Thursday, June 4, 2009

Sluggish New York City Home Sales Market Throws Curve at Treasury Secretary Geithner

LARCHMONT, NY—The nation’s bloggers are having a field day today. They are poking fun at Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner—not because of any new government policy decision but at Geithner’s unsuccessful efforts to sell his home.

Geithner, however, has proven he is a savvy real estate market watcher.

After three months of no-takers for his five-bedroom, 78-year-old home in the north New York City suburb of Larchmont, NY, the treasury secretary has rented the Tudor-styled property for $7,500 a month or $90,000 on an annualized basis.

That revenue will cover Geithner’s annual property tax bill of $27,000 but still won’t be enough to match his monthly mortgage payments on two loans totaling $1.25 million, according to published reports.

However, persons in a position to know doubt seriously that Geithner will be seeking temporary relief on the mortgage payments from his lender.

He makes $191,300 as Secretary of the Treasury, the same as his boss, Fed chairman Ben S. Bernanke. Last year, as president of the New York Federal Reserve Bank, Geithner earned $398,000. President Barack Obama makes $400,000 a year.

Geithner and his wife, Carole Sonnenfeld Geithner, paid $1.6 million for their home in 2004, according to Westchester County real estate records. After being named Treasury Secretary in January of this year, the Geithners put their home on the market with an asking price of $1.635 million.

Three weeks later, they dropped the price to $1.575 million. On May 21, they rented the house to an undisclosed tenant. The name of the Geithner’s real estate agent also was not disclosed.

The median home price in Westchester County in the first three months of this year was $532,000, according to the Westchester-Putnam Multiple Listing Service. Only a few sales in the $1 million-plus category have been closed to date.

Westchester County Realtors don’t expect prices to stabilize this year because of the surplus of available properties, according to published reports. That means more Westchester home owners will be renting rather than selling over the next 12 months, they estimate.

The Geithner home has a Larchmont mailing address but the property is actually nearer to the town of Mamaroneck, according to local Realtors. The Winged Foot Golf Club, home of frequent golf championship events, is located in Mamaroneck.

HFF arranges sale and financing of The Livingston in Plano, TX

DALLAS, TX – The Dallas office of HFF (Holliday Fenoglio Fowler, L.P.) announced today that it has closed the sale of and arranged acquisition financing for The Livingston, (top right photo) a 180-unit, Class A multifamily community built by local developer Tonti Properties in Plano, Texas.

The HFF investment sales team was led by managing directors Bill Miller (middle left photo) and Roberto Casas (bottom right photo) who marketed the property on behalf of the seller, Tonti Properties.

Sunstone Realty Advisors purchased The Livingston for an undisclosed amount free and clear of debt.

“The sale of The Livingston went very smoothly and closed in just over 60 days. Sunstone bought a great asset in an excellent location just off Wyndhaven and the North Dallas Tollway.

Tonti Properties’ strategy of holding their assets for the long-term is evident in the quality of the assets they develop,” said Miller.

Senior managing director John Brownlee (bottom left photo) handled the debt portion of the transaction on behalf of Sunstone Realty Advisors, arranging the $12.845 million loan through Wachovia Multifamily Capital, Inc. – FNMA.

The financing has a seven-year term and a 5.38 percent fixed-rate. Loan proceeds were used to acquire the property.

The Livingston is located at 6301 Windhaven Parkway adjacent to the Dallas North Tollway in the northern Dallas suburb of Plano.

The 96.7 percent leased property has one-, two- and three-bedroom units averaging 1,188 square feet each. Community amenities include a swimming pool, fitness center, laundry facility and 190 attached garages.

“The Livingston’s location in West Plano is ideal. It is close to numerous corporations including EDS, Frito-Lay, Pizza Hut, PepsiCo, Dr Pepper/Seven Up, JCPenney and Mary Kay,” added Brownlee.

“In addition, West Plano led the Dallas/Fort Worth metro in multifamily demand during the last 12 months ending third quarter 2008, and forecasts predict the submarket will remain one of the metro’s demand leaders during the next 12 months.”

Tonti Properties focuses on the development, acquisition, management and ownership of multifamily apartment communities throughout the Southeast and Southwest.

Headquartered in Vancouver, British Columbia, Sunstone Realty Advisors invests in multifamily assets throughout Canada and the United States.

John S. Brownlee, (214) 265-0880, Senior HFF Managing Director,
William D. Miller, (214) 265-0880, HFF Managing Director,
Kristen M. Murphy, HFF Associate Director, Marketing, (713) 852-3500,

HFF secures financing totaling nearly $50M on behalf of Trammell Crow Residential

HOUSTON, TX – The Houston and Dallas offices of HFF (Holliday Fenoglio Fowler, L.P.) announced today that they has secured nearly $50 million in financing on behalf of Trammell Crow Residential for Alexan Woods (top right photo) and Alexan Main Street, (middle left photo) two Class A multifamily complexes in Houston, Texas.

Working exclusively on behalf of the borrower, HFF executive managing director Jody Thornton (middle right photo) and associate directors John Ahmed and Matt Kafka (bottom left photo) placed two, seven-year adjustable-rate loans with Freddie Mac (Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation).

