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FLAGSTAFF, AZ-Following a two-year escrow, a Phoenix investor has finally claimed the 310-unit Pines at University for $19 million. The asset, originally listed for $20.1 million, immediately will be converted into condos.

The deal for 1385 W. University Ave. was bogged down by a prepayment penalty, according to Cindy Cooke, senior vice president for Colliers International Inc.’s Phoenix office. The 10-year loan also carried an 8.25% fixed-rate interest. “We had to wait until the loan could be paid off before we could close,” says Cooke, who with Bret Zinn, represented the seller of record, WWLC LLC of Tucson.

Cooke tells GlobeSt.com that the buyer, Biltmore Pines LLC, was willing to hang in for the escrow period because it ultimately ended up being a strong deal. “The value of the property is higher today than even a couple of years ago,” Cooke adds. “This was a smart buyer.”

The seller, in the meantime, has disposed of his only apartment asset in Arizona. “The seller received a good offer from the buyer and had someone willing to work through the loan issue,” Cooke says.

Built in 1996, the 89%-occupied complex is a class A property with a mix of studios and one- and two-bedroom units. Apartments average 785 sf; rents range from $486 to $926 per month.

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