Landmark properties in Tryon, Landrum to sell at auction July 19

Published 1:50 pm Monday, July 7, 2008

Several landmark properties in Landrum and Tryon, including the three former Tryon Federal Bank buildings, are set to sell at auction later this month.

Charlotte-based builder/developer McCray Smith has commissioned the auction sale of 13 properties, including 10 from the local area, from his principal holding company, Cray, Inc.

The properties, located in Polk, Spartanburg and Greenville counties, include well-known and high-profile properties that may offer new economic opportunities for the area under new ownership.

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The auction process begins on Thursday, July 17 with the on-site sale of a 25.2-acre farm on North Tigerville Road in Greenville County between the Cliffs of Glassy and North Greenville University. The property sells on site at 5:31 p.m. and sells absolute.

On the following Saturday, July 19, 12 properties will sell from one location at 105 W. Rutherford St. in Landrum at 10:01 a.m.

Included in the Saturday auction event are the three buildings that were formerly the home of Tryon Federal Bank. Smith originally purchased the &dquo;Tryon Federal buildings&dquo; directly across South Trade Street from Morris the Horse, with the idea of redeveloping the property as a multi-use facility. Ideas considered included retail shops, offices, a restaurant and a jazz club in the basement. On the second floor level, apartments or condos were planned. The &dquo;Tryon Federal Bank buildings&dquo; are actually three separate buildings and will be sold as three individual buildings or as a whole.

The auction on July 19 also includes the following (see page 8 for a complete listing): a commercial tract of 15 acres on Pea Ridge Road and Hwy. 74 in Polk County; a 1,600-square-foot recently remodeled building in downtown Landrum; a 22.96-acre farm on Hogback Mountain Road just out of Landrum; a Landrum estate property of 4.88 acres with a 3,500-square-foot &dquo;farm house,&dquo; and a 640-square-foot guest house; a tract of 5.7 acres just out of Landrum on Hwy. 14 with two houses; three off-water lots near Lake Lanier; two building lots in the City of Landrum, a 1.5-acre single or multi-family site in Tryon; a commercial corner at Hwy. 14 and N. Randolph Street in Landrum; a 21,855-square foot metal building with 136 climate controlled storage units, just off I-26 on John Dodd Road in Spartanburg, and a 2.10-acre commercial tract on I-85 in Spartanburg.

Known as a designer of new homes and historic renovations, Smith has built or renovated more than 400 homes, 50 commercial buildings and has designed more than 1,000 new homes and renovations.

Smith provided the following comments about the auction: &dquo;I bought the Tryon Federal buildings because of their historic significance, outstanding location and potential to do something special for Tryon and Western North Carolina community. I am enamored with the hospitality and wonderful atmosphere of Landrum and Tryon and the beauty of surrounding properties. It is with mixed emotions that our company has elected to market a portion of our Upstate South Carolina/Western North Carolina inventory. Our current strategic plan refocuses the company&squo;s creative energy on its staple, core business of developing larger tracts of land in Charlotte, the Western Carolinas and on the South Carolina coast. We continue to have other holdings in the Western Carolinas and our strategic plan going forward includes a continued presence and an active role in those markets.&dquo;

The Hogback Mountain Road farm, the Landrum estate property, the 5.67 acres with two houses on Hwy. 14, the three off-water lots near lake Lanier, the two buildings lots on North Laurel Court, the 1.5-acre Grady Avenue site and the commercial corner on Hwy. 14 at North Randolph Street all sell absolute, without reserve or minimum and to the high bid.

Rachel Smith, sale executive and senior vice-president of Carolina Auction Team, Inc., said: &dquo;We fully expect to sell every property offered in this auction event. It is very likely that virtually all the properties will be absolute by sale day or will be converted to absolute status during the auction event.&dquo;

The other properties, including the Tryon Federal Bank buildings, will be shown to prospective bidders by auction company representatives on Thurday, July 10 from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. All of the other properties in the sale will be open and agents will be on site on Sunday, July 13 from 2 to 4 p.m. All of the properties will be shown anytime by appointment. Area real estate brokers may participate in the auction process by referring buyers to the auction company.

The Tryon Federal Bank buildings were listed by Tryon realtor Allan Pruette of Century 21, Tryon Real Estate. Pruitt referred the buildings to Rachel Smith at Carolina Auction Team, to design an auction marketing plan for the buildings. Pruette has worked together with Carolina Auction, Inc. on several other occasions, going back to the early 1980s. In commenting on the transaction, Pruette said: &dquo;We all know that the Tryon Federal Bank buildings have major significance to our downtown community. We see this auction as a catalyst to create new business for our community, as these buildings are sold at auction.&dquo;

The seller has authorized an &dquo;opening bid incentive&dquo; for the Tryon Federal Bank buildings. Under this plan, if a registered bidder places an opening bid on the buildings which is at least 8 percent of the final bid and purchases and closes on the buildings, then the buyer will receive a credit of 1 percent of his or her opening bid on the purchase of the bank buildings.

This auction event is being conducted by Spartanburg-based Carolina Auction Team, Inc. The firm has sold thousands of properties at auction throughout the country, including some in the local area.