Cuyahoga County officials plan to put Larchmere’s long-vacant Sedlak building up for Sheriff’s Sale, possibly this summer.
If no one wants to start the bidding at $225,000 to pay off back taxes, this could finally clear the way for the county Land Bank to briefly take ownership of the property before turning it over to investor Michael Montlack for redevelopment.
The county Board of Revision moved the property into foreclosure June 13 after making a formal determination that any current and purported interest in buying the site had evaporated.
A lien holder on the property, located at Larchmere and 127th Street, last year had a “For Sale” sign placed on the building and claimed to have a buyer lined up with an asking price of $399,000, buying some time in the foreclosure process for another six months.
The Board of Revision granted a continuance, followed by three more from the county Prosecutor’s Office.
“It’s been a long slog with this property, but it looks like it is finally coming into what is hopefully a practical use,” said Ohio Fair Lending Coalition Director Chip Bromley.
Montlack has already been “vetted” by stakeholders in the process that included the Shaker Square Area Development Corp., Bromley noted.
As a local developer, Montlack appeared at an earlier meeting of the Shaker Square Alliance with the idea of rehabilitating the property.
Bromley also pointed out that once the property is turned over to the county Land Bank, the back taxes are “removed from the equation,” leaving money to fix a building that was in dire need of repairs over a year ago.
While the building continued to sit and deteriorate, Greg Staursky, SHAD’s Co-Director of Properties and Project Construction, noted that it at least allowed time to get the property released from bankruptcy proceedings in California.
Staursky said after the June 13 Board of Revision hearing it was unclear from the county Prosecutor’s Office whether there would be one or two Sheriff’s Sale offerings.
“But there is the thought that the property, in its condition, is not worth the amount of past due taxes so a buyer is unlikely.
“Although the original hope was that the Board of Revision would also directly transfer Sedlak to the Land Bank, this is an additional step towards that goal,” Staursky added.
At the June 12 meeting of the Shaker Square Alliance, SHAD Board President George Palda said “it’s a significant location on Larchmere that needs to be improved. It’s not enough to keep kicking the can down the road.”
Staursky also noted that the City of Cleveland has an active condemnation on at least some of the multiple buildings that make up the property.
Bromley earlier expressed some frustration that “there’s been seven more months of dancing around on this.”
But he pointed out after the ruling that the big difference with Sedlak is that it’s commercial property, as opposed to single-family homes and residential property, which is the overwhelming majority of what the Land Bank handles.
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