By Reg Chapman

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — One Minnesota city is trying something different to get people to invest in their town.

The small town of Henderson, located just southwest of the Twin Cities, took a big hit from the falling housing market. To get people building again, they’re ready to sell land at dirt cheap prices.

Auctioneer and appraiser Jim Fahey said the city has come up with a creative approach to spur new home construction.

“These folks are actually trying to force the market, by taking the dollars that are needed to build a home and letting buyers concentrate on their construction costs,” Fahey said.

Henderson will see 23 residential building lots on an online auction, and it’s offering huge savings for families willing to relocate.

“We’ve taken away all the assessments,” said Paul Menne of the Henderson City Council. “And for anyone who wants to build, who wants to invest in Henderson, we’ll waive all the building permit fees, connection fees and then we’ll auction them off for just $1.”

Menne helped design the plan that he hopes will get homes on these lots and increase the city’s tax base.

“What is best for the long term vitality and vibrancy of our community?” Menne said. “Getting more people who love Henderson there — that is the best thing.”

The lots usually go for around $25,000, and with the city’s help, families that build here can save anywhere from $30,000 to $40,000.

The online auction ends May 30 and the land will go to the highest bidder. Click here for more details.


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