Twin Cities Apartment Advisors
William J. Cullen and Robert L. Colwell have over 30 years of experience in the Minnesota Multi-Family business. Our experience, database of active Buyers and hard work assure that Multi-Family property owners get the most money for their asset while protecting their on-site staff and residents from Buyer inquiries.
National apartment vacancy hits 12-year iow
The growth being seen in the nation’s apartment market saw little signs of slowing during the
first quarter of 2014, as vacancy fell and rental rates rose. According to data released by
REIS, Inc. last week, U.S. apartment vacancy fell to 4 percent, which is the lowest level since
the third quarter of 2001 when vacancy was 3.9 percent. Vacancy was down from 4.4 percent
in the fourth quarter of 2013.
Burnsville Complexes with 588 apartments sell, get new name
Philadelphia-based Equus Capital Partners bought, renamed and plans to improve two
Burnsville apartment complexes with a combined 588 units. Equus said it will spend $4.5
million to improve the 348-unit Atrium Apartments (renamed Madison Atrium) and the
240-unit Trailway Pond Apartments (renamed Madison Trailway).
Apartments in the Twin Cities can't go up fast enough
Twin Cities apartment developers are filling units nearly as fast they can build them.
Although more than 3,000 new apartments were built in the metro area over the past year,
the average vacancy rate barely budged, ending the year at just 2.5 percent, with average
monthly rent rising 2.5 percent to $981, according to Marquette Advisors.
Eagan building to become apartments
The tallest office building in Dakota County is about to get a major makeover. A Twin Cities
developer plans to convert the 10-story Waterview Office Tower in Eagan into 112 rental
apartments called City Vue Commons. The conversion by Interstate Partners received
preliminary approval this week and is part of a much larger mixed-use development that
will have a second phase...
Wealthy Americans pick real estate as best investments for 2014
Millionaires across the U.S. say commercial and residential real estate is the best alternative-
asset investment option for 2014. One-third of millionaires surveyed in a new Morgan Stanley
study plan to purchase real estate this year, Bloomberg reports. And 23 percent say they'll
invest in real estate investment trusts.
Twin Cities apartment developers offer ammenities for Fido
One way developers are attracting dog-owning residents is by rolling out Fido-friendly
amenities, including indoor potty spots with “canine turf,” spa-style dog washes with
easy-access walk-up ramps, grooming stations, heated runs and pet-minded concierge services.
Other buildings are contemplating activities such as doggy yoga and Olympics.
Lyndale-Franklin could get apartments, theater
A developer plans a big makeover for the intersection of Lyndale and Franklin avenues
in Minneapolis, proposing a six-story apartment building and theater.
Out-of-state investors zero in on Twin Cities real estate
Out-of-state real estate investors from Malaysia to Miami are spending billions on Twin Cities
apartment complexes and commercial buildings, including some of the most iconic office towers
on the downtown Minneapolis skyline. Even celebrity rainmakers like Chicago-based real estate
king Sam Zell are forking over big dollars for property in local ZIP codes.
Minneapolis reports record $1.2B in construction projects
Minneapolis issued 12,100 construction building permits in 2013, which had a combined value of
$1.21 billion, a new annual record for the city. This is the second year in a row the city has seen
more than $1 billion in construction approved, up from $1.12 billion in 2012. In 2011, construction
projects were valued at the below average total of $752 million, which was up from a huge drop in
2010, when the projects were valued at just over half a million dollars.
Apartment Vacancy Rate declined to 4.1% in Q4 2013; Expected to increase slightly in 2014
Reis reported that the apartment vacancy rate declined in Q4 to 4.1% from 4.2% in Q3.
In Q4 2012 (a year ago) the vacancy rate was at 4.6%, and the rate peaked at 8.0% at the end
Carlson plans apartments on provate Minnetonka island
Carlson Real Estate Co. plans to sell a wooded 12-acre private island next to its Minnetonka
headquarters to Trammell Crow Co. for a new apartment complex. Carlson is helping plan
five-story, 175-unit luxury apartment tower that Trammell Crow Co.'s High Street Residential
subsidiary will develop.
Financing still flowing for apartments
Financing has been plentiful for new apartment projects, and that stream of capital
shows no signs of slowing any time soon. The supply of capital for apartment deals
is nearly as free-flowing as it was at the peak of the real estate market in 2005 and 2006.
“There is certainly a ton of liquidity in the market across the board,” said Doug Seylar, a
senior vice president and managing director at CBRE Capital Markets in Minneapolis.
