Old Town complex sells to Avanath as part of firm’s affordable housing buying spree

The affordable housing investor picked up the 59-unit Renaissance North in Old Town
By Joe Ward |
Research by Haru Coryne
March 18, 2019 01:00PM

Avanath Capital CEO Daryl Carter and 551 West North Avenue

Avanath Capital Management paid $15.45 million for an Old Town apartment complex as the affordable-housing investors continue to build up their Chicago portfolio.

California-based Avanath on March 11 picked up the 59-unit Renaissance North apartment building at 551 West North Avenue, Cook County property records show. The company financed the deal with a $7.85 million acquisition loan from CBRE Multifamily Capital.

Eighteen of the 59 units in the Renaissance North must be designated as public housing apartments due to an operating agreement with the Chicago Housing Authority that the complex’s developer signed in 2002, a CHA spokesperson said.

It is unclear if Avanath, a firm that invests in affordable and workforce housing nationwide, will convert the remaining units into affordable housing. A spokesperson for the firm did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The acquisition is a part of Avanath’s continued expansion in Chicago, as the city works to boost its affordable housing options.

Avanath CEO Daryl Carter said the company chose to expand in Chicago because of its economic revitalization and a “dire need” for affordable housing, according to media reports.

Last year, the firm spent $72 million to acquire 668 units in apartment complexes in Willowbrook and on Chicago’s South Side, bringing their local portfolio at the time to 840 units. The company first invested in the Chicago market in 2013, when it picked up a 180-unit multifamily building in Naperville.

Local development firm Renaissance Companies sold the Old Town apartment building. The firm, which has four multifamily and two office holdings in the area, delivered the Old Town building in 2001. The property contains studio, one and two-bedroom units in addition to a fifth-floor penthouse.

Affordable housing has increasingly become an issue in Chicago, especially in light of the thousand of new apartment units included in mega-developments receiving tax increment financing and other public subsidies. Related Midwest, the developer behind the 78’s proposed 10,000 apartments, is also redeveloping the former CHA complex known as Lathrop Homes.