A $22.16 million loan was secured for Alexan Woods and a $27.63 million loan was arranged for Alexan Main Street. Proceeds will be used to retire the existing construction loans, while recapitalizing both assets with assumable, non-recourse financing and flexible prepayment structures.

“Despite an extremely challenging capital markets environment, Freddie Mac never wavered in their focus or in their commitment to these deals,” said Kafka.

Alexan Woods is located in The Woodlands, approximately 25 miles north of downtown Houston.

Completed in 2007, the property has 280 units with 99 percent of the units currently occupied.

Community amenities include a swimming pool, clubhouse, business center, fitness center and covered parking.

Currently 98 percent occupied, Alexan Main Street was also completed in 2007 and has 286 one- and two-bedroom units, averaging 983 square feet each. Residents have access to a resort-style pool, business center and athletic club.

Located at 8333 Braesmain Drive, the property is located at Braesmain Drive and South Main Street in Houston, adjacent to the Texas Medical Center.

“As the majority of sales today have some measure of assumable debt and/or seller financing, TCR was very astute in structuring these properties with attractive, non-recourse debt in-place,” added Ahmed.

Trammell Crow Residential entities develop and acquire multifamily rental communities throughout the United States.
Matt Kafka, HFF Associate Director, (713) 852-3500,
Kristen M. Murphy, HFF Associate Director, Marketing, (713) 852-3500,

Grubb & Ellis Completes Disposition of Danbury Corporate Center

SANTA ANA, CA (June 4, 2009) – Grubb & Ellis Company (NYSE: GBE), a leading real estate services and investment firm, today announced it has completed the disposition of Danbury Corporate Center, (top left photo) located in Danbury, Conn., to an entity of The Matrix Realty Group Inc. for $72.4 million.

The approximately $12.5 million in net proceeds from the sale will be used to pay down the company’s revolving credit facility.

With the Danbury Corporate Center transaction complete, Grubb & Ellis is actively engaged in seeking the disposition of the four remaining real estate assets currently held on the company’s balance sheet.

Damon Elder, 714.975.2659,
Janice McDill, 312.698.6707,

Bainbridge Management Opens New Office in Metro DC Area

HERNDON, VA– Bainbridge Management, a subsidiary of Florida-based Bainbridge Properties, is opening a new headquarters in the Metro D.C. area.

The new office will serve as the hub of the property management firm’s operations. Bainbridge Management chose the Washington, D.C. area to position itself for growth across the Mid-Atlantic region, where it currently operates, as well as for expansion across the rest of the East Coast.

The new office, located at 560 Herndon Parkway in Herndon, replaces a previous satellite office.

In addition, the firm has promoted Shane Gillman to Regional Marketing Manager for the Mid-Atlantic region.

“The firm’s goal is to grow its fee management business aggressively as property owners look for strong operators in these challenging markets,” said Kevin Sheehan, (top left photo) the President of Property Operations for The Bainbridge Companies.

“Bainbridge has implemented a very successful strategy of innovative marketing, dynamic pricing, effective operating controls, and hands-on management. This is exactly what property owners are seeking right now.”

The firm currently manages properties in Northern Virginia, Maryland, and Florida, including garden-style communities as well as urban high-rises.

It is actively expanding its property management portfolio, with deals pending in several new markets, including Atlanta.

The Bainbridge Companies are based in Wellington, Florida with offices in North Carolina and the Washington, D.C. metro area.

Contact: Terri Thornton, Thornton Communications, (404) 932-4347

Emerson International Negotiates Four Lease Agreements for 13,125SF of Office Space at Major Center Plaza in Southwest Orlando

ORLANDO, Fla. - Emerson International recently negotiated four lease transactions that total 13,125 square feet of office space at Major Center Plaza (top right photo) in southwest Orlando near Universal Studios.

Kenneth Koch, Commercial Portfolio Manager for Emerson International, negotiated a new long-term lease at 5750 Major Center Blvd. that totals 4,761 square feet of office space. Dream Balloon Enterprises, LLC, is the new tenant.

Koch negotiated three other lease transactions in the Major Center Plaza building at 5728 Major Blvd.

ADP, Inc. (Automated Data Processing) renewed its lease of 6,593 square feet of office space. Jones Lang LaSalle Global Real Estate represented ADP, Inc.

Koch negotiated two new leases in the same office building with Protechnica Technology Consulting Services who leased 800 square feet and Force Travel & Leisure who leased 971 square feet.

For more information, please contact:
Eric J. Emerson, Vice President and General Manager Emerson International, Inc. 407-834-9560;;

Kenneth Koch, Commercial Portfolio Manager, Emerson International, Inc. 407-834-9560;
Larry Vershel or Beth Payan, Larry Vershel Communications, 407-644-4142

NAI Realvest negotiates expansion lease of 5,600SF at Benson Junction CommerCenter in DeBary, FL

MAITLAND, FL– NAI Realvest recently negotiated an expansion lease agreement for 5,600 square feet of industrial space at Benson Junction CommerCenter in DeBary.

