Friends buy and renovate abandoned high school into stunning apartments for $100K

Investing in an abandoned school can prove to be an exceptional opportunity for financial gain, as demonstrated by the experience of three friends and real estate professionals. Upon discovering an abandoned high school in Homestead, Pennsylvania, Adam Colucci, Jesse Wig, and Dan Spanovich seized the chance to purchase the property, pooling their resources for its renovation.

The trio acquired the high school building for $100,000 and invested approximately $3.3 million in transforming it into a remarkable 31-unit apartment complex, complete with an array of impressive amenities.

Friends buy and renovate abandoned high school into stunning apartments for $100K

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Throughout the project, the three friends collaborated closely. Adam Colucci, leveraging his design expertise, conceptualized the layouts of the apartment units and worked in conjunction with the National Park Service to preserve and restore the building’s historical significance.

By doing so, they were able to secure a historical tax credit. In their efforts to maintain the building’s heritage, they preserved elements such as the 12-foot-high ceilings, original porcelain crown moldings, and terrazzo floors, among other features. Jesse Wig, on the other hand, focused on the overall design, finishes, and the creation of common spaces.

Friends buy and renovate abandoned high school into stunning apartments for $100K

(Youtube screenshot)

One notable area they transformed was the auditorium, which they converted into a shared study and recreation area while carefully preserving its original structure and flooring. Additionally, they repurposed the school’s gymnasium, transforming it into a fully equipped fitness center with weights and exercise equipment on one half, while retaining the other half as an original basketball court and ring.

The resulting apartment complex comprises 27 one-bedroom units and four two-bedroom units. In a captivating video released by CNBC Make It, viewers are treated to a virtual tour of the meticulously renovated interior.

Friends buy and renovate abandoned high school into stunning apartments for $100K

(Youtube screenshot)

Jesse Wig guides viewers through one of the units, providing an instant impression of the seamless flow and spaciousness within the room. Upon entering the L-shaped kitchen, one is greeted by a pristine quartz countertop, complemented by white subway tiles and open shelving. Moving further into the space, the kitchen naturally transitions into a generously proportioned living room.

Friends buy and renovate abandoned high school into stunning apartments for $100K

(Youtube screenshot)

This area, which was once a classroom, retains the original blackboard as a design feature, lending a unique accent to the room. The high ceilings and abundant windows create an illusion of even greater size, while an abundance of natural light floods the bedroom, making it an inviting and pleasant space.

Friends buy and renovate abandoned high school into stunning apartments for $100K

(Youtube screenshot)

In a conscious effort to maximize natural illumination, the team retained all the windows, minimizing the need for artificial lighting. Additionally, they ensured ample closet space, including a walk-in closet equipped with a washer and dryer. The bathroom, meticulously designed, boasts a round mirror, single-bar lighting, and dark hexagon floor tiles, exuding an impeccable aesthetic.

Friends buy and renovate abandoned high school into stunning apartments for $100K

(Youtube screenshot)

As the project and construction manager, Dan Spanovich had a comprehensive understanding of the renovation costs. Although the team had initially set a $2 million construction budget, they eventually exceeded it.

To bridge the financial gap, each member contributed from their own pockets based on their proportional shares in the project. Likewise, any profits generated from the Bowtie building now go toward funding their next endeavor, the Schwab School, located just across the street.

Friends buy and renovate abandoned high school into stunning apartments for $100K

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The Schwab School was acquired for $90,000, with a mortgage of $3.25 million. However, due to its more dilapidated state compared to the Bowtie, the team anticipated that the renovation costs would surpass the initial projections. Their plan entails creating 31 one-bedroom units, with construction expected to be completed in July.

Friends buy and renovate abandoned high school into stunning apartments for $100K

(Youtube screenshot)

In summary, the decision to invest in an abandoned school has proven to be a lucrative opportunity for these three friends turned real estate professionals. Through their shared vision, careful planning, and meticulous execution, they transformed a vacant and neglected structure into a vibrant and comfortable living space, while also preserving its historical significance.

By leveraging their expertise, these entrepreneurs have unlocked the potential of abandoned properties, opening doors to financial success and future endeavors in the realm of real estate.

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