Columbus firm pays $25M for two apartment buildings

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Two multifamily properties, one in Brooklyn Center and another in Brooklyn Park, have been purchased by the Huber Equity Group for a combined $25 million, according to public documents.

The Lux Apartments, at 6400 Summit Drive N. in Brooklyn Center, sold for $17.3 million, while the Granite Ridge Apartments, located at 7521 Jersey Ave N. in Brooklyn Park, went for a smaller $8.8 million. Both buildings were originally owned by the Soderberg Apartment Specialists.

These two properties mark Columbus, Ohio-based Huber’s first foray into the Twin Cities multifamily market. The group, according to Ohio Secretary of State filings, has been active since late 2020. It has eight properties, most of which are in Ohio. Huber declined to interview for this story but sent a statement about the purchase by email.

“This strategic move reflects our commitment to entering vibrant and growing markets, and we look forward to contributing positively to the city’s landscape,” the statement said.

Jim Soderberg, in an interview with Finance & Commerce, said the 92-unit Granite Ridge was built in 1968 and purchased by Soderberg in 2008. This also was a renovation, Soderberg said, which included installing granite countertops, stainless steel sinks, a new roof and new windows. In the end, he sold it for just short of $96,000 per unit.

The Lux also saw a significant renovation completed, which included installing a number of amenities such as an indoor dog play area, a pet grooming station, a movie theater and small “self-serve” market, along with more common amenities like a fitness room. The building was bought by Soderberg’s group in 2018 and was built in the early 1970s. At 140 units, the Lux traded for $123,857 per unit.

“I think a year and a half ago, I think we would have gotten easily $140,000 to 150,000 per unit,” Soderberg said of the Lux. “The interest rates did cause a lot of price drops in the Twin Cities. But I don’t know if interest rates are going to go higher, so it’s part of the reason for selling it, it’s just that it could get even worse.”

Mox Gunderson, an executive vice president for the Colliers Capital Markets team, said that the pricing of the Lux and Granite Ridge fits the market environment we see today and the renovation “commands that type of pricing.”

“Jim typically — and this project is no different — does an extensive rehab and remodel of his projects, and he does a very good job of it, converting older vintage assets into today’s age,” Gunderson said Thursday. “I think it absolutely feels right. For those assets unrenovated, they would likely trade a touch below 100,000 per unit.”

Soderberg said his group had other buyers who put up similar offers but he ultimately chose the Columbus firm because it seemed like they had a company culture similar to Soderberg Apartment Specialists.

According to Hennepin County tax records, the estimated market value of the Lux sits around $20.5 million, while Granite Ridge sits around $5.4 million.

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