July 16 auction offers
opportunities for individuals, investors and builders
PHA President &
CEO Kelvin Jeremiah, City Council President Darrell Clarke, and
auctioneer Max Spann answered questions about PHA's upcoming
auction of 200 scattered site properties in the 2100 block of North
Marston Street where four of the homes are located. Max Spann Real
Estate & Auction Co. has scheduled the auction for 10 a.m. on
July 16 at First District Plaza, 3801 Market Street in the
University City section of Philadelphia.
PHILADELPHIA - June 18, 2013 - The Philadelphia
Housing Authority is again teaming up with the nation's premier
real estate auction company to offer approximately 200 properties
for sale at a big one-day event. The announcement came this morning
on the 2100 block of N. Marston St., where four of the houses are
Max Spann Real Estate & Auction Co. has scheduled the
auction for 10 a.m. on July 16 at First District Plaza,
3801 Market Street in the University City section of
"The idea of an auction makes sense for the housing authority
for a number of reasons," said PHA President and CEO Kelvin
Jeremiah. "First, these properties have been vacant for many years
and unfortunately due to budgets cuts PHA does not have the
resources to rehab or maintain these properties. Therefore, by
selling the properties we will generate badly needed revenue to use
on other capital projects while allowing the private market to put
these houses back into service."
At PHA's first auction in the fall of 2011, Max Spann sold 341
PHA properties, netting approximately $6.4 million for the housing
authority. PHA is among more than 60 government entities nationwide
for which Max Spann has conducted auctions.
"We had tremendous excitement and fun in the room last time with
hundreds of bidders. We had families who were focused on a specific
property and we had investors who saw great opportunity to upgrade
houses and lots and market them to buyers searching for homes. This
is one of those situations in which everybody wins, including the
workers hired to rehab the properties. We are extremely pleased
that PHA was so happy with the earlier results that they called on
us again to conduct this auction," said company president Max Spann
The properties are scattered throughout the city but the
majority are located in North Philadelphia within close proximity
to Center City.
"I am grateful the Housing Authority is actively working
to dispense with longtime vacant properties. Too many of these
properties create significant challenges in neighborhoods
throughout the City as well as strains on our budget," said City
Council President Darrell Clarke. "We should all hope these
properties are purchased and put to good use - whether it's
providing quality, affordable housing for working families or
creating jobs and economic opportunities."
Lawrence McKnight of BMK Properties bought a row house in
Fishtown at the last PHA auction. His company completely rehabbed
the house and sold it to a family who now enjoys a beautiful home
in an up and coming community.
"The beauty of the PHA auction is that buyers get to transform
derelict homes into usable properties," McKnight said. "It helps
PHA because they no longer have to maintain a property they can't
use, but more importantly it also helps the community. The minute
we start rehabbing a property, neighbors start doing the same
thing. It brings out a sense of civic pride."
Another buyer at the 2011 auction was Garry Murray, who has been
buying, rehabbing and selling homes since 2003 with his company
Home Solutions Group. He bought two properties at the last
auction -one in North Philadelphia, which he improved and sold to a
family, and the second in Olney that he plans to convert into
student housing near La Salle University.
"The process is pretty easy," Murray said. "There were plenty of
properties to choose from. I was able to make some money. I
really like the idea that this time the properties will be
auctioned one at a time (rather than in groups as some were at the
last auction) so I can zero in on the ones I really want."
Max Spann will hold three auction informational sessions so that
prospective bidders can review the lists of properties, get
instructions on how the bidding process works, find out terms of
the sale and ask any other questions. The sessions will be held
from 12:00 to 3:00 p.m. at:
June 26 - Greater Grays Ferry Estates, 1800 S. 32nd
Street, Philadelphia, PA 19145
July 2 - Greater Grays Ferry Estates, 1800 S. 32nd Street,
Philadelphia, PA 19145
July 9 -Greater Grays Ferry Estates, 1800 S. 32nd Street,
Philadelphia, PA 19145
"This can be a very productive way to spend a day. The variety
of properties offered means there are homes for just about anyone,
even those who didn't think they could afford to buy a home. It is
important to keep in mind, however, that most of the properties
will need work. We recommend those interested attend an
informational session, learn how the auction works and drive by
addresses that interest them before they bid," said Max Spann
Executive Vice President Bob Dann. "The more informed our bidders
are the better their chances of achieving the results they want. It
also makes for a more exciting and fast-moving auction."
PHA, Pennsylvania's largest landlord serving approximately
80,000 residents, has seen its federal funding decrease over the
past year. The agency recently announced a program to help
community development organizations create housing for the same
vulnerable population served by PHA. Funds raised through the
auction will help fuel that initiative.
"These are very difficult times for housing authorities,
especially with the dramatic funding cuts caused by the federal
sequester. We have to be more efficient than ever in how we operate
and where we target our resources. It is reassuring to know that as
we raise money from the sale of these properties we are also
contributing to the improvement of the blocks where the houses are
located," said the PHA's Jeremiah.
Those interested can view an entire list
of the properties and a property information package, attend
the auction and bid. More information can also be found on Max Spann's Facebook
page and Twitter
feed or by calling 888-299-1438.
"If you buy a property at the auction you are making an
investment in yourself and in the city's future," said Dann.