Residents of Cedar Square, a major group of off-campus apartments and housing properties, have a new management company, and will live under new ownership in the near future.
Cedar Square Management LLC took over the day-to-day operations Sept. 1 from Cedar Square LLC, which owns all Cedar Square properties, according to a letter distributed to residents.
Salvatore Bando Jr., a partner of Cedar Square Management, said taking over management is only the first phase of a complete takeover.
“Cedar Square LLC were looking to hand over the reigns of management to another company,” Bando said. “Taking over management is the first step of purchasing the Cedar Square portfolio.”
Bando, whose brother Santino is also a partner, said if all goes as planned, Cedar Square Management will own the more than 200 units and 19 buildings of Cedar Square within the next three years. The pair already operate several Marquette-area properties as Select Management LLC.
“(This) was a necessary action for our plans to progress,” Bando said.
The Bando brothers were presented with the opportunity to purchase the properties after the previous owners decided to sell.
Bill Brachman owned and operated the Cedar Square properties under Cedar Square LLC with his wife, Judy, for 13 years before deciding to relinquish ownership.
“For the first time in my life, I plan on being retired,” Brachman said. “When we took over, we didn’t envision ever selling. But I think new blood and new ownership will really invigorate the management, and residents will be just as happy.”
Bando is already concentrating on improving the business, satisfying residents and improving units.
“From a business perspective, we have plans to clean up the account and improve our cash flow,” Bando said. “Updates are needed for the properties, and we definitely plan on fixing up units with new countertops or bathrooms.”
Residents are looking forward to new management after having some trouble with the old owners.
“They (Cedar Square LLC) were a little disorganized,” said Louisa Walker, a senior in the College of Communication.
Ted Lempke, a junior in the College of Arts & Sciences, said the students who lived in the property before him had other issues.
“I was informed by students that management was poor and maintenance work was done in an untimely manner,” Lempke said.
Bando is making sure his management company will be up to residents’ standards.
“Our staff will be professional and courteous in handling every request or inquiry,” Bando said. “They can expect their concerns to be addressed quickly and for maintenance to be done in a timely and efficient manner.”
Residents want to see the new management group improve ordinary issues with off-campus living.
“It would be great if they were more responsive to repairs, maintenance and returning phone calls,” Walker said.
Lempke has already witnessed the proactive attitude of management.
“From what I’ve seen, they have done a better job,” Lempke said. “I went in last Friday to talk about repairs needing to be made, and the next Monday the repair men were fixing the problems.”
Bando is looking forward to managing the property and becoming its owner in the future.
“At the end of the day, residents want a landlord to be honest and fair, which is exactly what we’ll be,” Bando said. “We have every intention of providing the best service we can and making our tenants happy.”