County to consider buyer for old building

FRONT ROYAL – Warren County might have a buyer for its old Department of Social Services building.

A real estate holding firm for CBM Mortgage made an offer to purchase the property at 912 Warren Ave. from the county. The Board of Supervisors plans to hold the required public hearing on the potential sale March 15. Supervisors agreed Tuesday to schedule the hearing. Selling property requires a super-majority of the board, or four members, to vote in favor of the action.

The county listed the property for sale in August in anticipation of the completion of the Health and Human Services Complex – the renovated 15th Street school that now houses the Department of Social Services and other agencies. County Administrator Doug Stanley said Tuesday that some other entities toured the property but the county received no other official offers.

The most recent reassessment valued the aging, 8,446-square foot building and the 0.48-acre parcel at $797,000. The county bought the property for $560,000 in 1998.

Hometown Front Royal LLC negotiated a price with the county and has tendered a contract to buy the property for $685,000. The county would net approximately $630,000 after paying the broker’s fees and closing costs not to exceed $55,000. The buyer would get the property for about $112,000 below the assessed value.

The contract proposes a $10,000 deposit and a 30-day study period for due diligence as well as an April 22 closing date.

CBM Mortgage, at 112 E. 6th St., plans to renovate the property and serve as its loan origination office for Warren County and Front Royal, the firm’s Chief Executive Officer Cory Michael said in a news release issued Monday. CBM owns Hometown Front Royal and uses the firm to buy its real estate.

The company plans to house its 23 employees in the new location to enable to growth of the firm, the release states. The county and town can also start collecting taxes on the property at a higher assessment than the property currently has, the release notes.

CBM Mortgage also operates branches in Strasburg, Winchester and Warrenton.

Contact staff writer Alex Bridges at 540-465-5137 ext. 125, or abridges@nvdaily.com