Garrett Building Trades House Sold
Article by Sue Carpenter | KPC News | November 1, 2018
GARRETT — About a dozen bidders registered for Tuesday’s auction of the Garrett High School Building Trades Home on South Second Street.
Also in the crowd were a former student who worked on the project that has taken several months to complete, school leaders, community members and contractors who helped with the total renovation of the 3,250-square-foot home, originally built in the 1960s.
Auctioneer Jim Littlejohn outlined the terms of the sale and the obligations of the parties involved before opening the no-reserve real estate auction.
Once the property situated on two acres drew bids higher than $220,000, the pool of potential buyers dwindled to only a few.
Littlejohn and assistants coaxed bidding until the gavel fell with a winning bid of $263,000, and the house was sold to Ben Coburn, who currently lives in the northeast Allen County area.
Coburn said he learned about the property on Zillow, an online real estate database company. He toured the home during an open house earlier this month — on a date that was his birthday — along with his family. His two daughters loved the upstairs bedroom with private bathroom and dormer windows. He looks forward to moving his family, including three dogs, to Garrett.
Garrett High School graduate Kimberly Maples watched the bidding from near the open staircase. She was a member of last year’s building trades class that began the renovation of the home, which involved tearing the interior walls down to the studs. Through the building trades program, she plans a career in construction management.
“This turned out great — I love how the project turned out,” Maples said following the sale.
She and classmates deconstructed the home, screw-by-screw, at the outset of the program in the fall of 2017. An open house was held at that time for the community to see the “before” stage of the project, with another in the spring to show progress made.
Cookies decorated with the building trades logo and photo were served Tuesday, along with thankyou notes to those who were involved in the project.
Chad Sutton led the building trades program until taking the directorship of the school’s Career Development Program earlier this year. He expressed pride for the work done on the home and the completion of the sale.
“I am glad we had so much interest in the home. It was awesome that so many people were able to see what the students are capable of doing,” Sutton said.
Students have built a home every year, but this was their first remodeling project.
“The quality never changes — these students want to a great job. It was great that so many people were able to see their work,” Sutton added.
The property was gifted to the school corporation by the late Lucy Brennan. The home and two acres were divided and sold separately, while plans are still in the works to develop a nine-lot subdivision, to be named Brennan Estates, with the remaining acreage that lies due south along South Second Street.
“The Brennan Family had a vision that the home and land would benefit the students. I am sure they do not realize how many people they have positively influenced by this amazing act of generosity to our community,” Sutton said.
“The largest building trades classes we have ever had since I have been here — over 40 different students — were able to work on this project over the last year-and-half. How many future careers did this help ignite?” he asked.
While construction was going on, every fifth-grader toured the home through the school’s Career Development Program.
“How many young minds were influenced? We are hopeful that Brennan Estates will be established so that future Career Development Construction Trades students can benefit for years to come. This project was so much about our community, what a great experience!” Sutton said.
The building trades class has begun a new build in Baltimore Place on the east side of Garrett under the guidance of instructor Tyler Emrick.