Stan Smith has been an active real estate community developer for the past twenty five years, concentrating in the Northwest Philadelphia neighborhoods of Mt. Airy, West Oak Lane, and Germantown. Stan is a socially responsible community developer; he has specialized in the commercial development of low-income neighborhoods with an emphasis on the nonprofit client. Offering customized office spaces, Stan knows, accepts, and works with the challenges of nonprofits’ funding requirements and unique real estate needs. Clients have included charter schools, partial treatment schools, day care centers, and housing. His best service to the client is the capability of managing all phases of real estate development: leasing, construction, and management. He is a one-stop shop, and all decisions are made quickly.
Initially focused in the residential market, Stan specialized in the first time homebuyer. During that time, he purchased, renovated, and sold more than 150 homes in Philadelphia. He eventually evolved into multi-family, garden style apartment buildings, ranging in size from 11 to 42 units. During this time he accumulated and managed over 200 units. More recently, Stan has moved forward to focus on the development, renovation, construction, and management of more than 250,000 square feet of professional office and retail space throughout Philadelphia.
All of his real estate development has been with local conventional banking relationships, with the emphasis on being local and community focused. Smith Houston Inc. is his operating company that offers dependable, reliable and superior real estate management.
His current project, the Flying Horse Center at 5534 Pulaski Avenue in Philadelphia’s Germantown neighborhood was a parking garage built in 1926 that has been converted into a 54,000 square foot premier, multi use building. This property has been recognized as a leading example of the adaptive re-use of an industrial building in Philadelphia. It highlights the important role of design in making new and positive assets in urban neighborhoods, and combines an homage to the industrial past with a vision for a forward thinking, new industrial and urban renaissance.
The Flying Horse Center is currently in the final renovation phase of a 7,000 square foot development of executive office space (www.FHC-Suites.com ). The Center also contains the Pegasus Room (www.pegasusroom.net), a 7,000 square foot banquet hall space that Stan also operates and manages. All renovations and or construction have been performed by his MBE and minority owned company, Smith Houston Inc. (www.smithhouston.com).
Stan is also well known for his expertise in sheriff sale purchases and the creation of added value through investment in distressed real estate. Stan has shared his knowledge of the sheriff sale process by leading several sheriff sale seminars for real estate educational groups. Along with Ken Weinstein, Stan has been invited to speak annually to a group of 35 NFL players at Wharton’s Sports Business Initiative at the University of Pennsylvania about investing in real estate.
Born and raised in Puerto Rico, Stan finished high school at Chestnut Hill Academy in Philadelphia. He received a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Massachusetts, and continued his education at Temple University’s Real Estate Institute. Stan recognizes the importance of community development through responsible real estate investment and has made this an important goal for his company. Throughout his real estate career, Stan’s focus has been the same: creating value, while strengthening blighted neighborhoods.
“I believe I can use real estate as a vehicle to make a difference in low-income neighborhoods. This is the quickest way to make an impact”, said Smith. “My business is a long-term commitment that has been instilled by my family legacy in this region and I plan to continue it with my sons. My mission is to make this business my legacy to both my family and to the community. I want to make a difference here in Germantown as long as I can.”
Stan serves as a Board member of Germantown United CDC, and as a committee member of the Germantown Special Services District.