As real estate deals go, this was a sweet one for the purchaser.

Wigwamen, an aboriginal housing organization, has bought 20 single-family homes from Toronto Community Housing in a deal recently approved by city council.

Instead of purchasing the properties outright — they’re estimated to be worth nearly $9 million — Wigwamen will have to pay only about $400,000 in outstanding mortgages.

In late 2008, these properties and nearly 600 other single-family homes owned by the city’s community housing agency were at the centre of controversy.

Many are in established neighbourhoods, including the upper Beach, and Broadview-Danforth, their values have risen to close to $500,000 or more each.

That fact raised the ire of a few Toronto councillors, who argued that some of the properties should be sold and the money put toward rent subsidies.