Real estate investment trust AvalonBay Communities (AVB) reported Monday $107.6 million in funds from operations, or $1.17 a share, for the third quarter, up from $84.6 million, or 98 cents a share, a year ago. The Arlington, Va., REIT that acquires, builds and manages apartments, attributed the 19.4% increase per share to growing revenue from established multifamily communities. Year-to-date rental revenue was up 5.8% over last year, with total revenue at $253.2 million. Net income for AvalonBay was $44.8 million, up from $24.7 million in the third quarter of 2010. Earnings per share hit 49 cents for the quarter, up from 29 cents a year ago. Year-to-date earnings per share was $1.33, down 24.4% from $1.76 in 2010, largely due to declining real estate sales. The company started construction on four apartment communities during the third quarter. The new projects total 921 apartment homes and development costs of $210.1 million. AvalonBay reported $759 million in unrestricted cash and cash in escrow, as of Sept. 30. For the fourth quarter of 2011, the company expects earnings per share in the range of 54 cents to 58 cents. It expects EPS for the full year 2011 to be in the range of $1.84 to $1.88. Write to Andrew Scoggin. Follow him on Twitter @ascoggin.