Foreclosure sale covers county fund

August 13, 2010
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Kent County will hold its second tax-foreclosure auction at the end of next month, as the first sale held at the end of last month resulted in 54 percent of the available properties being sold. On July 30, the county offered 144 properties at the auction, and 78 were purchased.

“We’ve had sales where we’ve sold 90 percent-plus at the first sale,” said Kent County Treasurer Kenneth Parrish of the auction’s sales-track record. “But we generated quite a bit of revenue from the 78 that we sold.”

Parrish said the 78 sales were worth more than $1.1 million to his office.

“That is good. It’s not the highest number we’ve ever had, but it is one of the higher ones. We needed about $860,000 to make our delinquent revolving fund whole, and we actually generated almost $300,000 more than what we required to make the fund whole,” he said.

“We’ve always generated enough revenue to make the fund whole.”

Parrish said it wasn’t likely that any of the remaining foreclosed properties would go into the county’s new Land Bank Authority. He said he would take a closer look at the parcels over the next few weeks to determine whether any could be deposited. But he also said the authority didn’t have any money to meet the minimum-bid requirement to buy a property.

The authority was officially established earlier this year and it hasn’t been funded yet, which is normally done through grants from organizations that support the preservation of public lands.

“I would say it’s not likely that any would go into the bank. But I have not had a chance to study the list and see what remains and if there is a place for it in the land bank or not,” said Parrish.

Overall, 151 properties made the 2010 foreclosure list and seven were purchased by the parcels’ governing taxing units, which are given the right of first refusal on all tax-foreclosed parcels. After those purchases, the public was offered the remaining 144 properties; that number was 40 percent higher than the 102 up for sale last year.

“I was pleased,” said Parrish of the results from the first sale. “We always want to make the revolving fund whole, and going over that number, in terms of the dollar proceeds, is always a good thing. I was happy and it seemed like the buyers were happy with what they were able to buy.”

The second auction is set for Monday, Sept. 27. Registration will take place at 11 a.m. with the auction starting at noon. Like the first sale, the auction on the 66 remaining properties will be held in DeVos Place.

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