Torres Team cuts ribbon on Perry’s first new houses in years


Cutting the ribbon on a new Cornerstone Homes construction on Sunflower Street in Perry were, from left, Macinzie McFarland, Sarah Cregeen, Theresa Sinclair, Emily Leslie, Debra Lucht, Julie Scheib, Zack Cregeen with scissors, Travis Landgrebe, Misty VonBehren, Shane Torres, Matt McDevitt, Scott Oswalt Cornerstone Homes, Brenda Weers, Dr, Randy McCaulley, Sven Peterson, Don Thomas, Amy Rathje, Shawn Kenney, Juda Saemisch and Polk City Chamber of Commerce Director Desiree Pliler.

The latest milestone in Perry’s flourishing housing market was reached Tuesday when the Perry Chamber of Commerce hosted a ribbon cutting for two new spec houses in the Sunflower Flats development north of the Perry Elementary School.

“This is a great day for Perry,” said Dr. Randy McCaulley, president of Perry Economic Development, as he welcomed about 30 people to the rainy afternoon event. “It’s been several years since we’ve seen new houses, and it’s important for communities to continue to grow.”

The new houses are owned by the Polk City developer ACG Properties LLC and brokered by Shane Torres of the RE/MAX Torres Team. Scott Oswalt of Cornerstone Homes built the new houses, one a three-bedroom, two-story, 1,467-square-foot house at 2114 Sunflower St. and the second a three-bedroom, ranch-style, 1,111-square-foot house at 2205 Sunflower St.

Each house is listed for slightly more than $200,000. The realtor for the houses is the Torres Team’s Zack Cregeen, a Perry native and PHS graduate who brought a number of family members along to help celebrate the event.

“These are just the first of many new homes we hope to build in Perry,” Cregeen said. He was joined by his wife, Sarah Cregeen, parents, Terry and Deanna Cregeen, brother, Greg Cregeen, and a number of other scampering youngsters.

Perry City Administrator Sven Peterson echoed McCaulley’s praise of the public-private partnership that brought about the new construction and noted the houses are the first built under Perry’s recently approved property tax abatement program, an element in the city’s urban renewal plan.

“We’re really excited,” Peterson said. “These homes qualify for our new-construction program, which is 10 years, with the first five years being 100 percent tax abatement.”

Matt McDevitt, a member of Perry Economic Development whose leadership spurred the 2016 housing needs assessment that led to the abatement program, predicted blue skies for Perry in spite of Tuesday’s rain.

“We love Perry, and Perry is growing in population and size,” McDevitt said. “We really worked together well — the Perry Chamber and Perry Economic Development and Cornerstone Homes and the Torres Team — to be able to stand in the home we’re in today.”

Sweetening the tax-abatement incentive was the New Resident Welcome Package. McDevitt said some 25 local businesses donated products and service to the welcome package, a donation worth $2,500 and including items such as a one-year permit for the Raccoon River Valley Trail, a free stay at the Hotel Pattee, a custom-made frying pan from the Progressive Foundry, six-month memberships to Snap Fitness and the McCreary Community Building, a free lifetime subscription to and many other alluring enticements.

Torres and Oswalt said they are eager to see these first two houses sell so that they can build two more in Sunflower Flats.


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