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ATLANTA-New York City-based GFI Capital Resources Group has acquired a three-property multifamily portfolio with 994 units from New York City-based Sterling Group. The deal’s price tag topped $27 million.

GFI southeast regional acquisition manager Bob Mascaro tells GlobeSt.com that the properties acquired were the 438-unit Park at Bouldercrest in Atlanta, the 268-unit Park at Candler in Decatur and the 288-unit West Chase in Austell. During the past two years GFI has acquired more than 4,000 units in the Atlanta area.

“The owner had owned the properties for over 10 years and appeared to have lost interest in them,” Mascaro says. “We felt they were undermanaged.”

Mascaro says GFI plans to spend several million dollars in capital improvements on the properties, with an aim toward increasing occupancy levels and rents. “We focus on asset preservation rather than a full-blown rehab,” Mascaro says.

GFI currently owns nine properties in the metro area, and has contracts and offers pending on three additional properties. The company hopes to increase its holdings to 10,000 units over the next year. “GFI is rapidly expanding its presence in Atlanta and operates as both the owner and manager for each of the properties,” says Mascaro, who adds that the company is also looking at multifamily properties in Jacksonville, FL.

The company’s apartment portfolio currently totals more than 20,000 units in Houston, Atlanta, Detroit, South Florida and New York City. GFI is actively seeking acquisition opportunities and plans on acquiring more than 10,000 units in 2008. “We’re starting to look at some retail and office properties to begin to diversify our portfolio,” he says.

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