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JENKINTOWN, PA-American Financial Realty Trust recently added two tenants to its portfolio and disposed of a small office property. The locally based REIT focuses on acquiring and leasing properties occupied by financial institutions.

In its hometown, American Financial completed a 20-year, 48,000-sf lease agreement with Shurgard Storage Centers Inc. at its 172,000-sf Jenkins Court building. The lease commences in July 2004 at an annual triple net rate of $120,000. There are periodic increases throughout the term, according to American Family COO Glenn Blumenthal. “The addition of Shurgard Storage to the Jenkins Court property increases the percentage of income derived from credit tenants in this facility and stabilizes the occupancy and income in the complex for many years to come,” he says.

In Richmond, VA, American Financial entered into a 10-year triple net lease with SouthTrust Bank to occupy approximately 5,000 sf in a former Wachovia Bank branch. The lease commences in February 2004 at an annual rate of $70,000, and increases throughout the term. It is American Financial’s first lease agreement with the bank, says American Financial president/CEO Nicholas Schorsch, adding that he hopes it is “the first of many.”

The property being sold is a 26,000-sf, non- core office building in North Biscayne, FL. It is being sold because it had too few financial tenants, says Blumenthal. The gross sale price is $3.35 million. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2004, reducing vacancy in the company’s portfolio by more than 17,000 sf and reducing operating expenses by more than $115,000 a year.

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