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Article Adapted from:

by James Fink – Reporter, Buffalo Business First

April 29, 2022

Located at 330 Linwood Avenue, the brick building sits almost at the corner of Delaware Avenue. Image Courtesy: Howard Hanna

More than three years after acquiring the former Sheehan Residence from the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo, the Frontier Group of Cos. has opened the Linwood Avenue property as a $3 million market-rate apartment complex.

The Residences at Linwood Manor, 330 Linwood Ave., has 20 one-bedroom and studio units.

“We didn’t gut the building, but we did modify what was there,” said Chris Wietig, Frontier director of business development.

Constructed in 1928 as the rectory for the St. Joseph’s New Cathedral on Delaware Avenue, the building became a retirement home for diocesan clergy after the cathedral was demolished in 1976.

The diocese closed the building more than five years ago, shifted the retirement home to other properties and put the building on the market in mid-2018. Through its Mingo Junction Steel Works LLC affiliate, Frontier bought the building in February 2019 for $1.3 million, according to filings in the Erie County Clerk’s office.

Wietig said renovations included new kitchens and upgraded bathrooms and restoration of hardwood floors, woodwork, leaded glass windows and working fireplaces.

Architect was Daryl Martin of Orchard Park, construction manager was the Savarino Cos. and property manager is Standard Property Management Co. of Buffalo.

Buffalo housing market remains strong

Despite increased interest rates, limited inventory and bidding wars, homebuyers continue to enter the market.

A national residential real estate trends study released April 28 by Bank of America found that 65% of prospective buyers make an offer within three days of touring a home and 20% are willing to make an immediate offer.

“It is still a strong seller’s market,” said Anthony Saad, Bank of America vice president of preferred lending market lender for Upstate New York and based in Buffalo regional headquarters. “We are still seeing houses sell within 10 days of their listing.”

A standard 30-year, fixed-interest rate was 5.10% on April 28, compared to 2.98% on April 28, 2021. Saad said loan writing activity at Bank of America hasn’t dropped off.

“The issue really is inventory,” Saad said.

The Buffalo Niagara Association of Realtors Multiple Listing System had 808 single-family houses listed for saleon April 28 and 839 single-family homes on April 12.

“We haven’t seen a demand like this for quite some time,” Saad said. “Everything remains in place for the market to remain strong.”

In other real estate news:

• A former auto repair and collision shop at 290 Lake Ave. in the Village of Hamburg is about to find new life. Paul Lamparelli. Christian Gorino and Joseph Battin are working with the Hamburg Industrial Development Agency on a plan to turn the former Schmidt’s Collision and Glass shop into a three-story, 19,260-square-foot building with 10 market-rate apartments and 6,420 square feet of commercial space.

The building, damaged in a 2014 blizzard, will be demolished and replaced by a new structure.The Hamburg IDA approved $427,301 in sales, mortgage recording and property tax breaks for the $4.5 million project.