This article is excerpted from Real Estate New York.

Founded in 2004 by former Mets and Red Sox slugger Mo Vaughn and his attorney, Eugene Schneur, Omni New York has quickly made an impact in the arena of affordable housing. The company’s strategy? Purchase properties with some of the worst reputations in New York City, generously upgrade units and amenities, and still keep the projects 100% affordable, while providing a valuable service to long-suffering residents. Last month, a judge awarded the firm the right to purchase the 385-unit Noble Drew Ali Plaza, a dilapidated, crime-plagued compound in Brownsville, Brooklyn where tenants had successfully sued previous owners for withholding heat, water and other basic necessities. Omni intends to spend upward of $20 million in upgrades, beginning with 350 security cameras. In less than three years, the firm has acquired more than 1,300 rental units, mostly in the New York metropolitan area, with another 700 currently under contract.

RENY: How did the two of you come together to form Omni New York?

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