Park City sells Empire Pass condo for $725,000, turning a profit
City Hall has sold a condominium in Empire Pass, opting to dispose of the unit rather than holding it on a long-term basis, in a move that is designed to boost the municipal government’s broader housing efforts.
The Park City Council at a recent meeting voted to approve a contract to sell the Ironwood unit to a private individual named David Berg. The sale price was $725,000. It is a two-bedroom, one-bathroom unit in a building at 8789 Marsac Ave., a short walk to the Northside Express lift at Deer Valley Resort. The deal closed on Friday, according to City Hall.
Heinrich Deters, who manages real estate for the municipal government, said Berg submitted an unspecified offer for the unit. City Hall responded to the number with a counteroffer of $800,000, leading to the negotiations that resulted in the $725,000 sale price. Officials initially listed the unit at $1 million but were unable to find a buyer at the full amount.
City Hall acquired the unit in 2018 for $250,000 and was required to pay another $30,000 in an assessment that included work on the building’s roof as well as homeowners association dues. The municipal government turned a profit of $445,000, minus closing costs, on the deal after taking into account the assessment and homeowners association dues. The funds will be put into City Hall’s overall housing efforts.
The Ironwood developers built the unit as part of the workforce or otherwise affordable housing required by City Hall. The municipal government demands larger developers provide a certain number of units of the housing as part of overall approvals in an effort to ensure there are places to live for the staffers generated by a project.
City Hall said the assessment for the roof work in combination with the homeowners association dues impacted the affordability of the unit for a member of the workforce. The owner of the unit intended to leave and City Hall held a right of first refusal, acquiring the place using the right. The location, distant from other neighborhoods and services, was deemed not to be ideal for a workforce or otherwise restricted unit. Officials preferred to sell the unit and put the revenues from a sale into the broader municipal housing program. A restriction that was attached to the deed requiring the unit remain part of the workforce or otherwise affordable stock was removed as City Hall prepared to sell the unit.
“We swapped one up there for one down here,” Deters said, describing that the revenues will be put into a project that is closer to Park City neighborhoods.
A City Hall report drafted in anticipation of the recent meeting indicated municipal staffers received a series of inquiries and showed the unit to several possible buyers. The report, though, says the 939-square-foot size, small for a place in Empire Pass, and the lack of a garage “were considerable factors in its marketability.” Deters added that the lack of a garage “definitely impacted the value.”
Brigid Flint, the real estate agent who represented the buyer, said Berg bought the place to use as a vacation property rather than a full-time residence. He lives outside of Utah, she said. Flint said the $725,000 is “one of a kind for the price point in the neighborhood.”
“There’s no other comparables, really,” Flint said, pointing to the real estate prices in Empire Pass, which typically climb into the millions of dollars. “He was looking for an affordable place in Empire Pass.
He loves the skiing at Deer Valley,” she said, calling the unit in Ironwood a “little ski pad.”
Park City is pursuing an aggressive housing program designed to add 800 units of restricted housing deemed to be affordable or attainable by 2026. The monies raised through the sale of the unit in Ironwood would represent just a portion of the budget of any individual City Hall project as officials work toward that goal, but the availability of the funds are notable nonetheless as a result of the unique history of the unit.
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