NEW YORK, NY - Wharton Equity Partners, a New York City and Miami-based real estate investment firm, has announced the acquisition of a portfolio of 18 rental apartment communities located across six states in the eastern third of the US. The transaction, which totaled roughly $250 million, adds 4,179 units (3.6 million sq. ft.) to Wharton Equity’s expanding multifamily holdings.
Wharton Equity completed the transaction in joint venture with an institutional partner and BH Management, LLC, an owner/operator of multifamily properties across the United States. BH will serve as property manager with Wharton Equity providing comprehensive asset management and operating partner oversight.
The majority of the portfolio is located in the Carolinas with the remaining properties in Kentucky, Kansas, Texas and Georgia. Wharton Equity was attracted by the strong and growing secondary markets as well as the regional diversification of the portfolio. “Many of these properties are in sought-after communities like Charlotte, Savannah, and Columbia, South Carolina,” says Peter C Lewis, President and founder of Wharton Equity. “The transaction fits all the metrics we look for in a portfolio: diversity, strong locations with in-place economic drivers, favorable acquisition bases, and the opportunity for appreciation through implementation of comprehensive capital improvement programs.”
Over the course of the next 18 months, Wharton Equity will invest approximately $17 million into the properties, completing deferred maintenance as well as making “value-add” upgrades to the properties and interior units. “By making the necessary additional investment,” says Lewis, “we will quickly realize enhanced resident satisfaction and retention, factors that are vital to an investment like this. And because of our partnership with BH, which already manages 75% of the acquired units, we will hit the ground running and rapidly execute our plan.”
Wharton Equity expects to substantially increase its multifamily holdings during 2014, building on its expansion in the space since 2012. “From approximately 18 months ago, we have acquired almost 6,400 units and spent over $400 million in purchasing multifamily properties,” says Lewis. “I am proud of what our team has achieved in such a short period of time, and believe we are well positioned to significantly grow from here.”
Wharton Equity Partners, formed in 1987, is a privately held New York City and Miami-based real estate investment firm which owns and develops residential, office, industrial and hotel properties. In addition, the company is active in acquiring distressed debt and undeveloped land.