01/22/08 — Borden Lofts steps closer to start date

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Borden Lofts steps closer to start date

By Anessa Myers
Published in News on January 22, 2008 1:46 PM

The developers behind the Borden Mill Loft Condomini-ums say they need only 15-20 more people to show interest in purchasing lofts before an anticipated spring construction start.

When Robby Baker, part-owner of the Borden Lofts company, announced the project in December, he mentioned that keeping the historic mill as part of Goldsboro's landscape was going to take a community commitment in addition to private investment.

So far, between seven and nine parties have shown interest in purchasing lofts, Baker said.

"We're really happy to be doing this in Goldsboro," he said. "We have received great support, not only from the town government, but from people in the community."

Once Borden Lofts receives between 25 and 30 interested parties, the company will begin renovating the Borden Manufacturing Co. buildings into condominiums.

The company started pre-selling the lofts in December, and hopes to begin construction March 1. The first units should be completed by Dec. 31.

Right now, the company is planning to renovate the buildings into 65 lofts ranging from 950 to 1,600 square feet each with two or three bedrooms and two bathrooms. A laundry room and a separate storage room will also be included in each unit.

The building's lofts will have the best of both worlds -- the charm of the historical building as well as a modern interior complete with new electrical, plumbing and heating systems and other aesthetic improvements.

The design plan is to try to include as many custom elements as possible to each individual loft, but each will have what really gives the building its character -- the 16-foot ceilings, exposed brick, the existing six-inch thick hardwood floors, 8-inch-by-8-inch wooden beams and large windows.

But to really customize their condominiums, people are urged to buy them early.

Pre-construction buyers will have design flexibility. Kitchen and bathroom locations can't be changed in the designs, but other interior changes can be made at little or no additional cost to the selling price. If purchased before construction, each buyer will be able to move or remove interior walls, enlarge or shrink closets and add or delete entire rooms. Other items, like cabinets, countertops, built-in bookshelves, bathtubs, showers and appliances, can be customized to the buyer's choice.

Cabinets will be custom-made with European hinges and raised panel doors, but, some buyers can choose to change the cabinets, if the unit is purchased early enough. In the bathrooms, the standard shower will be fiberglass, but the buyer may upgrade to a cast iron or Jacuzzi tub with ceramic tile, marble or granite trim.

Inside parking spaces will also be leased to buyers on a first-come, first served basis. They will be assigned, numbered and leased separate from condominium ownership. Each space will come with a remote-controlled garage door.

If not for the leniency in design and choices for customization, then buyers are encouraged to buy early for another reason -- the price.

The first 20 units will sell for $115 to $118 per square foot, but after the 20th sale, prices will increase. The company may choose to honor the low prices beyond 20 units, however, if they receive an influx of early buyers.

The basic unit price includes the current floor plan, storage room, exposed brick walls, finished hardwood floors or flooring allowance, secured access to the building, two outside parking spaces, the right to lease inside parking spaces, a high efficiency heat pump, double wall soundproofing between adjoining units, new or refurbished energy efficient windows, two cable hookups, two phone lines with three hookups, cultured marble bath countertops, dead bolt locks on all outside doors, fire alarms and sprinkler system, city water and sewer, white bathroom fixtures, Aqua Glass showers and tubs and chrome shower doors.

Each buyer will also receive allowances for cabinets ($10,000), kitchen countertops (Formica is standard), bathroom countertops, bathroom shower or tub, flooring, doors, moldings, appliances ($1,300), internet/cablevision (four connections), light fixtures ($1,000) and wall colors.

The buildings will also have Homeowners Association that will develop rules and regulations for the loft condominiums. Pre-construction buyers will have yet another perk -- helping to choose those rules and regulations.

The homeowner's dues are estimated to be about $100 per month. They will include will include water, garbage, heating, air conditioning and painting of common areas; maintenance of the roof, parking lots, landscaping and elevators; and contribution to a capital reserve for future roof repair. Once the project is completed, the association may choose to increase or decrease the dues.

Those who purchase the condominiums will also be eligible for tax credits.

Usually, Baker said, developers use the tax credit, but Borden Lofts is passing the credit on to condominium buyers.

Since the Borden Manufac-turing Co. buildings are listed as a certified property on the National Register of Historic Places, the building is eligible for historic preservation tax credits from the state and the National Park Service.

A tax credit isn't a deduction from income as a charitable donation would be -- it is a deduction, dollar for dollar, from income tax paid.

The tax credits are used as incentives for historic preservation. Borden Lofts will provide buyers with all the forms they need to claim tax credits.

Condominiums that are owner-occupied or as a rent-free residence for a family member or friend are eligible for a 30 percent state historic preservation tax credit or a 40 percent mill rehabilitation tax credit.

The lofts that are purchased for income-producing means are eligible for a 20 percent state historic rehabilitation tax credit plus a 20 percent federal historic preservation credit -- a total 40 percent tax credit. Or, investors can receive a 40 percent state mill rehabilitation tax credit plus a 20 percent federal historic preservation credit, totaling 60 percent in tax credits.

The building can only be 50 percent investment property.

Fabrica Development Inc. will handle sales and development of the project. Baker, who is also the project manager, will be able to answer any questions as well as help with purchasing a unit. Those interested can contact him at 910-443-2463 for more information.

Those wishing to purchase a condominium before Feb. 15 may secure a spot with a refundable deposit of $1,000. The check date will serve as the buyer's place in line and will determine the order in which the buyer selects a unit. By Feb. 15, the blueprints will be available for buyers' review. At that point, buyers will need to sign a purchase agreement, make a $6,000 non-refundable deposit and select a unit.