Buyers and neighbors of historic homes frustrated by slow pace of sales

RALEIGH–The state has found buyers for a dozen old and historic homes in downtown Raleigh since last fall, but none of the houses has actually changed hands yet.

Buyers such as Matthew Brown, whose $536,000 offer on a house on North Person Street was accepted in November, are frustrated by the time it’s taking to complete the sales. So are others in the neighborhood who are anxious about the continued deterioration of the empty homes, most of which are in the Blount Street Historic District between Oakwood and the State Government Complex.

“The state acts when it wants to act. Evidently this is not an urgent matter to them,” said Sandra Scherer, president of the Society for the Preservation of Historic Oakwood. “Every day those houses fall into greater and greater disrepair.”

Myrick Howard, president of Preservation North Carolina, an advocacy group that has long urged the state to sell the houses to people who will restore them, notes that the state accepted offers on all but one of the houses six to eight months ago.

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(News & Observer, 7/20/2016)