Landlords can get tougher on tenants under new law
Gov. Scott Walker has signed into law a Republican-sponsored bill that gives landlords more
power over tenants. Walker signed the bill privately Thursday. It allows landlords to dispose of
any property an evicted tenant leaves behind, immediately tow parked vehicles and toss tenants
out if a crime occurs on the property and the tenant was in a position to prevent it.
Landscape expands for artist housing
The stereotype of the poor, starving artist living in a dump may soon be out of fashion.
In fact, it's a good time to be an artist looking for affordable living space in the Twin Cities.
20-Somethings Emerging From Their Parents' Basement Will Keep American Apartment
Despite some signs of overbuilding, America's apartment rental market will remain robust as
20-somethings begin to move out of their parents' homes, Wells Fargo's Anika Kahn wrtites in
a new note. Since the recession, there's actually been a substantial boom in in multi-family
housing starts. The surge didn't emerge out of nowhere: Khan says demand has moved at a
"breakneck" pace since 2010, fueled by tighter lending standards for home loans and slowly
recovering household formation.
Twin Cities rentals fill fast, and rents keep rising
Though hundreds of apartments have hit the market - creating plenty of supply - rents are going
nowhere but up. The average rent arcoss the metro area rose 3.5 percent to $984 during the
third quarter, according to a report released Monday by Marequette Advisors
Apartment Sale is metro's largest in two years
The 361-unit Stoneleigh at the Reserve Apartments in Plymouth sold for $53 Million last week.
It was the largest apartment transaction in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area in the past two years.
Inside View: Ted Bigos, Bigos Management
Minneapolis native Ted Bigos started buying and fixing up rundown apartment
buildings during college. Forty years later his Golden Valley-based Bigos Management -
with 42 properties and 8000 units - is one of the largest apartment owners in the Twin Cities.
Trendy local apartment projects get highlighted in New York Times story
A recent New York Times story highlights the state of the national real estate market by
looking to Minneapolis. The city's trendy North Loop neighborhood has seen plenty of
development in the last year, with new apartments filling up fast.
Booming market drives up rents and squeezes out renters
The apartment boom underway in the Twin Cities is adding thousands of rentals across the
metro area, from lavish lofts to trendy units inspired by feng shui. Only problem is, many
people can’t afford them.
Twin Cities rental housing market tightens
The market for rental housing in the Twin Cities in the second quarter of the year was even
tighter than it was a year ago, according to data compiled by Marquette Advisors on behalf
of the Minnesota housing partnership.
It's Business-as-Usual in Minneapolis Apartments
The latest apartment performance stats in Minneapolis-St. Paul look a lot like the long-term
historical norms. That’s both good news and bad news. The good news is that Minneapolis
apartments are jam-packed full. Occupancy here registered at 97.6%.
MBA's second quarter commercial/multifamily delinquency rates report
Today Mortgage Bankers Association released their second quarter commercial/multifamily
delinquency rates report. The report shows that delinquency rates for commercial and multifamily
mortgage loans declined in the second quarter of 2013. Commercial and multifamily
loan performance continued to improve during the second quarter, with delinquency rates falling
for every major investor group. The quarterly decline in the delinquency rate of loans held in
commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS) was the largest on record, and delinquency
rates for loans held by life companies and the GSEs remain low and fell lower during the quarter.
MBA's Commercial/Multifamily Delinquency Rates report is available for download, at
MBA's web site.
Despite a barrage of new apartments, demand continues to outstrip new supply
Depite a barrage of new apartments in the Twin Cities metro, renters still don't have the
upper-hand. A new report from Marquette Advisors shows that the average vacancy rate
in the 13-county metro fell 50 basis points to 2.3 percent, causing rents to increase 3 percent to
$979. The represents the largest quarterly decline in vacancy in two years and the ninth
consecutive quarter with vacancy rates below 3 percent.
Big Upscale Apartment Project Underway in Maple Grove
A Florida-based developer has broken ground on the first phase of Skye at Arbor Lakes,
a large luxury apartment project in Maple Grove. The project’s first phase calls for 263
upscale apartments. Altamonte Springs, Florida-based LeCesse Development Corporation
is developing the project with Pittsford, New York-based Morgan Management, LLC, and
the first units will be available next summer.
