Concord 1930s home on auction block

Allen Craven has been an auctioneer for more than 30 years, but until this week he's never auctioned real estate.

Craven, who owns Weichert Realtors in Concord and partners with John Haldane in Craven Haldane Auctions Inc., will auction a historic home at 180 Union St. N.

The home, which Craven said is valued at close to $300,000, will be sold at absolute auction, with no reserve price. That means it will sell for the highest bid, regardless of the amount. It could be as little as $100, on up to beyond its valuation.

The home is about 3,000 square feet, with three bedrooms and 31/2 baths. High vaulted ceilings, large closets and hardwood floors are all points that Craven believes buyers will be interested in.

"It's a great house," Craven said. "But if you just listed it (as a routine real estate sale), everyone would want to come through and pick it to pieces, so to speak."

A family named Foard originally owned the property, about 41 acres. The property was divided in 1920 and bought by Charles Cannon, longtime president of Cannon Mills Co.

In 1922, the empty lot was sold to Edna Wadsworth, who deeded it to her son, Dr. "Kit" Wadsworth, in 1930.

Dr. Wadsworth built the home. He lived there until his death in 1976. The property was sold to Betsey West Odell, who lived there until 2007, and the home passed to her daughter Grace O. Kelly of Raleigh.

"It's not her plans to move back into the house," Craven said. So she decided to sell the house for whatever she can get - a no-reserve auction.

The home is being sold "as is," and it needs some work, he said: The electricity isn't new, there is no central air conditioning, and it's heated by a gas boiler and radiant heat.

But the home has many attractive points, Craven said. It has an entry hall, a large living room with fireplace, a wet bar, a formal dining room, a butler's pantry, a country kitchen and a utility porch. The auction company has made several major improvements to utilities.

"If you have ever thought about living in a historic home on Union Street, here's your chance to buy one at a price you want to pay for it," he said.

The auction will begin at 11 a.m. Thursday. Bidders must be registered with Craven Haldane by noon Tuesday. For information on requirements to bid, call Weichert Realtors, 704-788-1122, or Craven Haldane Auctions, 704-886-1443.