Land Bank member and Paulding County Treasurer LuAnn Wannemacher leaves an open house at 848 W. Perry Street, Paulding, showcasing a success of the Land Bank on Wednesday, May 4, 2022. (Photo/Adam Papin)

PAULDING – Local civic leaders, elected officials and members of the Paulding County Land Reutilization Corporation, commonly known as the Land Bank, descended on West Perry Street here Wednesday morning to celebrate a success story.

Jacob Gentz, owner of JakePlaces, hosted the open house for his newest home construction at 848 W. Perry Street.

“I purchased a couple properties the Land Bank owned in January 2021. We got started on construction. One house on Jackson Steet was completed last August, and this one was completed at the beginning of this year,” said Gentz.

“I really appreciate working with the Land Bank, the village, and the county. Everyone has been accommodating and really wants to see this be a success. One of the goals of this project was to offer an affordable, entry level home with a unique design that would get an initial spec model out in the community, so people can see what I do.”

Gentz added that despite the challenges in the marketplace, including supply chain issues, labor shortages and inflation, he is proud he was able to get a quality house completed at an affordable price for the new buyers. The house is expected to close by the end of this week, and it will be purchased by an individual returning to the area.

Greg White, Land Bank member and Paulding mayor, was impressed as well, “This beautiful home is a perfect example of just making the town better. It is what the Land Bank was created for, to clean up lots and give individuals the opportunity to do something that improves the village we live in.”

Paulding County Economic Development Director Tim Copsey agreed, “This is the exact purpose of what we are hoping to achieve with the Land Bank. The village was very approachable and easy to work with on making this happen, because they too saw a positive end goal that would regenerate taxes in the community. It’s also exciting to bring someone from outside the area back home.”

According to records from the Paulding County auditor’s site, the Land Bank acquired the property in August 2018 from J.P. Morgan Chase.