August 22, 2014

Council debates prices of lake-front property

Danedri Thompson
dthompson@gardnernews.com
Gardner Lake residents can purchase city-owned, lake-front property adjacent
to their homes for 56 cents per square foot.
Despite a recommendation from city staff to sell the land for $1.20 per square foot, city council members decided during a Jan. 7 council meeting on the lower price.
After years of discussion between property owners and the city, city officials
agreed to sell homeowners the land between their homes and the shoreline of the lake.
Last year, they agreed to a price of 56 cents per square feet. However, that agreement expired on Dec. 31, 2012. Using the advice of an appraiser, city staff suggested a new price of $1.20 per square foot.
The appraiser told staff that lake-front property on a buildable lot would be worth between $6 and $10 per square foot. However, since none of the land in question is on buildable lots and because the city policy stipulates that only adjacent property owners can acquire the city owned lake-front property,
the appraiser recommended a discounted price of between $1.20 and $2.50 per square foot.
Jim Melvin said staff ordered an appraisal of the property, because a city policy that governs the sale of its property required it. He said city staff did not know about an earlier appraisal that valued the land at 56 cents per square foot.
That appraisal was offered by Gardner Lake resident, Harold Quaintance.
Quaintance told the council that property owners at Gardner Lake planning to purchase the land adjacent to their lots were counting on the 56 cents per square foot price as they saved money and made plans.

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