Michael Heidrich,(top right photo) a principal in the firm, and associate Sean DuPree (top left photo) CCIM negotiated the agreement on behalf of the landlord Benson Junction CommerCenter LLC of Maitland.

Tenant Del Mar Solutions Inc. of DeBary doubled its space, vacating a 2,800 square foot suite at Benson Junction and moving into suites 8 and 9 at 485 Shell Rd. in the industrial center.

For more information, contact:

Michael Heidrich Principal, NAI Realvest 407-875-9989;

Sean DuPree, CCIM, Associate, NAI Realvest 407-875-9989,;

Patrick Mahoney, Principal/Chief Operating Officer, NAI Realvest, 407-875-9989

Beth Payan or Larry Vershel, Larry Vershel Communications, 407-644-4142

Northwest Portland Area Indian Health Board Leases 16,792 SF

PORTLAND, OR – Grubb & Ellis Company (NYSE: GBE), a leading real estate services and investment firm, announced the Northwest Portland Area Indian Health Board has signed a 16,792-square-foot, seven-year lease at Broadway Plaza, (top left photo) 2121 SW Broadway St., in downtown Portland.

Jake Lancaster of Grubb & Ellis represented the Northwest Portland Area Indian Health Board. The lessor, Weston Investment Company, LLC., was represented by Steve Root at American Property Management.

“The new offices will give us room to continue to grow, will have more open space flexibility for teamwork facilitation, as well as updated training facilities for our Tribal members. We will still be close to project partners at OHSU and PSU,” said Joe Finkbonner (bottom left photo) the organization’s executive director.

The Northwest Portland Area Indian Health Board was established in 1972, and has been in its present location at 527 SW Hall St. since 1987.

“After many years in its present location, the move is a statement of confidence in the future of programs that continue to give needed attention to health disparities,” said Andy Joseph, (middle right photo) chairman of the Health Board.

“These programs are built on a solid foundation of many successes. A key to that success is the unity of the tribes in founding and supporting our Health Board.”

NPAIHB, under the direction of 43 American Indian Tribes in the states of Oregon, Washington and Idaho, oversees a variety of health-related programs. In efforts to promote health and prevent disease, the organization administers projects relative to cancer, tobacco use and women’s health.

Its Tribal Epidemiology Center administers projects in diabetes, dental center support, immunizations, toddler obesity, STDs/HIV/AIDS, substance abuse and data registry.

The NPAIHB also facilitates Tribal consultation on issues affecting Indian Health programs and gives close attention to legislation at the state, tribal and federal levels.


Patricia Raicht, 503.972.5456,
Joe Finkbonner, 503.228.4185,

Arbor Closes $2.8M Fannie Mae DUS® Small Loan for River Street Apartments in Mattapan, MA

UNIONDALE, NY (June 4, 2009) - Arbor Commercial Funding, LLC (“Arbor”), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Arbor Commercial Mortgage, LLC, announced the recent funding of a $2,800,000 loan under the Fannie Mae DUS® Small Loan product line for the 32-unit complex known as River Street Apartments in Mattapan, MA.

The 10-year loan amortizes on a 30-year schedule and carries a note rate of 5.92 percent.

The loan was originated by John Kelly,(top right photo) Vice President, in Arbor’s full-service Boston, MA lending office.
“This transaction demonstrates Arbor’s ability to continue to close multifamily loans on behalf of our clients at very favorable rates and terms,” said Kelly. “And our client has done an excellent job of managing this asset for several years.”

Contact: Ingrid Principe, P: 516.506.4298, F: 516.542.2555,

2008 Commercial/Multifamily Originations Down 65 Percent to $181B

WASHINGTON, DC (June 4, 2009) - The commercial/multifamily mortgage origination volumes decreased 65 percent in 2008, with mortgage bankers closing $181.4 billion in commercial and multifamily loans; according to the Mortgage Bankers Association's 2008 Commercial Real Estate/Multifamily Finance: Annual Origination Volume Summation.

Decreases were seen across all property types and most investor groups, and were led by decreases in loans intended for commercial mortgage-backed security (CMBS), collateralized debt obligations (CDO) and other asset-backed security (ABS) conduits. Intermediated loan volume decreased 68 percent between 2007 and 2008.

"After seeing considerable growth in 2006 and 2007, commercial mortgage originations fell dramatically in 2008," said Jamie Woodwell, MBA's Vice President of Commercial Real Estate Research.

"The continuing credit crunch, a relatively low volume of commercial mortgages maturing in the coming years and little incentive for property owners to sell their properties all continue to put downward pressure on origination volumes."

Originations were dominated by multifamily loans - representing $64.6 billion, or 36 percent of the lending total. Among major investor groups, CMBS, CDO and other ABS conduits saw the greatest percentage decrease in volume between 2007 and 2008, followed by real estate investment trusts (REITs); special finance companies; and life insurance companies.

Lending for hotel/motel properties had the largest decrease in originations by property type, followed closely by office properties.

CONTACT: Carolyn Kemp, (202) 557-2727,