Three companies, all managed by Stacy Martin of Hermitage Realty, own 15 vacant houses within 4 blocks of my house (including the 2 pictured above). These companies collectively have over 90 houses on the the city’s Vacant Property Registry, the vast majority of which are in the East End.
Inspired by the Richmond Slumlord Watch post on the city’s Vacant Property Registry, I started digging around the ownership of some vacants near by. I quickly ran across variations of the same name: some sort of investment group and “c/o Stacy Martin”.
Searching the city’s Parcel Mapper by name then turned up that both Premier Investment Properties Llc C/o Stacy Martin and Clayton Investment Group Llc C/o Stacy Martin each own over 50 houses across the city, many of them vacant. Stacy Martin also turns up on Tower Building Properties Llc C/o Stacy Martin, who own more than 30 houses across the city.
To state this directly: collectively these 3 companies c/o Stacy Martin own ~140 houses, 90+ of which are vacant, most of them in the East End.
As RSW points out, Stacy Martin is a real estate agent at West End real estate firm Hermitage Realty, Donald Lacey’s firm. Donald Lacey, you might recall, took a buch of invester money to fix up houses but instead apparently burned through millions on vacation homes, boats, and expensive cars.
Here is where it starts to feel kind of personal and a touch wicked: these companies own at least 15 vacant houses within 4 blocks of my house, including one directly behind me. They own 3 on the 2300 block of Fairmount Avenue and another in the 2200 block. They own 3 more vacants on the 1200 block of 24th Street and one each in the 1110 and 1300 blocks. They own vacants on the 1200 and 1300 blocks of 22nd Street and the 1300 block of 21st Street. None of these house are being renovated.
None of the houses are apparently for sale. Few if any have seen improvement in the past 5 years other than the boards that went up over the windows. These century-old frame houses are let to sit and age and slowly degrade.
These companies, together with the notorious Bayou Properties, easily own 80% of the vanant houses in almost a half-mile radius of my house. These 3 companies c/o Stacy Martin are the anti-BHC, if you will, single-handedly stalling any progress towards rebuilding the physical fabric of the community.
Unlike Lawrence Oliver’s Bayou Properties, these investment groups at least seem to have a handle on how to keep up with the basic maintence on the properties. None are outrageously overgrown, none are strewn with trash or appear to be the center of illicit activity. They are, though, dead spots in a neighborhood fighting to fight the good fight to reverse decades of decline and abandonment.
Beyond this pocket of vacancies in Fairmount, these three companies own almost 100 properties in the East End (many of which are vacant, of course).
Each marker on the map below represents a property owned by one of the 3 companies connected to Stacy Martin. Zoom in and scroll around to get the full effect or check out the big map
The yellow houses above are the vacants in Fairmount that initially caught my attention. The blue markers indicate properties in the East End listed to Premier Investment Properties Llc C/o Stacy Martin. The green markers indicate properties in the East End listed to Clayton Investment Group Llc C/o Stacy Martin. The red markers indicate properties in the East End listed to Tower Building Properties Llc C/o Stacy Martin.