The Monroe Building: Office and Medical Building

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Medical-Office | Manassas, VA

Acquisition: Premier purchased this 1970’s era 4 story office building across from Prince William County Hospital from Canadian Life Insurance Co. in 1996. At the time of acquisition, the property was completely vacant and abandoned, and as a result had lost the zoning for which it had been previously grandfathered.

Actions: Premier brought in local counsel to secure the zoning rights, then acted as general contractor in gutting the building to the cinderblock.  At that point we cut in new windows, created an upscale lobby, put on a new roof, rebuilt the elevators, painted the exterior with new accent colors, and finally renamed and repositioned the property for leasing.

Results: The property was then leased up and financed with a 20 year fully amortizing loan.  We achieved 100% occupancy within the first 2 years and significant positive cash flow over the next 10 years, and the loan will soon be paid off.  In the past few years we have lost some tenants due to the economy, but with recent new leasing we are again approaching full occupancy.  Additional income is also generated by two national telecommunications companies who are leasing our roof space for their antennas.

Management: Premier has managed this property from the acquisition to the present. Premier continues to oversee all leasing and tenant fit out as well, for this and all properties.

Ownership: The principals of Premier have significant ownership interest in this property.

Premier Plaza: 70,000 sf Medical Building

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Medical | Springfield, VA

Acquisition: Premier purchased this property from General Electric in 2005. The property was over 30% vacant and had 3 different environmental issues – asbestos, underground storage tank leakage subject to a superfund cleanup, and benzene gases of unknown origin in the basement. The loan was made by Army Air Force Mutual Aid Association based on a long standing relationship with this lender.

Actions: The property was purchased based on current income. Premier took the lead to define and remediate environmental concerns and worked with GE on that process. Premier then operated and leased the property while undertaking a complete renovation of all common areas, replacement of most HVAC components, including a new boiler and 30 FCUs, security systems, pavement work, repositioning and re-naming the property, new signage, building out of storage areas, asbestos remediation, renegotiation of major leases, etc. Premier retained local land use counsel to obtain a special zoning exception and finally converted the entire project to condominium the following year.

Results: At this time all but 2 of the 30 or so condominium units have been sold, and the project has long since become debt free and generated a substantial profit.

Management: Premier has managed the project from acquisition through development and sales. Premier has also been competitively selected by the Condominium Association to manage the property, which is testament to Premier’s excellent ongoing relationship, even though the developer no longer has control.

Ownership: The principals of Premier have significant ownership interest in this property.

Palm Plaza: 4 Building

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Retail-Flex | Pompano Beach, FL

Acquisition: Premier purchased this 4 building property from General Electric in 2007. It was over 25% vacant at the time of purchase and leasing was stagnant. The property returned approximately 6% on current income at the time of purchase. Many existing tenants were long term but with leases about to expire. The Florida market was on the verge a major slump at the time of purchase.

Actions: Vacant suites that had been vacant for many years showed very badly. Premier undertook a gradual program to clean up all of the vacant suites and put them into clean and presentable condition. Premier also re-branded the property and refurbished all of the signage to give the property a new identity and coherent appearance. Premier retained new leasing brokers and gave them large bonuses for leasing. We also had the entire property of 74,000 sf re-measured and found 1,000 additional square feet in the process.

Results: Within 2 years, despite the extremely challenging market conditions, Premier leased an additional 14,000+ square feet, while only losing about 4,000 sf during the same period. While new leases are at below market rates, they are for short terms and the leases are written to rise to market rates over the next several years if the tenants are successful. In addition, we have added almost 40 years to the existing rent roll by extending existing tenants for long terms at little or no cost.

Management: Premier manages the property in every respect.

Ownership: The principals of Premier have significant ownership interest in this property.

The Freedom Building

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Flex-Office | Dulles VA

Acquisition: Premier purchased this building next to Dulles Airport in 2002 for about $100/sf with over 10,000 sf vacant and no long term leases. This attractive building had been built by Col. Oliver North (Iran Contra Affair) in 1997 to house his offices and his bullet proof vest manufacturing company. Subsequently he did a sale lease back on the building, and the bullet proof vest company went bankrupt. The property was about 1/3 office, 1/3 warehouse, and 1/3 manufacturing. Of course, at the time of purchase, the entire manufacturing area was vacant. The property was financed for Premier by the Army Air Force Mutual Aid Association on a 20 year fully amortizing loan.

