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COCONUT CREEK, FL-Chicago-based Laramar Group has acquired the 366-unit Hillsboro Bay Club Apartments at 3600 West Hillsboro Boulevard.

Built in 1998, Hillsboro Bay Club was acquired by Laramar because there is opportunity to add value to the property through improved management and minor capital expenditures. The acquisition price was not released. Laramar president Jeff Elowe tells GlobeSt.com that the acquisition was off-market. “The property had been offered to a condo converter at a much higher price,” Elowe says. “It had the lowest occupancy rates in the market and it was also was of the nicest properties.”

Elowe says Laramar plans to increase occupancy by, among other initiatives, adding amenities to the property, such as a fitness center and business center. “It has great space but offers very few amenities,” he says.

The acquisition is part of Laramar’s plans to expand its activities in South Florida. The company recently opened a regional office at 8461 Lake Worth Road in Lake Worth and will ultimately employ six to 10 people. The new office will be dedicated to acquiring multifamily properties that have value-added opportunities. Laramar hired Ron Roan as vice president of acquisitions to lead the Florida investment program. Prior to joining the company, Roan was vice president of Creative Choice Homes, Inc. where he was responsible for acquiring existing communities and new multifamily development throughout Florida. “We believe that there are opportunities to buy property in South Florida,” Elowe says. “Some owners and developers were late in the cycle and have liquidity options.”

Laramar recently closed a $350 million investment fund called the Laramar Multi-Family Value Fund the will give the company the ability to acquire $1.4 billion in value-add multi-family real estate assets throughout the country.

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