 million of debt associated with the seven communities contributed from the first phase of the joint venture.

This transaction brings UDR to its goal of $1.8 billion invested in New York. The REIT first entered Manhattan in 2011 with the $260.8 million acquisition of 10 Hanover Square in the Financial District last spring. In July the firm announced that it has acquired Rivergate in Murray Hill and 21 Chelsea in Chelsea for a $443 million and $138 million, respectively. In August UDR announced the acquisition of Dwell95, also in the Financial District, for $325 million.

Beech Street Capital doubles multifamily financing volume in 2011

Bethesda, Md.—Beech Street Capital LLC has announced that it provided $2.2 billion in multifamily financing in 2011, more than doubling its performance in 2010, the company’s first year.

“This was really a breakthrough year for us,” says Grace Huebscher, Beech Street’s president and chief executive officer. “The word is clearly getting out among borrowers that Beech Street is committed to providing an extraordinary level of service and executive.”

The company doubled its Fannie Mae business and more than tripled its Freddie Mac business. Beech Street plans to build on this momentum in 2012.

“We have the range of products and the in-house expertise to more than meet the needs of virtually any multifamily borrower,” Huebscher adds.

Walker & Dunlop supplies $24.7M refi under Fannie Mae Early Rate Lock

Huntsville, Ala.—Walker & Dunlop LLC announced that it recently provided $24,700,000 in financing for Bridgewater Apartments, a garden-style residential apartment community located in Huntsville, Ala.

The refinance loan was structured with a 10-year term and a 30-year amortization under Fannie Mae’s Early Rate Lock Program. The loan was underwritten to a 75 percent loan-to-value with a 1.25 debt-service coverage ratio.

Bridgewater Apartments is a 334-unit gated apartment development built in 2008. The multifamily property offers one-, two-, and three-bedroom models in 17 residential buildings. All of the units feature fully-equipped kitchens, washer/dryer connections, and a sunroom, patio or balcony. Community amenities include an outdoor swimming pool, lighted tennis court, car care facility, entertainment lodge, and a clubhouse with a cyber café, business center, and fitness room.

Troy Marek, Real Estate Capital Markets, originated the loan. Will Baker, Walker & Dunlop vice president, Multifamily Finance, led the Walker & Dunlop team.