ARI Financial Group CEO buys Hialeah multifamily-retail portfolio for $42M

Deal is for 117 units, two shopping plazas

ARI Financial Group CEO buys Hialeah multifamily-retail portfolio for $42M
Google Street View of 1355 West 44th Place, 1301 West 26th Place, 650 East Ninth Street and 1900 West 60th Street (Google Maps)

UPDATED, Sept. 13, 1:40 p.m.: A portfolio of four multifamily and retail properties in Hialeah traded for $41.9 million.

Four buyers managed by Eric Bouskila, principal and CEO of Aventura-based ARI Financial Group, in partnership with Golani Investments, scooped up the real estate, according to Amir Hayun of Golani.

The sellers are limited liability companies tied to the Levy family and managed by Steven Levy. Golani Investments, a Hialeah-based commercial real estate investor, has been managing the portfolio for the past 25 years and will continue to operate it, Hayun said.

ARI Financial is a boutique financial firm specializing in life insurance, according to its website.

Bouskila’s groups scored $31 million in acquisition financing in a series of loans from Ocean Bank, according to a news release.

The portfolio is more than 95 percent occupied, Hayun added. The plan is to give the real estate a facelift and increase rents, he said.

In the biggest deal, the 90-unit apartment complex at 1355 West 44th Place traded for $16.3 million. The three-story complex was built in 1973 on 2.9 acres, property records show.

The other multifamily property is the 27-unit Clearview apartment building at 1301 West 26th Place, which sold for $4.8 million. The four-story building also was built in 1973 on nearly half an acre.

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The 52,547-square-foot shopping plaza at 1900 West 60th Street traded for $12.1 million. Built in 1982, the two-story center is on 3.7 acres.

Also, the 32,745-square-foot Florida Shopping Center at 650 East Ninth Street sold for $8.8 million. The single-story plaza is on 2.2 acres.

The portfolio deal is part of a Hialeah shopping spree for Bouskila and Golani Investments. The duo also is in the process of buying a two-building, 60-unit multifamily property at 955-975 West 74th Street, according to Hayun. Closing is expected on Friday.

Separately, Golani Investments also plans to purchase an 84-unit apartment complex at 6850 West 14th Court for $11.8 million, with closing tentatively scheduled for next week, Hayun said. The complex was built in 1966 on 2.8 acres, records show.

These are not the first real estate deals in Hialeah for Hayun. He, in partnership with Levy, through an affiliate, sold the 112-unit Lago Mar multifamily complex in August to Rental Asset Management for $17.5 million.

Hialeah, in northwest Miami-Dade County, has caught the eye of investors as the newest frontier for multifamily purchases and development. The city also may be getting a 343-unit rental complex with townhouses and apartment buildings next to the Hialeah Park racetrack and casino. The complex is part of a larger development proposal, which includes a charter school, developed by the Brunetti family that owns Hialeah Park, Prestige Companies and Mater Academy.

The apartment construction and deal activity reflects a hot market fueled by unprecedented demand. Although Berkadia reported mid-year average rent increases across South Florida of 7.9 percent, year over year, some submarkets are seeking hikes of as much as 24 percent.