Art Falcone

Boca Raton-based Encore Capital Management is trying to raise $400 million for a new private equity fund to buy land and build homes, Bloomberg reported.

Encore’s plan is unusual because private equity firms usually don’t build homes, though many bought and rented thousands of homes after the residential real estate market collapsed in the late 2000s.

Citing unidentified sources familiar with the plan, Bloomberg reported that Encore is trying to raise funds from institutional investors to build homes that are affordable for elderly and entry-level buyers.

Oscar Vasquez, chief operating officer of Encore, declined to comment on the new home-building fund.

Art Falcone, who sold a privately held Florida home builder called Transeastern Properties Inc. in 2005, founded Encore nearly 10 years ago together with Tony Avila, former head of real estate investment banking at JMP Securities LLC.

Encore recently hired Jeff Gardner, a former executive of Invesco Ltd. and Carlyle Group LP, to open a New York office and to help the firm raise capital. [Bloomberg]Mike Seemuth