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CAMBRIDGE, MA-The multifamily market in the Boston-metro area is showing signs of life amid the financial crisis, which show some mid-size buildings trading or coming onto the market. While the industry struggles with uncertain times, the safe bets still seem to point toward the marquee areas.

“As far as the market goes, we’re definitely seeing a flight to more quality locations,” Carl Christie of NAI Hunneman tells GlobeSt.com. “For instance, we sold a building on Bay State Road that was 19-units, and that sold for a 4% cap rate, which is pretty low. But they aren’t making any more buildings on bay state road, so it commands a good price.” The property sold for $5 million, as previously reported by GlobeSt.com.

A 21-unit apartment building, 333 Harvard St., sold recently to Stephen Wolfberg for $5.28 million. The property is a 28,895-sf, four-story building with five single-bedroom units and 16 two-bedroom units. The vacant building was formerly occupied by Weston Jesuit School of Theology as a student residence. The school is merging with Boston College as part of their theological program, earning the new moniker: the Ecclesiastical Faculty at Boston College. Dan McGee and Christie of NAI Hunneman brokered this deal for the seller and procured the buyer.

“The Harvard Street deal sold at a 6% cap rate,” Christie explains, “which is still a pretty aggressive cap rate in relation to a pretty good price in this market.” He points to its location in Cambridge as to its favorable price. “It is walking distance to Harvard Square, and walking distance to Central Square.”

Christie points to a few deal NAI Hunneman is bring to market, as examples of this location value. A rare 90-unit property in Arlington on Mass Avenue is asking for $14.5 million and 31-35 South St.–a 34-unit property in Brighton–which is asking $8 million.

“You know, markets like Cambridge or Downtown Boston or Back Bay or Newton,” Christie explains. “That’s where you’re still commanding top dollar. Markets outside greater Boston, outside 128 or 495, have softened a bit. Cap rates have increased. That’s just sort of the reality.”

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