Saddlebrooke is selling off the final 35 lots that are planned for development at its 4,500-acre planned residential community at an absolute auction in September.
Developer Clyde Lorance said Saddlebrooke is not in foreclosure, but the auction is a reaction to lackluster sales in a down market.
“I know everyone is aware of what’s going on in the economy, especially in the real estate market, and sales this year have slowed substantially, and we decided to take a new approach,” Lorance said. “It’s something we’ve never done. It has generated a tremendous amount of interest. Right now, we anticipate having at least a couple hundred people at the auction.”
The auction will be held at Saddlebrooke on Sept. 17 at 2 p.m., he said, adding that signs on the property off of Highway 65 in south Christian County will direct attendees to the auction site. Buyers will need to put 25 percent down to secure their winning bids, Lorance said.
While Lorance said this was a difficult choice to make, he’s counting on bargain hunters – coming from eight to nine states that he knows of – to make the auction successful.
Most properties will be 3/4-acre lots, but five lots are in the 3- to 5-acre range. Lorance estimates that the lots could sell for half of their average prices. Historically, 3/4-acre lots sold for an average of $60,000 to $80,000. At Saddlebrooke's peak, Lorance said 22 lots sold five summers ago for an average price of $112,000.
“By sale day, 100 percent of the work, all of the water lines, all of the sewer lines will be finished. This is the last phase I’m developing, and we did save the best for last,” Lorance said. “I don’t know how long it would take to sell these in the normal business cycle of selling lots, but I knew if we had an absolute auction, the day the auction is over, they’d all be sold. And I was willing to take that chance. I gave it an awful lot of thought, but at the end of the day, I’m going to be satisfied with the outcome. I know the people who buy lots on that day are going to be happy because they’re going to be getting some bargains, I’m sure.”
Lorance said he has sold more than $5 million in land during the last 12 months, but he stressed that the land was not sold to developers, and that no future residential development was planned at Saddlebrooke. He said he still owns hundreds of acres of land.
To date, roughly 350 lots have been sold at the planned residential community, Lorance said, with 90 homes built and seven currently under construction.
Saddlebrooke launched in mid-2001, and the village of Saddlebrooke was incorporated in 2003, according to Springfield Business Journal archives. Lorance purchased roughly 2,200 acres nearly 20 years ago, prior to starting the development.[[In-content Ad]]