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PEARLAND, TX-A search for underutilized assets in the market has paid off for a Los Angeles buyer as it acquires the 286-unit Whispering Winds Apartments. The new owner and first-time buyer in Greater Houston has allocated $17 million for the acquisition and renovation of the class B complex.

Jason Post, president of Post Investment Group, says the 23-year-old complex, situated at 2902 Whispering Winds Dr., has low density and tremendous upside in rents are 15% below the market’s average rate. He adds that Whispering Winds’ location in a market with high barriers to entry simply spurred Post Investment’s desire to buy the asset from All State Realty Group in East Lansing, MI.

“This has phenomenal bones. We felt if we could tweak the units, we could raise the rents to the level of similar assets in the submarket,” Post tells GlobeSt.com. He says that $5,000 per door will go into renovating the 88%-occupied Whispering Winds. The work begins in January. Pinnacle Properties LLC, headquartered in Charlotte, NC, will manage and lease the complex.

Situated on 17.4 acres, Whispering Winds Apartments has one-, two- and three-bedroom units measuring from 585 sf to 1,366 sf. Rents are $599 to $1,110 per month.

Ryan Terrell with Hendricks & Partners’ Houston office brokered the transaction. Tucker Knight, managing director with Holliday Fenoglio Fowler LP’s Houston team, arranged financing at 5.27% through Freddie Mac and equity from NDC Capital Partners LLC of New York City.

While Post Investment prepares to upgrade its first Houston acquisition, it has an eye on a second, which is under contract. The Post president says he is seeking even more properties throughout the state to add to its growing portfolio. Prior to forming Post Investment, Jason Post was principal investor in Lagovent Real Estate Group LLC, which acquired four multifamily assets in Austin, Dallas and Fort Worth.

The buyer is interested in class B and class C complexes in value-add scenarios from $15 million to $100 million. “We’re heavily drawn to the Texas market,” Post adds. “We sold off the majority of our Los Angeles assets in 2006 and have reallocated investment dollars in Texas.”

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