NEW YORK CITY-Marking the latest in several family-owned sales in Harlem, two buildings totaling 61free-market residential units have been sold for $3.9 million, in a deal that closed last month. A pair of senior executive brokers from Bensen and Associates negotiated both sides of the transaction. Amit Doshi represented seller the Faust family, who have owned the buildings for 10 years, while Adelaide Polsinelli brokered on behalf of first-time buyers Edificio LLC, a seven-member consortium.

Polsinelli tells that new investors looking at Harlem space is a sign of the times. “Families who have owned property in Harlem for years are selling now because they never thought they’d see these kinds of offers five years ago, and buyers are capitalizing on low interest rates and snapping up space as a hedge on the Harlem revival,” says Polsinelli. “Those with short-term goals are renovating the properties they have owned for decades and then putting them on the market, while Manhattan investors are starting to look at this less-prime real estate, as some sections of Harlem have seen a 25% to 30% rent spike over the past five years.”

The pre-war properties are 507 W. 147th St., a 31-unit, five-story building; and 474 W. 150th St., a 30-unit, six-story building. The two properties recently underwent a $500,000, five-year renovation. “When you fix up a place like that, you tend to see a lot more people willing to move further North to get $800 per month rents,” Polsinelli tells The seller’s legal counsel was provided by Jonathan Hoffman and Stuart Ball of Westerman, Ball, Ederer, Miller and Sharfstein LLP, while the buyer was advised by Richard Fries of Swidler, Berlin, Shereff & Friedman LLP.

Recent notable Harlem transactions include construction of a wholesale/retail facility, a large parcel which is attracting Big Box retail interest and a $6 million mixed-use project.