The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Local Business

June 3, 2013

Apartment complex wants to change its reputation

New lighting, fresh paint rejuvenate units

ANDERSON, Ind. — Sixty days ago, Courtyard Apartments in Edgewood was a very different place.

"It was an atrocity, let me tell you," said Talor Stewart, a project manager with ValCap Group Purchasing and Construction Management, which now owns the complex at 2725 W. 16th St.

Stewart's been working with the 128-unit Courtyard for about two months, but already gone are the leaky roofs, zig-zag cracked walls and rotting overhang porches. Hallways that were "dark like dungeons," have been brightened with new lighting and fresh paint, he said.

"I can't go in here and put in marble counter tops, because the market doesn't need that," Stewart said. "It's not the Ritz, but it's a safe, clean, comfortable place you can live in" — which he does.

"It has to meet my own standards," said Stewart, who's living on-site during the remodel. "We're keeping the (Courtyard) name, but changing the reputation."

As an example, he points to two side-by-side apartments with nearly identical layouts: a "before and after," he said. The first has torn carpet, outdated counter tops and brown spots where a leak has stained the ceiling. The second he's repaired, and added new paint and flooring.

Like Stewart said, it doesn't compare to the Ritz Carlton by any stretch. "But it's quality housing," he said. "And it's affordable."

A 765-square-foot one-bedroom apartment is $399 without utilities, or $499 with. The average price for a similar unit in that ZIP code is $570 a month, according to the National Association of Realtors.

Stewart said the plan is to "increase revenue through tenant satisfaction," which he hopes will encourage more people to lease, and take care of the place once they do.

"If a property looks neglected, you're only going to attract people who don't care if they mess things up," he said, "If we can show people we care, we'll attract people who care."

Like Baylee Pulliam on Facebook and follow her @BayleeNPulliam on Twitter, or call 648-4250.

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