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Gladstone extends, modifies pact with housing contractor

April 14, 2009
By Audrey LaFave

GLADSTONE - The Gladstone City Commission Monday night voted to extend an agreement with a local housing contractor for two years that has led to construction of speculation homes in the city.

Joel Pouliot of Craftsman Quality Builders, Gladstone, requested Monday the city modify the terms of the four-lot original agreement. He asked the city allow his non-refundable $4,000 total deposit on two lots be used as the closing cost payment of a third lot when the home he built on it sells. The city decided instead to extend Pouliot's original three-year agreement by two years, which he said was a good compromise.

Pouliot entered into an agreement with the city in May 2006 with regard to the city-owned property of Lake Bluff Subdivision No. 15, lots 471, 472, 482 and 470. The residential home construction company said at the time it wanted to build homes on speculation (commonly called "spec-homes") and offer them to the general public in the area along Tipperary Road in Gladstone.

The agreement specified the city would retain ownership of the lots being developed until it received payment in full of $14,500 for each of three lots and $12,000 for a fourth. Pouliot would pay property taxes on land and improvements while constructing the four spec-homes. The agreement also included a non-refundable deposit of $2,000 and gave Pouliot three years to build the homes and sell them.

Pouliot's requested Monday night the commission amend this agreement due to the downturn in the economy and specifically the construction industry and the unlikelihood of the purchase of a spec-home. His proposal was in essence that the deposit of $4,000 be applied to the balance due on lot 482 in the Lake Bluff Subdivision No. 15.

"I have an agreement with the city of Gladstone regarding lots in the city," said Pouliot in a letter to the commission, with additional attached documentation of the agreement. "With the downward turn of the economy I would like this agreement for the two remaining vacant lots to be voided."

The commission, while reluctant to amend what was called a "non-refundable deposit" in the original contract, was happy to extend the

length of the agreement, according to City Manager Mike Wiesner.

"Certainly your intent was to have homes built on those lots, and since there is still a willingness to build on those lots I think a two-year extension is in order," said Wiesner.

Two homes have been built on two of the four lots and one has been sold. Another is almost complete and Pouliot said he has good interest in that home.

"We've done some wonderful things up there ... on Tipperary since we broke ground," he said.

Pouliot said when he's in a position to start another house he would be definitely be interested in building on the remaining property, which he called "premium lots."

"I appreciate the good working relationship I have with the city of Gladstone and I would like to continue on this positive note for future endeavors," said Pouliot.

According to discussion Monday night, Lake Bluff Subdivision No. 15 along Tipperary Road has in excess of 35 lots and homes for sale by several real estate companies and agents as well as individuals, construction companies and private sellers.



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