MISSOULA - A plan to break a single parcel containing 19 homes into an equal number of individual lots won the approval of Missoula County and will give current renters an opportunity to move into ownership.
The project, which required subdivision approval from the county, covers 8 acres along Highway 200 east of the Bonner mill. The property’s 19 homes are currently used as rentals but will slowly convert to owner-occupied.
“The purpose is to take these rental units that have all been under one ownership and divide them so they can be sold to different members of the public,” said Dan Fultz, a project representative with IMEG. “They will be offered to the existing renters first at market value with no competition.”
The homes were each constructed around 1925 as part of the old mill and are now owned by Bonner West Homes LLC. Of the 19 current residential units, project partners said the occupants of roughly five units have expressed interest in purchasing.
They’ll have first dibs at acquiring their home after which each property will be placed on the open market.
“Just given the housing context in Missoula, this makes a tremendous amount of sense to get these out to platted lots,” said Commissioner Dave Strohmaier.
The county’s subdivision approval came with a number of conditions, though none will prevent the project from moving forward. The Bonner Community Council supports subdividing the property and moving the homes into the market.
“They were in full support and thought it would help the neighborhood,” said Fultz. “Homeownership tends to create more vibrant neighborhoods.”