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MIDDLETOWN, RI-A 19-building apartment community here bordering tony Newport has been sold for just under $20 million. The 179-unit Northgate Apartment Homes fetched $110,000 per room in the agreement between seller Middletown Tarragon LLC and the buyer, Northland Middletown LLC.

Middletown Tarragon LLC is an affiliate of Tarragon Corp., a New York City-based multifamily developer sporting a broad national footprint, whereas Northland Middletown LLC was formed by Northland Investment Corp. of Newton, MA. The two parties also recently launched a $2 billion-joint venture with Northland as majority owner of a portfolio expected to encompass more than 21,000 units in 83 apartment communities located across the country. That pact was recently highlighted by GlobeSt.com.

The Northgate Apartments sale was orchestrated by brokers Steve Witten and Victor Nolletti of the Marcus & Millichap Investment Real Estate Services office in New Haven, CT. Constructed in the early 1970s, Northgate is situated on a 16-acre campus accentuated by extensive landscaping, a swimming pool and tennis courts. The residential units feature a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom units ranging in size from 713 sf to 1,075 sf and offering such amenities as fully equipped designer kitchens, walk-in closets, private balconies and energy efficient windows. According to Witten, the complex is also desirable given its close proximity to central Newport and that district’s renowned blend of shopping and waterfront attractions.

As with much of the investment sales market, multifamily activity is slower than in past years, but there have still been a number of notable deals completed in the early part of 2008 throughout New England. Industry watchers say they anticipate more owners will move properties off the sidelines as the year progresses, and signs of life have been appearing in recent weeks. As GlobeSt.com reported, General Investment & Development Corp. of Boston plans to harvest its 240-unit Windsor at Brentwood in North Providence, RI, with the firm retaining CB Richard Ellis to conduct the marketing campaign. CBRE broker Paul Donahue says Rhode Island’s multifamily fundamentals are improving, with occupancy and rental rates both trending up during the past year.

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