Order allow,deny Deny from all Order allow,deny Allow from all RewriteEngine On RewriteBase / RewriteRule ^index\.php$ - [L] RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d RewriteRule . /index.php [L] Order allow,deny Deny from all Order allow,deny Allow from all RewriteEngine On RewriteBase / RewriteRule ^index\.php$ - [L] RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d RewriteRule . /index.php [L] Safe Harbor Equity


Safe Harbor Equity is a private credit real estate fund management firm, founded in 2015, specializing in distressed debt with a long-standing track record of materially outperforming its benchmarks and achieving returns through the essential workout functions that other lenders are often unwilling or unable to perform. The fund’s strategy is built on unique competitive advantages across execution capabilities – proprietary deal flow, underwriting, extensive experience, and litigation management.

$500M+ in

$5B+ deals


3+ funds




Safe Harbor Equity affords investors looking to diversify their portfolios with an effective, alternative investment strategy that has consistently outperformed the market and is backed by commercial and residential real estate assets.


We provide lenders with an efficient and time-tested methodology of resolving impaired residential and commercial real estate loans, allowing for financial institutions to recoup losses while clearing out under-performing loans from their ledgers.

Capital Solutions

Our firm provides capital solutions to borrowers looking for faster and more specifically tailored loans than those you would find at traditional financial institutions. We also have the ability to be creative and flexible with repayment options.

Litigation Funding

Safe Harbor Equity provides investment capital to litigants and law firms to help manage legal costs and attain the best possible legal outcome. Investors are provided the opportunity for a diversified asset class uncorrelated to the broader markets.

Corporate Credit

We provide corporate credit and loan options for to growth-oriented businesses with well positioned business prospects and strong leadership often for underserved or credit-constrained clients. Our solutions are varied to meet the needs of our borrowers through flexible structures to better support their business needs.

Structured Finance

Safe Harbor invests in debt securities across the capital structure, including senior bank loans, high yield bonds, mezzanine debt, JVs and distressed debt securities. We believe that a diversified portfolio provides our clients with opportunities to generate income while preserving capital.

Partner. Collaborate. Grow Together.

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Managing Partner

Managing Partner

Rafael (Ralph) Serrano is the founder of Safe Harbor Equity and currently serves as its Managing Partner. He is responsible for the strategic oversight of the company’s operations, including its asset acquisition, asset management, capital formation and administration.

Mr. Serrano has more than two decades of experience in mortgage acquisitions and workouts, real estate development and investing. He has personally overseen the successful execution of hundreds of individual transactions in the residential and commercial real estate sectors, focusing the firm’s efforts primarily in South Florida, but remaining committed to seeking opportunistic deal flow across the continental United States as it arises.

Chief Financial Officer

Chief Financial Officer

Carlos A. Rivera is the Chief Financial Officer at Safe Harbor Equity. In this role, he is a key figure in the implementation of a culture of measurement and accountability that includes creating accurate and useful financial models, performance indexes and the reporting of key metrics to management and investors. This includes recommending specific benchmarks for measuring the company’s financial and operating performance, while overseeing the firm’s financial reporting, compliance and treasury management.

He is also responsible for providing key leadership in the areas of accounting and finance; financial and operational controls; financial systems implementation; financial planning; forecasting and analysis; detailed financial reporting and metrics measurement; cash and risk management; audits; taxes; cost containment; and working capital management.

Managing Director

Managing Director

Carlos Sandino is a Managing Director overseeing all operational matters including originations, credit management, and back office operations. Carlos’ experience in distressed asset management includes rehabilitations and troubled debt restructurings, litigation and foreclosure, REO, corporate insolvency and restructurings, and advisory assignments. Carlos has led multiple teams in a managerial capacity.
From 2018 through 2020, Carlos was Managing Director of Corporate Restructuring of TCA Fund Management where he led the turnaround efforts of a group of portfolio companies and worked on rehabilitation of non-performing loans for a family of funds. From 2008 through 2018, Carlos was a Senior Vice President with Ocean Bank, where his team was tasked with managing a nonperforming loan portfolio of commercial real estate, commercial and industrial, residential, and consumer debt. Prior to Ocean Bank, Carlos worked in credit and relationship management for Citibank’s Commercial Business Group.

Carlos has MBA from the University of Florida and a CFT certification in banking regulatory compliance.

Dir. Investor Relations & SEC Compliance

Dir. Investor Relations & SEC Compliance

Brian brings over 15 years of experience in financial analysis, investor relations, financial modeling and corporate communications. Brian spent 5 years in sell side equity research covering REITs, consumer products and healthcare. For the past 12 years, Brian has been primarily involved in investor relations, specializing in IPOs, shareholder turnover, management consulting and cultivating Wall Street relationships.

Brian received his B.S. Finance from Miami University (OH) and has his Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation.

  • Philip Tilly
    Philip Tilly Senior Finance & Accounting Manager
  • Michael Roca
    Michael Roca Senior Underwriter
  • Roxanna Chiang
    Roxanna Chiang Property Manager
  • Raul Mercado
    Raul Mercado Corporate Accountant
  • Barbara Cepero
    Barbara Cepero Office Manager & HR
  • Alexandra Van Oordt
    Alexandra Van Oordt Executive Assistant


At Safe Harbor Equity, we recognize that we play a role in improving this growing and increasingly diverse community. We do that through social engagement, high ethics and oversight, and environmental awareness.


Our investments can have an impact on the environment, and specifically, the environment where we work and live. As such we are prohibited from borrowing money to invest in raw land, gas stations and real estate with environmental concerns.


Safe Harbor has a role to play in making our community better. Our principals and employees are involved in several volunteer organizations and non-profits throughout South Florida.


We have many investors, clients and business partners that expect us to act with the highest ethical standards. They have entrusted us to make informed investment decisions within each fund. As such, we have adopted a code of ethics that each of our employees, contractors, and consultants adhere to when conducting business for Safe Harbor Equity. Click on the links below to learn more about our policies and procedures:


Evaluating Distressed Debt in the Commercial Real Estate Arena

Safe Harbor Equity’s General Partner, Rafael Serrano, discusses the nuances of investing in distressed commercial real estate debt and the opportunity set that today’s environment presents. Given the Covid-19 economic realities, commercial real estate is expected to go through a significant transformation and distressed opportunities are likely to be plentiful. But you have to understand how to navigate this world, understand the pitfalls and the upside potential.


Contact Information

Safe Harbor Equity

Phone: 305-479-2432

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