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HOUSTON-Right Place Properties is on its way to meeting a 1,000-unit acquisition goal by the end of the year. In separate transactions, the Phoenix-based buyer has closed on the abutting 200-unit Oakwood Gardens and 200-unit Asbury Park, spending a total of $9.1 million for the northwest Houston block.

Right Place Properties snagged the Oakwood Gardens at 5625 Antoine Dr. from New York City-based GFI Capital Resources Group Inc., which had acquired it two years ago in a four-asset portfolio. Right Place bought Asbury Park at 6200 W. Tidwell Rd. from Lexington Trails American Housing Foundation in Dallas. The 93%-leased complexes, kitty-cornered from one another, are being primed as condos down the road.

“We tend to see that area of town as a transitional type, where a lot of owners have vacated their Katrina people and are starting to reposition that neighborhood again,” says Brooks Spilsbury, acquisitions director of Red Door Group Inc., a Phoenix-based sister company of Right Place Properties.

Spilsbury, who represented the buy side, says the plan at this time is to make minor upgrades, such as painting, resurfacing parking lots and air conditioner maintenance. Major interior renovations will take place when the one-, two- and three-bedroom units are brought to market as condominiums after a three- to five-year hold, he tells GlobeSt.com.

The 35-year-old units average 1,031 sf to 1,142 sf. Monthly rents average $580. Ric Holway vice president with Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services in Phoenix, and Robert Su, senior investment associate with the Houston office, represented Oakwood Gardens’ seller. Apartment Realty Advisors partner Clifford P. McDaniel and vice president Russell D. Jones, both in Houston, negotiated the deal for Asbury Park’s seller.

The double buy brings Right Place Properties’ Houston holdings to five properties and a sixth one closing next month–an 88-unit complex in northwest Houston. When the deal’s done, it will have amassed 800 units in the regionsince October 2007.“In 2009, we have the same goal–another 1,000 a year,” Spilsbury says. “It’ll be the same each year for the next five years unless the market really softens.” Also on Right Place Properties’ drawing board is entry into Dallas and San Antonio, but that’s not likely to happen before mid-2009, he adds.

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