Portage, Michigan

BLOOMFIELD HILLS, MI—Pillar, a Guggenheim Partners affiliate and provider affordable housing solutions, has just originated a $20.7 million FHA/HUD loan for the acquisition and rehabilitation of Milham Meadows Apartments, a 300-unit property located on the corner of Milham Rd. and Oakland Dr. in Portage, MI, a suburb of Kalamazoo. Tenants occupy the entire property and officials from Integra Property Group, the borrower, say it will remain fully tenanted throughout the rehabilitation.

Peter Nichol, the managing director in Pillar’s San Francisco office, originated the transaction but also worked with Pillar’s Bloomfield Hills-based FHA lending team including Mark Wiedelman, president of the firm’s FHA lending division and Nancy A. Ludwick, chief FHA underwriter. The construction and permanent mortgage loan will facilitate the rehabilitation of the property with short term tax exempt bonds and 4% tax credits. The transaction closed on June 20, 2014.

“We worked closely with the Detroit HUD office and the Michigan State Housing Development Authority to meet federal and state affordable housing requirements and close the loan in less than four months,” says Nichol. “This is an extremely high profile affordable housing preservation project that will benefit from millions of dollars of capital invested in enhancing and preserving the property for years to come.”

Integra, a Seattle-based multifamily investment and advisory firm focused on affordable housing preservation, will also use proceeds from the sale of low income housing tax credits to purchase the property and complete unit and capital systems upgrades. The project will not displace any tenants, company officials add. The company has developed or acquired over $500 million in multifamily investments in the past decade, comprising over 10,000 units in dozens of affordable apartment communities.

“The preservation of Milham Meadows will ensure hundreds of low-income households in west Michigan receive access to high-quality affordable housing,” says Hans Juhle, managing member of Integra.

As reported in GlobeSt.com, Pillar recently merged with Chicago-based Cohen Financial, a third-party service provider that serves clients throughout the US and had offices in 10 major markets. Pillar was founded in June 2010 and offers multifamily and commercial loan products throughout the nation, and can finance solutions for market-rate and affordable-housing multifamily mortgages, student housing, senior housing, manufactured housing and credit facilities.