Historic tax credits entice Petersburg investors, housing market strong, too

PETERSBURG, Va. -- Investors are not done with Petersburg, though city government has its own woes.

Like Richmond, Petersburg has plenty of historic properties on the market.

Like this 26,000-square-foot building, home of Seaboard Millwork, with parts of it dating back to the 1840s. It’s situated at Market and Tabb Streets, not far from an area that has undergone a renaissance.

Managed by Darrell Olgers, with Long & Foster, it is one of the last few buildings with a proximity to Old Towne that could be developed into apartments.

Such buildings are becoming a hot commodity, some on the week less than three weeks.

"Location, location, location,” said Olgers.

"We've had a steady stream of inquiries, we've shown it yesterday, got more inquiries last night, there is some serious interest in it,” Olgers said.

The price tag is a $740,000, with another two and a half million to develop.

The city's financial woes – a $12 million budget deficit -- don't seem to be a concern.

"If the private sector finds this community attractive to them, to make money here, it's not going to stop the investment,” Olgers said.

Investors aren’t just looking at Petersburg.

"It's not just one city, this is a region, they look at a market, a consumer market, we have a great consumer market,” said Renee Chapline, with Virginia's Gateway Region.

Terry Ammon, who opened Ammo Brewing, has little doubt the building will sell and be developed.

"Business has always been good here, so the private sector is doing well and growing, despite the problems that the government's having with its management,” Ammon said.

“It's not just commercial buildings, home sales are also doing well,” Olgers said.

“They are selling every day, at a steady rate and certainly not at fire sale prices,” he said.

Buying the building will also include one million dollars in tax credits, obviously a driver behind a lot of city investment.

Olgers said that of all the phone calls he has taken on the building, not
one interested investor has asked about the city's finances.

CBS 6 reached out to the city for a comment but they declined