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N.J. firm buys New Castle apartments for $16M

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Montium Colonial Village apartments New Castle Delaware Crescent Management

Montium, a 2-year-old firm based in Lakewood, N.J., recently acquired the Colonial Village apartments in New Castle. | DBT PHOTO BY JACOB OWENS

NEW CASTLE – A New Jersey-based multifamily real estate investment and operating firm continues to invest heavily in Delaware, adding a New Castle apartment complex to its portfolio last month.

Montium, a 2-year-old firm based in Lakewood, N.J., and led by founding partners Sam Tress, Ben Ferziger and Israel Mendlowitz, had already acquired seven apartment complexes in Delaware, investing more than $210 million in the First State.

On Jan. 31, it acquired the Colonial Village Apartments, located at 600 Moores Lane off Route 9, in a $16.25 million sale, according to county land records. It marks the largest commercial property sale in the state to start 2023, according to Delaware Business Times research.

Montium acquired the 132-unit Colonial Village from Crescent Management in a sale that translated to a per unit cost of more than $123,000. Colonial Village features one- or two-bedroom units with monthly rents ranging from $1,325 to $1,525, according to online listings.

Wilmington-based Crescent had acquired Colonial Village in 2005 for $5.28 million, according to county land records, translating into a sale-to-sale return of more than 200%.

After acquiring five greater Newark-area apartment complexes, including Pine Brook, Southgate Gardens, Iron Hill, Liberty Square and Hidden Creek, Montium also acquired Cranston Hall apartments in Prices Corner and Galloway Apartments in New Castle in May to diversify its locations.

The multi-family real estate market has been particularly hot in Delaware, with half of the Top 10 most expensive sales last year coming from the sector. Most of that interest is concentrated in New Castle County, where out-of-state investors like Montium have been pouring tens of millions into upgradable middle-tier complexes that can attract workers from the greater Philadelphia area or the University of Delaware.

Montium targets non-trophy properties in East Coast markets that it can invest remodels into, raising the value to Class B levels. It is an end-to-end firm, which invests in acquisitions and remodels while managing maintenance and leasing afterward.

β€œOur site selection process is robust, ranging from market analysis and risk assessment to mapping out comprehensive budgets and schedules. This finely-honed process allows us to confidently seek out properties that promise resilient performance,” the firm says on its website.

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