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MARGATE, FL-UBS Realty Investors LLC ended its 14-year hold on the 280-unit Lakes of Margate with the asset’s sale to Advenir. The Aventura, FL-based buyer paid $17.6 million for the class A property, beating out 34 other offers in the process.

But getting to the closing table was a challenge, according to selling broker Avery Klann with Apartment Realty Advisors’ Boca Ratan, FL office. Klann tells GlobeSt.com that the asset at 5750 Lakeside Dr. was originally introduced to the market in May 2008. A group was set to close on the deal in 2008, Klann explains, when the capital markets crashed in September. “The deal fell apart, and the seller decided to pull it off the market,” adds Klann, who partnered with ARA’s Hampton Beebe and Richard Donnellan on behalf of the Hartford, CT-based seller.

When the product was re-introduced to the market in April 2009, the response was overwhelming. “We’re seeing the appetite to pursue and purchase deals in South Florida hitting an all-time high,” Klann says. “One of the big reasons is because most investors feel we’ve hit bottom, and buyers are aggressively trying to tie up opportunities and not miss out on the deal of a lifetime.”

Klann goes on to say that Advenir was the logical choice for the 95%-occuped Lakes of Margate because of that company’s local knowledge, strong track record and ability to raise equity. Also important was that Advenir has a good relationship with the agency lenders, he comments. Freddie Mac was the financier on the deal.

With the property in hand, Advenir plans to invest north of half a million dollars in upgrades and additions, such as a business center and an expanded fitness center. The new owner will self-manage the asset.

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