No rental bubble in Twin Cities - yet
Despite a barrage of new apartment buildings in the Twin Cities metro area, demand
for rentals continues to outstrip supply. The average vacancy rate in the seven-county
area dipped to 2.3 percent at the end of June, causing the average metro rent price to
increase 3 percent to $979, according to a second-quarter survey by Marquette Advisors.
That was the largest quarterly decline in vacancy rates in two years, and the ninth
consecutive quarter of vacancy rates below 3 percent.
How long can the apartment construction boom continue?
The real estate appraisal firm Nicollet Partners in Minneapolis tracks new and proposed
apartment projects in the Twin Cities, and as of last week its pipeline report showed more
than 7,000 units under construction and an additional 13,600 units proposed. “And I’m
sure we are maybe missing some,” said Doug Wageman, a principal with the firm. Usually
when you see that much activity in any segment of the real estate market, a famously cyclical
industry, you know what’s coming next.
Finance and Commerce Article
Four investors who bought a pair of Richfield apartment buildings 13 years ago have sold them
to an investor from Dallas for $885,000. DDTS Properties LLC, an entity named for the initials of
the four private investors, sold the two eight-unit buildings at 7040 and 7108 Cedar Ave. S. to
Regan Real Estate LLC, an investor from Dallas. “They bought it when they were young, but now
they’re married and have kids and different jobs,” said Robert Colwell, a partner in William Robert
Twin Cities Apartment Advisors in Edina. They simply didn’t have time to manage the properties,
said Colwell, who has known one of the investors for years and represented the group in the sale,
which closed July 31.
Southdale address could attract not just shoppers, but residents, too
A novel groundbreaking for a new luxury apartment complex occurred last week in the shadow
of a Cheesecake Factory. Sure, there were the usual fancy shovels perched atop a ceremonial
pile of dirt, surrounded by beaming real estate developers and city officials. But the site itself, at
the corner of W. 69th Street and York Avenue S., has never been developed -- even though its
Edina location is one of the most attractive commercial spots in the Twin Cities. That's because
it sits squarely in Southdale's parking lot.
Strong rental market brings wave of renovations
With a Wi-Fi lounge, up-to-date fitness center and apartment units with expresso-finished
cabinets, The Woods of Burnsville might seem like one of hte new rental complexes springing
up around the Twin Cities.
n reality, it’s a 1980s-era property undergoing an ambitious
makeover — one of a growing number of obsolete rentals upgraded to satisfy the demand for
trendy apartments that has spread to the suburbs.
A June construction boom in Minneapolis
Growing consumer confidence. Bigger incomes. They're the kind of things making life pretty
sweet for Twin Cities homebuilders.
Housing construction so far this year is up 23 percent
from the same period in 2012, putting builders on track for their best year since 2007. During
June alone, 496 permits were issued to build 912 units, the Builders Association of the Twin
Cities (BATC) reported.
Twin Cities home builders on track to have best year since 2007
With six months to go, Twin Cities home builders are on track to have their best year since
2007, offering more evidence that consumers have the confidence- and income - to spend on
expensive houses and upscale apartments. That's according to a new report released this
morning by the Builders Association of the Twin Cities, which shows that sousing construction so
far the year is 23 percent ahead of last year, and home buyers aren’t shy about how much they’re
Bad Minneapolis landlord gone, but not all of the problems
The properties' new owner said he's on top of the repair needs, but some tenants are still
complaining. Six months after Minnespolis pressured one of it's worst landlords to sell 38
apartment buildings, city inspectors report a dramatic drop in tenant complaints and
Developer Proposes Four-Story Apartment Complex, Shops in Cedar Grove
Stonebridge Companies wants to build a four-story retail and apartment complex near the
soon-to-be-built outlet mall in Cedar Grove. The dust has barely settled on the groundbreaking
for the new Paragon outlet mall, and already Eagan city officials are weighing a significant
proposal from another developer. On Tuesday, the Eagan Economic Development Authority
voted to enter into negotiations to sell a 4.8-acre parcel near the outlet mall site to Stonebridge
Companies, a Twin Cities-based developer specializing in multi-family housing complexes.
Twin Cities Luxury Apartments in Demand
High-end apartments are popping up all around the metro. In fact, there are four luxury buildings
in St. Louis Park alone that are opening this month - and it seems they're filling up fast, reports Aristea Brady.
Trammell Crow picks Doran Construction to build Junction Flats
A Dallas-based developer has picked Twin Cities-area contractor Doran Construction to build
Junction Flats, the six-story, 182-unit apartment development on Fifth Street just north of Target
Field in Minneapolis.
