[caption id="attachment_226936" align="aligncenter" width="1200"] Montium, a fast-growing real estate investment and operating firm, has acquired the Apartments at Pine Brook in Newark for $63 million. | DBT PHOTO BY JACOB OWENS[/caption]
NEWARK – A New Jersey-based multifamily real estate investment and operating firm is quickly becoming a major player in the northern Delaware market, especially in the Newark area, after acquiring the Apartments at Pine Brook for $63 million 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 six apartment complexes in Delaware, investing more than $147 million.The addition of Pine Brook, a popular community for University of Delaware students and graduates located off Paper Mill Road, will push Monitum’s First State investment over $210 million. The latest sale also translated into a one-time realty transfer tax payment to the state of more than $1.5 million, while the city of Newark received $945,000.
[caption id="attachment_226937" align="alignright" width="300"] The Apartments at Pine Brook in Newark was acquired for more than $200,000 a unit. | DBT PHOTO BY JACOB OWENS[/caption]
Montium acquired the 308-unit Pine Brook from Amerimar Enterprises for $63 million on Sept. 30, translating to a per unit sale of more than $204,000. Pine Brook features one- or two-bedroom units with monthly rents ranging from $1,520 to $2,050, according to online listings.Philadelphia-based Amerimar had acquired Pine Brook nearly 30 years ago for about $7.8 million according to county land records, translating into a sale-to-sale return of more than 700%.After acquiring four greater Newark-area apartment complexes, including 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.“Our 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.Neither Montium nor Amerimar responded to a request for comment on the acquisition.The sale of Pine Brook ranks as the sixth largest commercial sale in Delaware this year and the third largest of a multi-family asset behind the nearby One Easton and Foxwood apartments, according to Delaware Business Times research.