In 1993 Barbara Gaffen was introduced to her partner Michael Zaransky by his wife, and together they founded Prime Property Investors, Ltd. After 20 years in CRE, great opportunity for growth, as well as appreciation in values, and growing PPI is why Gaffen has remained in the industry.
“We first started with relatively passive investments in triple net leased properties,” said Gaffen, Co-CEO of Prime Property Investors, Ltd. “Proven by our now over $230 million national portfolio of multifamily properties. Every day, and every new deal, is different and creates opportunities for creativity in problem solving, and opportunity for investment growth.”
So what sets PPI a part from other firms? Gaffen said they’re nimble and react quickly. “We close all deals on time, as agreed, without cumbersome contingencies and we NEVER change the deal or the terms. We always, always, always, close as agreed without exception.”
“We’ve recently had success in the Houston market,” Gaffen continued. “Auburn Lakes and Fountain Lakes, as well as successful value add and sale of Deer Valley for a $6.7 million profit in two years.”
Her most memorable deal is Alexan Auburn Lakes, “The property is so magnificent and it was our first step out into ground up new construction development, rather than purchasing a stabilized asset.”
Gaffen’s father has been one of her biggest mentors, teaching her how to treat people and cultivate relationships.
“He taught me the value of personal relationships, and that your integrity and reputation counts,” she said. “Secondly, my partner Michael mentored me in applying my legal and business knowledge to real estate investment.”
The biggest lesson Gaffen has learned working in CRE is, “The world changes. Investors and companies must adapt as markets and assets change.”
When Gaffen isn’t working she enjoys spending time with her new granddaughter, family, and friends, traveling & shopping.
One thing she’d like to do, that she hasn’t already? “There are still many places to travel to that are on my list of places to get to.”
What’s happening in Chicago right now that makes her hopeful? “Young people still want to come to the City and live here.”
An interesting fact about Gaffen, “I love purses and shoes, and can be caught doing online shopping in the middle of a conference call!”
Gaffen is not a huge movie fan but absolutely LOVES concerts! “Most recently my favorites are country rock as well as Carrie Underwood, John Legend, and Coldplay,” she said. “There are so many I love, I could go on and on. In the summer we are sponsors at Ravinia and I probably go to about 20 concerts.”