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BOSTON-A Scottish real estate company has paid more than $6 million to acquire two residential properties in the Hub’s upscale Back Bay. Heritor’s Consultants appears to be company behind the purchase of 273 and 319 Beacon St., a pair of brownstones secured in simultaneous but separate transactions. Sources say the firm may be looking at offering the units as short-term luxury apartment rentals.<p.Suffolk County Real Estate records indicate the buyer of 273 Beacon St. to be Heritor's 273 Beacon St. LLC and that of the latter asset as 319 Beacon St. LLC. In both cases, Christopher Buchan of Edinburgh is listed as the manager, while the business address is c/o a suburban Boston law firm, Hall & Sullivan. The attorney, Patrick Hall, did acknowledge to GlobeSt.com a "relationship" with Heritor's, but declined further comment or to say what plans the new owners have for the properties.

According to industry sources, however, Heritor’s appears to be angling for a short-term rental program similar to one it recently launched in its home base. In January, the firm announced plans to take 50 of its existing 300 residential properties in Scotland and convert them to short-term rentals.

Heritor’s paid $3.2 million for 273 Beacon St., a five-story, 8,000-sf building that was broken up into seven units, with a mix of studios and one-bedroom units, headlined by a 2,500-sf, three-bedroom unit. The company paid $3.5 million for 319 Beacon St., located a few blocks west from 273 Beacon St. between Clarendon and Exeter streets. The 273 Beacon St. building was owned for many years by James Davis, president of New Balance Shoes Inc., who donated it recently to an educational institution. Sources say the institution had considered developing the property but instead opted to sell in the heated real estate environment. “It’s a great building,” says one broker familiar with the 130-year-old property.

Efforts to contact Heritor’s and Buchan through Hall and via their headquarters in Edinburgh were unsuccessful. According to the firm’s website, Heritor’s primary investment strategy is through a so-called “let-to-buy” program in which properties are bought as a discount, refurbished and rented out for seven to 10 years before being resold, ostensibly at a premium. In January, however, the firm announced that a slowdown in that program had led them to pursue the short-term corporate rental concept. One broker in Boston who has spoken with an intermediary says that concept sounds like Heritor’s plans for the Boston buildings.

According to one published report, Heritor’s hopes to have 200 such apartments in operation over the near term, with most in Glasgow and Edinburgh. There was no mention of an international strategy.

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