Actions: Premier had to remove all of the manufacturing equipment and demise and reconfigure the manufacturing area into leasable space. In the process we created a completely new entrance to the building facing the main road, added windows and glass doors, awnings, and walkways. As a result, we were able to lease the entire area. It took several years to fully stabilize this project, since some of the smaller original tenants were technology firms that failed along the way.

Results: The property is now 100% leased and produces positive cash flow.

Management: Premier has managed this property from the outset to the present, including all leasing and contracting.

Ownership: The principals of Premier have significant ownership interest in this property.

White Oak Village Shopping Center

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Retail | Tappahannock, VA

Acquisition: This 72,000 sf property was acquired with Premier’s assistance in 2006. Tenants include Food Lion, Family Dollar, Rite Aid, H&R Block, Subway, Dominos, and a mix of local shops. The property was substantially leased at the time of occupancy, but there was significant deferred maintenance and lack of identity. The goal of the acquisition, which was debt free, was to provide long term stable income.

Actions: Premier worked with the owners to create a new color scheme for the center, then had the property painted and a new accent roof line installed. A signage program was instituted as well, whereby tenants agreed to pay a new monthly signage fee and Landlord installed a new 30 foot high monument sign at the property entrance. Visibility was also improved by selective removal of overgrown trees at the front and side of the property. Leases were renegotiated and extended with several tenants.

Results: By monitoring and working closely with tenants and ownership, Premier has kept occupancy above 90% despite the poor economy. The property is meeting the owners goals of providing regular cash distributions and consistent annual profits.

Management: Premier has managed this property from the outset to the present, including all leasing, fit out, and property improvements.

Ownership: The principals of Premier do not have an ownership interest in this property.

Battleview Business Park

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Flex | Manassas, Virginia

Acquisition: These 3 flex buildings were acquired over several years in the mid 1990s. Two of these buildings were purchased from Riggs Bank (now PNC), and one was purchased from a window manufacturer. The three buildings total about 75,000 sf, and are all in close proximity to each other. Financing was also through Riggs, although the buildings are now debt free.  At the time of purchase, one of the buildings was completely vacant, and one of the buildings had a 15,000 sf tenant in trouble. The buildings were bought at very favorable prices.

Actions: We converted virtually all of the warehouse space in these buildings into office over a period of several years, and subsequently achieved full occupancy. We have replaced roofs and done several major buildouts since then, including creating a lab for a biotech company, a training center for an international technology company, and offices for a utility company.

Results: One of the buildings was sold for a $2M+ profit in 2006. The other buildings are currently debt free. We are recently experiencing some vacancy due to market conditions, but fortunately have the flexibility to lease at very low rents and are currently negotiating with a national tenant.

Management: Premier has managed all of the properties from the beginning in every respect. At the time of sale, Premier also kept the management of the building that was sold.

Ownership: The principals of Premier have significant ownership interest in this property.

Richmond Medical Park

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Medical | Richmond, Virginia

Acquisition: Premier purchased this 5 building, 10 acre campus next to St. Mary’s Hospital in 2006 after a large REIT had backed out of the deal due to environmental problems. The property, which had significant vacancy at the time, was purchased based on in place cash flow and financed with a national insurance company on a 20 year fully amortizing loan.

Actions: Premier systematically renovated the dozen or so vacant suites, putting each one into clean and desirable condition. A new roof was put on the largest building, two 60 ton RTU’s were replaced, and new signage, a new leasing team, and significant landscaping improvement were undertaken. Premier also undertook a major PR effort, both with existing tenants and the local medical community.

Results: Within about a year, the property was over 90% occupied. Unfortunately, we were then struck a tough blow as our largest tenant (17,000 sf) who had been in the building for 22 years left to build their own building. Based on market research and experience, we determined that the 17,000 sf should be divided into 6 or so smaller suites. We brought in an architect to illustrate those suites, and subsequently leased virtually all of those suites to new tenants, stabilizing the property in the process. The property has good cash flow and now enjoys a solid reputation in the community.

Management: Premier has managed this property from the outset to the present, including all leasing, renovations and tenant work.

Ownership: The principals of Premier have significant ownership interest in this property.

