$82M deal reflects hot market

Two apartment deals pushing $82.7M point to strong multifamily market in NC


CHARLOTTE, NC Autumn Park in Charlotte traded hands for $48.9 million and the Lincoln Green Apartments in Greensboro traded for $33.75 million.

Dean Smith of Apartment Realty Advisors’ North Carolina office, represented the sellers in both deals. Smith says that 90% of the firm’s business involves deals in Charlotte and Raleigh-Durham, and in secondary markets such as the Triad. He said the secondary markets are getting competitive because they offer “good quality assets and much better yields.” In addition, Charlotte and Raleigh-Durham are hot markets now because of strong job growth. Charlotte added approximately 30,000 jobs in 2005, and Raleigh-Durham added approximately 35,000 jobs over the past 12 months, Smith says.

UBS acquired Autumn Park from Cornerstone Real Estate Advisers, LLC. The 586-unit property sale equaled $83,447 per unit.

“Autumn Park is nearly 10 years old but is still considered a class A property for the market,” Smith says. “We’ve seen replacement costs on class A properties jump from the $90,000s per unit to the mid-$100,000s–$115,000 to $120,000 per unit.” The increase is a result in escalating land and construction costs over the past 12 to 18 months, he adds.

The property is in the heart of University Research Park adjacent to Wachovia’s 10,000-employee call center. Autumn Park features 13 floor plans, and attached and detached garages. Community amenities include a recently renovated clubhouse, two business centers, two fitness centers, two swimming pools and two lighted tennis courts. The occupancy rate averaged 95% in 2005.

Steven D. Bell acquired Lincoln Green Apartments from Burkley Property Group. The 616-unit property sale equaled nearly $55,000 per unit. “Lincoln Green is a unique property,” Smith says. “It’s 25 years old, but it really competes with newer properties in the market. Two reasons: it has an incredible location in the Triad, and it has intensive on-site management. It has one of the best reputations in any sub-market. It is a clean, safe, well-run property.”

The property sits on 46 acres, with 13 units per acre and two lakes. Community amenities include a clubhouse, a fitness and aerobics center, two swimming pools, four lighted tennis courts and an enclosed pet run. Lincoln Green’s occupancy stands at approximately 96%.