Southcross Village Townhomes Trades for $5.1M
KES Holdings LLC acquired the 60-unit Southcross Village Townhomes at 14800 County Road 5
in Burnsville, MN for $5,125,000, or about $85,000 per unit. William Cullen of WilliamRobert
represented the seller, Roseville Properties Management Company.
Trammel Crow to build luxury apartments in Golden Valley
A Dallas-based developer said it plans to build more than 160 luxury apartments in Golden Valley,
a small suburb along the northwest edge of
. That’s in addition to plans for another
600 or so units in Golden Valley.
165 Luxury apartments coming to Golden Valley
Dallas-based Trammell Crow Co. said this morning that it plans to begin construction this fall on
165 luxury apartments in Golden Valley. The Arcata will built on a 2-acre site near The Shops at
West End. It'll be adjacent to the Colonnade Office Tower and south of Golden Hills Office Center
on Golden Hills Drive.
St. Louis Park's luxury apartment building spree worries some city officials
Since 2011, nearly 900 luxury apartment units have been built in St. Louis Park, prompting
some city officials to raise concerns about maintaining an affordable and diverse housing stock.
“The variety of housing being offered has been very narrow,” said City Council Member Anne
Mavity. “The issue of affordability is huge. Most of the rent price points that we have been seeing
are on the high end, and I want to make sure that we have affordability so folks working in regular
middle-class jobs can afford to live in our community and in these newer developments.”
Twin Cities rental demand still strong despite new apartments
Hundreds of new apartments in the Twin Cities have yet to put a dent in the demand for
rentals. The dip in vacancies comes despite the addition of 620 new apartments - mostly
in Minneapolis' trendiest neighborhoods - and rents that have steadily crept higher in the
Twin Cities Housing Construction up 111 percent in April
Housing construction in the Twin Cities was up more than 110 percent, making it one of the
busiest Aprils in nearly a decade. Throughout the 13-county metro area, builders were issued
372 permits to build 817 apartments and single-family houses, according to a report from the
Builders Association of the Twin Cities.
New apartments barley putting a dent in Twin Cities vacancy rates, and rents are on the rise
Hundreds of new apartments have been built in the Twin Cities, but that hasn't put a dent in the
average vacancy rate in the region. Just-released first quarter data shows that the average
vacancy rate in the metro was 2.8% compared with 2.9% during the previous quarter, according to Marquette Advisors.
Forget Buying a Single Family Home: Purchase an Apartment Complex
From is small rented apartment in New Yor City's East Village, former advertising executive,
Joe Fairless is in the final stages of closing on a $6.8 million apartment building in Ohio. Real
estate investors like Fairless are kicking single-family homes to the curb in today's housing
market to purchase apartments in areas with low vacancy rates.
Building Permits Bloom in April
Despite the long winter and rising costs, the Twin Cities home building market is wraping up its
busiest April since April 2007. Minneapolis accounts for half of the planned housing units in April,
a reflection of two apartment projects under construction: Opus Development Co's. 253-unit Nic onFifth project at 415 Nicollet Mall, and the 137-unit Solhavn development at 815 Second St N. in the North Loop area of downtown.
Townhouses planned for 49th and Vernon in Edina
Minneapolis-based Hunt Associates has received preliminary approvals to tear down a pair
of small, 1950's apartment buildings and an adjacent single-family house near Hwy 100
replacing them with 16 attached townhouse units. Robert L. Colwell, now with WilliamRobert,
represented the seller in this townhome project and brought in Hunt Associates as the developer.
Second glory for downtown's Pioneer-Endicott buildings?
While investors cooled their heels during the recession, Richard Pakonen and Clint Blaiser
were flying to Chicago to buy the better part of a St. Paul block they feared was wasting away.
For months the pair begged a property owner mired in litigation to sell them St. Paul's first
skyscraper, a condemned parking ramp and two adjoining downtown properties.
Totino's Italian Kitchen in Minneapolis to be replaced by Apartments
The northeast Minneapolis restaurant where the queen of frozen pizza made her fortune will
soon become the city's latest rental apartments. For decades, families packed into big red
vinyl booths and slurped noodles over checkered tablecloths in a northeast Minneapolis
restaurant where Rose and Jim Totino pumped out millions of meatballs before selling their
frozen pizza company to Pillsbury for $22 million.