Premier Medical Center

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Medical | College Park, Maryland

Acquisition: Premier purchased this aging 45,000 sf medical property from National Life in late 2012.   The property was approximately 25% vacant with a number of leases expiring in less than a year.  The property suffered from other problems as well, including dated branding, weak tenant relations, poor market positioning, and deferred maintenance.  As a result of these challenges, and Premier’s long term relationship with the seller and broker, Premier was able to acquire the property at a nearly 12% cap rate based on current income.  The property was financed by the Army Air Force Mutual Aid Association, and this transaction represented the 7th loan Premier has financed with this lender.  Significant equity was provided by 888 Realty Investors.

Actions: Premier completed a significant renovation of the property, including exterior painting, renovating virtually all of the vacant suites, upgrading electrical components, adding video security, re-engineering and re-paving the parking areas, re-branding the center, installing new signage, and more.  Through enhanced tenant communications, many renewals were signed and many new tenants added.

Results:  During the entire ownership period this property it paid out a 10% current return, and in early 2016 Premier Medical Center was sold at a substantial profit.  Premier is pleased that all of the investors from Premier Medical Center have since committed to participate in future Premier projects.

Management: Premier managed this property from start to finish.

Ownership: The principals of Premier had significant ownership interest in this property.

Mosby Tower

Office-Retail | Fairfax City, Virginia

Involvement: Premier was hired by the absentee owner to manage this 113,000 sf office and retail building with almost 100 tenants at the end of 2011.  The property was 61% occupied at the time and most of the leases were on very short terms.  The resulting financial situation was straining the leasing and maintenance programs and challenging existing tenant and lender relations.

Actions: Premier immediately interviewed the existing onsite staff and determined that they had the necessary skills, but needed more direct supervision.  After hiring the staff, Premier  established low cost but aggressive leasing and cosmetic upgrade programs.  Some of our actions included restoring a restaurant space destroyed by fire to leasable condition, renovating the elevators, solving a long standing water metering issue, working with zoning counsel to modify outdated proffers that were restricting leasing options, updating the form lease documents to provide for easier executions and longer terms, instituting a new website and online advertising program, and dividing some of the larger suites into smaller, more market friendly, units.

Results:  Within 18 months occupancy climbed to 82%.  In 2012 Premier was offered an opportunity to participate in the project financially and became the managing partner of the new ownership entity.  In 2014 we refinanced the property and cashed out the entire original equity investment.  In late 2015 Mosby Tower was sold to a local investment company at a profit that generated a healthy multiple of the owners’ original equity investment. Premier Management continues to manage the property for the new owners.

Management: Premier manages this property.

Ownership: The principals of Premier do not currently have an ownership interest in this property.

Brookhill Shopping Center

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Retail | Richmond, VA

Acquisition: Premier first became aware of this 162,000 sf Food Lion center in 2008 through its relationship with GE, who had owned the property for more than 10 years.  GE wanted to sell the shopping center on several occasions over the years, but they were dogged by environmental problems resulting from the presence of an old dry cleaning plant.  During the cleanup, which took many years, a number of tenants left and new leasing was difficult.  When the property was finally certified clean, occupancy was down to about 67% making it challenging for the seller to meet its minimum price requirement,  Premier subsequently stepped in with a creatively structured purchase offer that gave GE credit for some pending leases while still maintaining a 9 cap on in-place income.

During the acquisition, Premier was approached by Broad Street Ventures, another DC area real estate company trying to build its shopping center portfolio.  Broad Street made Premier an offer to provide both debt and equity financing in return for becoming a  partner in the deal, and a mutually beneficial partnership arrangement followed.  Premier and BSV closed on the acquisition in March 2012.

Actions: Premier Management immediately implemented a number of changes, including a property improvement program and new, highly-focused leasing and marketing strategies.  In addition to those efforts, we called back old prospects that had looked at the center in prior years but had not leased.  We additionally created a targeted list of prospect categories compatible with our tenant mix and demographics for our brokers to pursue.

Our improvement program has initially focused on cosmetic enhancements.  We have installed all new pylon and tenant signs, some with scrolling electronic messages, to bring attention to our new ownership and revitalize our tenants presence. We have installed 800 linear feet of new brightly colored awnings that not only freshen the center but let the community know that changes are underway.  We have installed new landscaping that complies with County requirements, in addition to significantly trimming trees and bushes to improve visibility.  And we’re in the process of installing high definition video surveillance for enhanced security and liability protection at the center.  Of course, we’ve also addressed many more mundane but important issues, from addressing sidewalk trip hazards to replacing many HVAC units to putting vacant suites into leasable condition.

