BRADENTON -- A Bradenton company that renovated and expanded a low-income apartment complex on the edge of the county's southern industrial corridor has sold it after 18 years of ownership.
The Elm Lake Apartments, a 64-unit complex at 6318 14th St. E, sold for $2.5 million on April 17 to a Largo buyer, according to Manatee County property records. The new owner, a company managed by Benjamin Mallah, is one of several related companies that own apartments.
The buyer paid the equivalent of $39,062 per unit, which is in line with the average selling price for multifamily units sold in Manatee County during the first quarter of 2015, according to a report generated by the Sarasota office of Coldwell Banker Commercial NRT.
The transaction allowed the seller to pay off a $1.18 million mortgage it took out in 1997. Elm Lake Apartments LTD, one of several companies managed by Sam F. Hardee of Bradenton, purchased the apartments that year for $375,000. At the time, it consisted of a single eight-unit apartment building, according to county records. Over the next two years, permitting records show, Hardee's company built three 16-unit buildings on the 4.6-acre property, as well as another eight-unit building and a recreation center. The property is at the northern edge of the Whitfield industrial district between U.S. 41 and U.S. 301.
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The first apartments on the property were built in 1983.
Units in the complex range between a 592-square-foot one-bedroom model to two- and three-bedroom models of more than 1,000 square feet each. The property's amenities include a clubhouse, basketball court, volleyball court, playground and two onsite laundry facilities.
One of Hardee's companies previously ran into financial trouble with another Bradenton property it owned, the Citrus Meadows Apartments. In 2011, the 200-unit complex was foreclosed upon after Hardee's company lost in a $5.7 million suit brought by mortgagor IMG Investment LLC, according to court records. The complex was sold the following year for $6.75 million.
Elm Lake's new owner has previously owned apartments in Bradenton. One of Mallah's companies sold the 92-unit Cortez Place Apartments in 2011 for $4.64 million after owning it for four years.
The Elm Lake apartments will remain a low-income complex. The Florida Housing Finance Corp. has extended a low-income housing agreement it had with the previous owner to the new owner.
Marcus & Millichap, an Encino, Calif.-based commercial real estate investment services firm, represented the buyer in the transaction.
Matt M. Johnson, Herald business reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7027, or on Twitter @MattAtBradenton.