SANFORD – Longtime Sanford and Springvale landlord George Sleeper has sold 108 apartment units in one of the largest transfers of real estate in the city’s recent past.

The units, which are located in about 20 properties, have been sold to a company registered in Maine with a New York connection, White Bark Properties LLC. The deal closed Nov. 5.

Matthew Goldfine, manager of White Bark Properties, said the company intends to leave the Sanford and Springvale properties largely as they are while each is evaluated and a plan developed, as needed.

“There is an intent to assure that the rental units are in compliance with governmental codes,” said Goldfine. “We are working on regularly inspecting the units for compliance and put an action plan in place to assure compliance. Furthermore, there will be some minor upgrades in the finishes of the rental units giving them more personality and greater appeal. Our intent is to have a positive impact on the local area and provide good quality, safe and reasonably priced rentals for the citizens of the area.”

The properties are largely multi-unit with some mixed commercial and residential and are spread throughout the Sanford and Springvale community, from eight buildings on Riverbank Court to two on Main Street, two on Island Avenue, three on Winter Street and the remainder on State, Mousam, River, Church and Mill streets.

At a city council meeting earlier this week, City Manager Steve Buck said the properties had been sold for $4 million.

“The new owner expresses an understanding of Sanford’s requirements and has the financial capacity to address any deficiencies within said units,” said Buck.

White Bark Properties registered in Maine on Oct. 22 and lists a Brooklyn, New York, address shared by Excel Builders & Renovators Inc., but is not a subsidiary, said Goldfine. Excel Builders & Renovators has a long history of renovation and building projects for the U.S. General Services Administration, and in the private sector, has renovated of a number of brownstones in Brooklyn and Manhattan.

Sleeper, who also owns the family business Sleepers Market on Lebanon Street in Sanford, and markets in Limerick, Limington and Biddeford, has been a landlord for 35 years.

“I’m getting close to retirement and it is a good economy in which to sell,” said Sleeper of his decision to sell the rental properties.

He also said he was among the landlords who did not favor Sanford’s recent adoption of a rental housing ordinance, feeling there was enough oversight.

Sleeper said his tenants have been made aware of the sale.

Tammy Wells can be contacted at 780-9016 or [email protected]

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