The leading multifamily lenders for 2006 were Wachovia, Washington Mutual Bank, and Deutsche Bank Commercial Real Estate, according to a multifamily lending report from the Mortgage Bankers Association.Retaining its 2005 position, Wachovia was again the largest multifamily lender in 2006 in dollar terms, closing 1,465 multifamily loans for a total of $16.1 billion. The average loan size was $11 million. WaMu Bank and Deutsche Bank CRE were the No. 2 and No. 3 multifamily lenders, with multifamily lending activity of $9.2 billion and $6.3 billion, respectively. Multifamily lending rose by $5 billion in 2006, according to the MBA. The multifamily lending market grew by 4%, from $133 billion in closed loans in 2005 to $138 billion in 2006, the trade group said. The report, which focuses on apartment buildings with five or more units, also found an average loan size of $2.7 million based on 50,959 loan originations. Very small multifamily loans saw a dropoff in dollar volume of 13% in 2006, the MBA reported. The organization can be found online at http://www.mortgagebankers.org.

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