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Manteca apartment rents: Some go down others stay unchanged
Paseo Villa Apartments. - photo by HIME ROMERO
Apartment rents either were unchanged or dropped slightly in 2010 thanks to the affordability of homes in Manteca.

Affordable home prices have prompted upsurge in vacancy rates in a number of complexes although not enough to force a major drop in rent prices. While the vacancy rate is still in the low to middle single digits in Manteca, it was enough movement to prompt apartment owners to entice tenants to stay put by either holding rents unchanged or dropping them slightly.

Apartment owners find themselves competing against half-plexes, two bedroom and other bathroom homes and even apartment condo conversions for tenants.

The rents for two bedrooms and one bathroom homes in Manteca as well as duplexes have dropped below $800 a month in many cases. That’s lower than all of the two bedroom and one bathroom apartments in the Manteca Bulletin’s annual survey. However, apartment rents usually cover the cost of municipal water, sewer and garbage that can easily cost $85 per month.

Also posing a challenge are the condo conversions from the former Cherry Lane Apartments on Cherry Lane at Union Road. At the peak of the housing market they were fetching $225,000 for a two bedroom one bathroom unit. Today, many are selling to investors for between $48,000 and $55,000. At that price, they can undercut the upper tiers of apartments in Manteca in terms of rent and still have a positive cash flow.

Plans for AKF Homes to break ground for a 153-unit apartment complex on Atherton Drive near the Union Pacific tracks east of Seeno Drive this Spring will have little, if any, impact on the apartments included in the Bulletin’s survey.

That is because the complex is for low- and moderate-income renters.

The financing plan for the 7.86-acre project include tax-exempt bonds, deferral of part of the development fees, and 4 percent low income housing credits. The $12.5 million RDA loan will be payable with residual cash receipts after the developer pays whatever development fees are deferred.

Dubbed Belgaio Apartments, the complex will look similar to its kissing cousin, the luxury 295-unit Paseo Villas just down the street along Atherton Drive.

 Belagio Apartments will consist of a tot lot, BBQ area, and community room with kitchen, fitness room, computer room, and laundry facilities. Each unit would have blinds, carpeting, patios, and appliances.