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FITCHBURG, WI-Mandel Group has purchased New Fountains Apartments for $21.7 million from a private East Coast investor. Previously owned by a partnership of four families, the 578-unit complex at 5401 Williamsburg Way has maintained a historic occupancy rate in the low-90s. Paul A. DeKruiff, SVP in NorthMarq Capital’s Chicago office, represented the East Coast investor selling the property, while Mandel was represented in-house.

“The seller was exiting the marketplace, and this was the only asset they had left in the area,” DeKruiff tells GlobeSt.com. “It gave Mandel an instant presence in the Madison marketplace to launch further operations there.” The seller had owned the property for decades and originally retained NorthMarq for help in refinancing the property, but the decision was made to sell based on opportunities that presented themselves within the market.

“We made a conscious effort a few years ago to fully integrate NorthMarq’s capabilities with investment sales,” DeKruiff says. “We are continuing to grow the investment sale business to compliment our debt capabilities within NorthMarq, and as of today, we have capabilities nationally.”

Mandel bought New Fountains at a 7.25% cap rate on actual revenue, and plans an extensive renovation of the apartment community. Built in 1972 and last renovated in the early 1990s, the property offers a mix of mostly one- and two-bedrooms, with a small percentage of studios. Units average around 800 square feet, with rental rates ranging from $600 to $750 a month.

New Fountains is located in the southwestern submarket of the Madison, WI metro area. “Fitchburg is holding up very well,” DeKruiff says. “The market there did not have a great reputation for a while, but in the last 10 years, there has been a significant amount of reinvestment. That’s what Mandel saw: long-term stable returns in that submarket.”

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