WILLMAR — A house that was the focal point of a months-long campaign to declare it a public nuisance has been sold, according to All-Star Realty, the company representing the seller.
The house, located on the 900 block of Trott Avenue Southwest, faced scrutiny from some community and Willmar City Council members due to a significant number of arrests — mostly drug-related charges and probation violations — since 2013.
Some community members pushed for legal action against the homeowner which included declaring the home a public nuisance and the possible eviction of residents if the issues were not addressed.
The Kandiyohi County Attorney’s Office and the Willmar City Council declined to pursue any action, though the council did have City Attorney Robert Scott look into the matter.
According to the seller’s realtor, Lisa Mord, the house was initially listed at a lower price to encourage buyers, and the house had multiple offers before the house was officially sold Tuesday.
Mord said she could not give the name of the buyer, but she did say they were from the area, not a relative of the former owner and planned to fix the place up.
Mord said the previous owner has also left town.
“It’s nice to see that it’s over and that there’s a new owner for the property,” Willmar Mayor Marv Calvin said. “I think that’s good for the community and hopefully that will ease some of the concerns that were out there."
Calvin was a vocal opponent of the council’s process regarding the house but hopes the council treats these types of issues the same moving forward saying that the council has now set a policy and direction for the community.
“I hope the council is just consistent and not that they just treated this one differently because of the issues around it or the people that were asking it to be treated differently,” Calvin said.
While the city has the option to continue the abatement process up to a year after the last police call to the house, that is unlikely due to the home’s new ownership.
“I just hope the new tenants are given a fair shake by the homeowners in the neighborhood,” Calvin said.