Sale of former Zebulon police station becoming auction

amoody@newsobserver.comNovember 21, 2013 

The Town of Zebulon has received six bids on its former police station located at 111 E. Vance St. since Sept. 1.

AARON MOODY — amoody@newsobserver.com Buy Photo

— The process of selling the town’s former police station has encountered four upset bids since October, when commissioners first accepted an offer of $35,001.

That bid was made by Brandon and Amanda LaRoque of Raleigh. Since then, the LaRoques, John Muter of Muter Construction and local attorney Andy Gay have virtually turned the process into an auction.

As of Wednesday, Muter had the high bid of $42,500. Muter placed that bid Nov. 18, the same day Gay put in at $42,100.

Potential buyers have 10 business days from the time of the last acceptance to enter a bid that’s 5 percent more than the current offer on the property. If the town approves a higher bid, the cycle restarts.

Gay made the first offer on the property, located at 111 E. Vance St., in September. His initial bid of $25,000 was $10,000 less than the town’s asking price and was rejected by the town board.

Before the LaRoques’ Oct. 3 bid was officially approved, Muter made his first offer of $37,000 on Oct. 21. The offers made by Gay and Muter on Nov. 18 came on the final day of the bid cycle initiated by the LaRoques’ Nov. 1 bid of $40,001.

Muter had, in September, entered a bid on another of the town’s surplus properties. The town board turned down his offer of $20,000 on the former commissioners’ chambers building located at 109 E. Horton St. The asking price is $85,000 for the property.

Muter was looking to relocate his company’s headquarters from the east side of Zebulon near the Franklin County line – where he said he has a poor Internet connection – to the former council chambers building. He indicated Wednesday his intentions remain the same for the former police station.

Town officials say the 4,846-square-foot building will require significant renovations, including asbestos removal.

“It’s in pretty bad shape,” Muter said Wednesday. “There’s asbestos abatement, lead abatement. The building pretty much needs to be gutted, but I’m in construction so I can do a pretty good amount of the work myself.”

Gay, in September, cited personal reasons for his interest in the former police station. He said he was “intrigued that no one else seemed interested” in the property at the time, despite its condition.

The new deadline to submit an upset bid is Dec. 2 at 5 p.m. If no new bids are received by that time, Muter’s current bid will go before Zebulon commissioners for approval.

Moody: 919-829-4806; Twitter: @easternwakenews

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