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COLLEGE STATION, TX-Five months after acquiring the 158-unit Courtyard Apartments, Aspen Square Management Inc. has closed on its next-door neighbor, the 408-unit Briarwood Apartments. Both assets were bought from Newport Beach, CA-based Briarwood Trust.

Although the prices were kept quiet due to confidentiality agreements, similar complexes in the area are trading for $30,000 to $35,000 per unit. The West Springfield, MA-based Aspen Square owns more than 1,300 units in the College Station MSA with the purchase of the 9.52-acre Briarwood Apartments at 1201 Harvey Rd. The acquisition of Courtyard Apartments at 600 University Oaks Blvd. was completed last September.

According to Jeffrey L. Patterson, vice president with Apartment Realty Advisors’ Austin office, assets like Briarwood Apartments and Courtyard Apartments are in high demand among investors because of the strong fundamentals in the College Station market. He tells GlobeSt.com that increased enrollment at Texas A&M University is spurring demand for rental units. “Rental activity during the past 18 months in this market has been five times what it’s been compared to three years before,” he adds.

Patterson, who teamed with ARA’s transaction manager Kelly Witherspoon on the deal, explains Briarwood caught Aspen Square Management’s eye last fall while the Courtyard transaction was closing. Briarwood had been under contract at the time, but “it fell out of escrow, primarily because of financing problems,” Patterson says. “And as soon as it was dropped, Aspen Square came in, put it under contract and quickly closed.”

Built in 1971, Briarwood Apartments was 98% occupied at the time of sale. The mix consists of one- and two-bedroom apartments, ranging from 600 sf to 1,200 sf. Monthly rents go from $465 to $690.

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