Results:  Within the first year we signed major leases for 11,000 and 8,000 sf respectively, in addition to several smaller leases. We have also renewed every tenant that has had a lease rollover, all at increased rents, and evicted one chronically delinquent tenant.  Premier and Broad Street have developed a strong working relationship that has benefited both parties and our investors, who have received all of their quarterly payments as scheduled. Equally important, the physical improvements and revenue from the new tenants will create significant value for the team and the investors.

Management: Premier manages this property.

Ownership: The principals of Premier have an ownership interest in this property.

Premier Village: 120 Apartment

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Multifamily | Dover, DE

Acquisition: Premier purchased this 4 building property at the entrance to Dover Air Force Base in early 2009. The seller was PNC Bank, on behalf of a trust. As a result of absentee ownership, the property had unusually high vacancy (22%) and had acquired a bad reputation because it was adjacent to a subsidized housing project of the same name. Fannie Mae provided financing for the acquisition. The acquisition price represented a cap rate of about 7.5% on trailing in place income. One attractive aspect of this property was a large number of very long term tenants.

Actions: In the short time since acquiring this property, Premier has moved the rental office from the back of the property to the front and created a new color scheme, logo, and installed new signage. These actions, along with renaming the property,  established a new and separate identity for this property. Premier also installed video security, new perimeter fencing, increased lighting, and held a community meeting to give current and new tenants a sense of security and stability. Finally, stepped up advertising and the creation of a property website and new flyers provided substantial new visibility for the “new” property.

Results: Occupancy has now stabilized at about 95%-98%.  The goal is to own this property for a long time and enjoy the cash flow.

Management: Premier has managed this property from the outset to the present, including all leasing, renovations and turnover work.

Ownership: The principals of Premier have significant ownership interest in this property.

Successful Apartment Turnaround

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Multi-family | Richmond

Acquisition:  In early 2014 Premier learned about this 216 unit apartment property in Richmond, Virginia, just down the street from its Brookhill Shopping Center.  While the property was in a lower income area, we were struck by the fact that it was bordered by two public schools on one side, and an upscale neighborhood across the street.  The property was built in the ’40s, but was constructed of attractive brick with slate roofs in a park like setting with 3 city blocks of road frontage.  The property was owned by FNMA, so while the price was extremely low, the acquisition was truly “as is, where is, with all faults” and had to be accomplished in a very short time frame.  Premier recognized this unique opportunity and moved quickly, financing the property through BB&T with assistance from Northmarq.

Actions:  At the time of acquisition the project suffered from 35%+ vacancy, serious delinquency,, and significant deferred maintenance.  Some of the improvements immediately undertaken included bringing wiring to code, installing laundry rooms, adding 43 video cameras for security, undertaking a roof refurbishment program, replacing over 1,000 windows, and establishing best practices in the management office.  On the marketing side, the property was renamed to Premier Gardens with new signage and a new website, not to mention a new advertising program.

Results:   While there were many challenges along the way, occupancy quickly began to climb, increasing over 15% in just the first 16 months.  People noticed.

In January of 2016 we received an unsolicited offer from a New York investor that we could not refuse!  Needless to say both Premier and our investors were very pleased to be able to sell this project at a substantial profit less than 2 years after first putting it under contract.

Management: Premier managed this property.


Elden Street: Retail and Office Building

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Retail-Office | Herndon, VA


Acquisition: Premier purchased this small retail and office property in 2001 at a favorable price. The 7,500 sf restaurant tenant had just gone bankrupt and shortly after acquisition the tech bubble burst and cost us another major tenant. The building had serious deferred maintenance and a bad reputation.

Actions: Premier installed a new roof, improved signage, replaced old concrete with a new stamped, colored asphalt product (great!), completely renovated all corridors and common areas, replaced several RTU’s, painted the building, removed trees obscuring retail tenants, negotiated a successful settlement with the restaurant lease guarantor and brought in another restaurant group. Premier also worked with a minor tenant to help them grow into more space, and brought in new tenants to replace those leaving or going out of business.

Results: Premier got the building 100% leased and sold it in 2007 at a profit of $2,000,000.

Management: Premier managed the property from start to finish.

Ownership: The principals of Premier had significant ownership interest in this property.