MOUNT VERNON — Following a public hearing Wednesday, the city’s Municipal Planning Commission voted to approve changing the language in the city’s code regarding real estate signs.
Current wording requires all real estate signs be on the property being offered for sale. This, attorney Kim Rose and Realtor Dave Culbertson told the commission, makes it difficult for Realtors to let the community know of property for sale in areas such as a cul-de-sac. They requested the code be amended to allow one off-site sign per brokerage company at the edge of a cul-de-sac.
No real estate company would have more than one sign, said Rose. The proposed sign would be 12-by-18-inches, about half the size of a normal real estate sign. It would have no price or Realtor name on it, just the company logo and an arrow.
Several of the proposed signs have been in use on a trial basis, with the knowledge of Safety-Service Director Dave Glass, with no problems being encountered. Culbertson said the Realtors Association will be “self-policing,” and make sure only approved signs are erected. He said if a Realtor is in violation of the sign rule, he or she will receive an e-mail. If the sign is not pulled within three days, Culbertson will pull the sign and assess a fine to the Realtor’s association dues.
Because the proposed sign carries only a company arrow and logo, property owners who are selling the property themselves would not be able to erect an off-site sign.
The recommendation to change the code language will be forwarded to City Council.
Frank Rosato of the Southgate Corp. spoke to the commission about the possibility of building the remaining units at Maple Wood Condominiums on a smaller scale than originally intended. There are three buildings yet to built before Phases 1 and 2 are completed.
“There has been a lot of individuals come forth looking for condos a little smaller,” he said.
Rosato said consideration is being given to building the remaining condos around 1,000 square feet; current ones are 1,500 square feet. Pricing would drop from $168,000 to $172,000, to around $140,000 for the smaller units.
“We think with the discussion we’ve seen from people coming into the project, that something like this is warranted,” said Rosato.
The smaller condos would have the same exterior appearance as the ones already built.
City engineer Cameron Keaton questioned whether anyone has spoken with current condominium residents to get their reaction to smaller-sized condos. Rosato said some of the sales staff have thrown out the idea to residents, and, to his knowledge, have not received any negative feedback.
Commission member Austin Swallow said he’s spoken with two residents, both of whom were in favor of the smaller condos.
Thirty-two of the 42 condos built have been sold. The commission approved a modification in size of the remaining three units yet to be built.
A preliminary discussion was held about a request for a lot split at 303 N. Jefferson St. Glass said owner Kyle Waggoner would like to rehab the two houses on the property, and splitting the lot into two properties would help facilitate Waggoner getting a loan to improve the properties. Splitting the lot would create two sub-standard lots.
The commission will review the matter further at its next meeting.