Location:Sacramento, Calif.
Developer:Jamboree Housing Corp.
Builder:Precision General Commercial Contractors
Architect:Gelfand Partners Architects
Opened:September 2012
Number of units:105
Unit mix:Single-resident occupancy studios
Rents: Before renovation: $350 to $680; after renovation: $399 to $599

Jamboree Housing knows the benefits of perfect timing all too well. For years, developers had tried to take the blighted, unkempt, vintage-1920s Hotel Berry in Sacramento, Calif., and transform it into a gorgeous piece of property, but failed in their attempts. Yet, with patience, great partners, and a preparedness to manage the complex project, Jamboree turned it into a historic, mixed-use renovation of single-resident-occupancy studios.

“The key is the Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency,” says Michael Massie, housing development director at Jamboree. “They carried the deal when it was dark. They put together a viable capital structure.”

It took a tremendous amount of money and innovative planning, but the perfect timing brought new opportunities for the team.

“This really came along at the exact right time,” Massie says. “We were able to use some financing ­vehicles that didn’t exist before, and some that don’t exist currently.”

The team secured great equity pricing on its low-income housing tax credits to keep the rents low and the team free of hard debt.

But even beyond the complicated financing structure, the developers had to take a step back once they peeled away the layers of the old units, to deal with eight decades of accumulated issues: namely, a long ­period of deferred maintenance. “It’s such a jewel, but it was mistreated for quite some time,” Massie says. “So it really needed some tender love and care.”

The building’s first floor was remade into shared spaces that foster camaraderie and offer social services from Jamboree and Transitional Living & Community Support, a local nonprofit rehab agency.