Apartment vacancy rate declined to 4.3% in Q1 2013
Reis reported that the apartment vacancy rate fell to 4.3% in Q1, down from 4.5% in
Q4 2012. The vacancy rate was at 5.0% in Q1 2012 and peaked at 8.0% at the end of
Apartment vacancy rate falls to lowest level since 2001
The U.S. apartment vacancy rate fell to it's lowest level in more than a decade, but
persistent stagnant income growth for U.S. workers has tempered the ability of landlords
to raise rents, according to an industry report.
Downtown Minneapolis office finds new life as apartments
With an oversupply of office space and a shortage of apartments, downtown developers are
setting their sights on converting office buildings into living space. For decades the stately Soo Line building - once headquarters to Soo Line Railroad and US Bank - dominated the
Minneapolis skyline. Old age hasn't been kind to the 98-year-old tower.
The Talented Mr. Perez: How Obama's Labor nominee muscled a city to drop a Supreme
President Obama nominated Thomas Perez on Monday to run the Labor Department, praising
him as "a consensus-builder" who passed the nation's "first statewide living-wage law" in
Maryland. That isn't his only talent. Consider how he worked behind the scenes to undermine two
civil cases against the City of St. Paul in order to stop a Supreme Court case that might have
repudiated his discrimination enforcement theories.
New North Minneapolis apartment construction in need of better design
Last week at the Jordan housing committee meeting, CommonBond Communities presented
their design proposal for the apartment building to be constructed at the West Broadway curve.
Dowtown St. Paul post office deal reached; developer plans 250 apartments
Developer Jim Stolpestad has signed a purchase agreement for the 17-story central post
office building on Kellogg Boulevard in downtown St. Paul, with the goal of the building
at least 250 units of market-rate apartments overlooking the Mississippi River.
Apartment Tower planned for near First Avenue nightclub is 'on hold'
Turnstone Group has suspended its plans to build a nine-story apartment tower called
The Venue, which was slated to be built near the First Avenue nightclub. It is blaming a
run-up in construction costs.
I-394 Strip in Golden Valley becomes hotbed for apartment development
The "power strip" along Interstate 394 between Hwy 100 and I-494 in Golden Valley is not
only proving to be a top draw for office users, it's also becoming one of the hottest spots in
the Twin Cities for apartment development.
Apartments Snapped up as Fast as They're Built
Apartments in the Twin Cities are filling up as fast as they are becoming available, sparking
a new wave of rental development unlike anything the metro has seen in decades.
Twin Cities Metro Area Multi-Family Market Overview
Where will you take your rental property business in 2013? View this presentation to get some
solid information to use in your planning. William Cullen, WilliamRobert, and John Prebarich,
Chase Commercial Lending, highlight what is going on in new construction, occupancy trends,
rental rates, the financial market, and even worldwide politics to paint a picture of what is coming
in the year ahead for the Twin Cities multi-family market.
Frenz buys Minneapolis apartment portfolio from controversial investor Zorbalas
Apartment owner Steve Frenz is recapitalized and starting to fix some of the most notorious
apartment buildings in Minneapolis.
Pro One Management Pays $15.8M for Burningham Apartments
Pro One Management acquired the Burningham Apartments at 1501-1513 Burnsville Pkwy E. in
Burnsville, MN from Johnson Management Co. for $15.8 million, or about $49,000 per unit. The
WilliamRobert team represented both the buyer and the seller in the sale.
Saint Paul Apartment Tower Fetches $51 million
Kellog Square, a signature apartment tower in downtown St. Paul has been sold for $51 Million,
a sign of confidence that the market for downtown apartments in the Twin Cities will remain strong.
Apartment Vacancy Rate Declined to 4.5% in Q4
Reis reported that the apartment vacancy rate fell to 4.5% in Q4, down from 4.7% in Q3 2012.
The vacancy rate was at 5.2% in Q4 2011 and peaked at 8.0% at the end of 2009.
Just Sold: Mint Properties goes on apartment-buying spree
In a Finance and Commerce article Jim Rubin, owner of Minneapolis-based Mint Properties LLC,
has acquired 11 buildings in the last month. The acquisitions include nine buildings in Minneapolis
and two in St. Paul, totaling 183 units. The transactions involved about a half-dozen different
owners with different reasons for selling according to Dan Largen, property manager for the
company. The buyer and seller of one of the St. Paul properties, located at 1210 and 1233 Randolph Ave., was represented by WilliamRobert.