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A Chartwell Seniors Housing REIT in Toronto.

Fred Lum/The Globe and Mail

One of Canada's largest owners of apartment buildings is beefing up its portfolio, a deal that adds more signs of life to a commercial real estate sector that had largely gone quiet.

Canadian Apartment Properties REIT is acquiring a portfolio of apartment buildings in Montreal for $490-million. The real estate investment trust also launched a $250-million bought deal to help pay for the purchase.

The acquisition adds 3,661 suites to CAP REIT's Montreal portfolio, 80 per cent growth in just one deal. The deal was announced the same day that REITs traded well in Canada, with CAP REIT units climbing 3.2 per cent.

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NorthWest Healthcare Properties REIT also launched a financing on Monday, selling $50-million worth of convertible debentures.

Earlier this month CAP REIT closed a $170-million acquisition of apartment buildings in Vancouver.

RBC Dominion Securities is leading the latest financing.

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