Trio converts abandon high school into 31 apartments

Building was purchased for $100K

Former Auberle Education Center in Homestead, Pennsylvania (Google Maps, Getty)
Former Auberle Education Center in Homestead, Pennsylvania (Google Maps, Getty)

Some people spend their time in high school looking forward to getting out. Others have a different plan in mind.

A trio of investors have taken an abandoned high school in Homestead, Pennsylvania, and converted it into an apartment building with 31 units, according to CNBC Make It.

(L-R) Dan Spanovich, Jesse Wig and Adam Colucci (Dan Spanovich, Jesse Wig, Adam Colucci)

(L-R) Dan Spanovich, Jesse Wig and Adam Colucci (Dan Spanovich, Jesse Wig, Adam Colucci)

Real estate agent Jesse Wig bought the building in 2019 for $100,000 and, with friend Adam Colucci set about figuring out what to do with the structure.

Suggestions included a beer garden, a WeWork space and a wedding venue, before the two settled on residential space.

“We had big eyes, and after two years of spinning our wheels, all the professionals told us that all roads lead to residential eventually,” Colucci told the outlet.

The "Before" of the former Auberle Education Center in Homestead, Pennsylvania (Instagram/@jessewig, Getty)

The “Before” of the former Auberle Education Center in Homestead, Pennsylvania (Instagram/@jessewig, Getty)

Sign Up for the undefined Newsletter

By signing up, you agree to TheRealDeal Terms of Use and acknowledge the data practices in our Privacy Policy.

They then reached out to developer Dan Spanovich to help with the conversion.

“These old buildings can be very challenging to convert,” Spanovich told the outlet. “We were willing to take a risk regardless of what use we would have for it. We knew that at this cost, we would be able to find some use for it that would generate enough return to satisfy everybody.”

The "After" of the former Auberle Education Center in Homestead, Pennsylvania (Instagram/@jessewig and @loochandsteve, Getty)

The “After” of the former Auberle Education Center in Homestead, Pennsylvania (Instagram/@jessewig and @loochandsteve, Getty)

They originally sought to construct about 60 apartment units in the 50,000-square-foot building. However, much of the square footage was dedicated to common areas such as the gym and hallways, so they were only able to use about half the space for apartments. Overall, the building has 27 one-bedroom and four two-bedroom apartments, with rent set at $1,400 per month for the one-bedroom units and $1,625 for the two-bedroom units.

The "After" of the former Auberle Education Center in Homestead, Pennsylvania (Instagram/@jessewig and @loochandsteve, Getty)

The “After” of the former Auberle Education Center in Homestead, Pennsylvania (Instagram/@jessewig and @loochandsteve, Getty)

After opening in the fall of 2021, the building was fully occupied within six months, CNBC reported. The trio wasn’t done with converting abandoned schools, having purchased three more since the original opened, the outlet said.

— Ted Glanzer