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Serving Northern St. Louis County, Minnesota

Wolf Lake tract tops area tax-forfeited property sales

Final online auction of the year nets county almost $1.5 million

David Colburn
Posted 10/13/21

REGIONAL – An undeveloped lakeshore property on Wolf Lake, southwest of Ely, was the highest-priced North Country property to sell in the final online sale of tax-forfeited properties in St. …

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Wolf Lake tract tops area tax-forfeited property sales

Final online auction of the year nets county almost $1.5 million

Posted

REGIONAL – An undeveloped lakeshore property on Wolf Lake, southwest of Ely, was the highest-priced North Country property to sell in the final online sale of tax-forfeited properties in St. Louis County that ended on Oct. 7.
Thirty-eight of the 64 properties offered by the county Land and Minerals department were snapped up by bidders for $1.49 million, the county’s most successful online sale to date. Twenty-four of the properties had competing bids.
A 19.5-acre tract on the north side of Wolf Lake with about 1,500 feet of lake frontage, across from the boat landing, sold for the listed valuation of $157,500 to Evan Sheets. According to county property records, Evan and Rachelle Sheets, of Minneapolis, own an adjacent 3.5-acre parcel to the east with 865 feet of lake frontage.
The other area lake property to sell was a 2.58-acre parcel on Elbow Lake, in Beatty Township, with about 310 feet of lake frontage and water access. Deborah J. Ralston-Wolfe paid the list price of $48,750. Ralston-Wolfe and Charles R. Wolfe, both of Duluth, are the owners of record for adjacent parcels on either side of the recently purchased one.
Three other Elbow Lake tracts, two Ban Lake parcels in Beatty Township, and two Pine Island properties in Breitung Township failed to attract any bidders.
David and Myranda Grecinger, of Cook, were the successful bidders on a 7.9-acre tract on undeveloped platted roads west of Vermilion Drive and northeast of the railroad grade. A portion of the property is zoned suburban residential, and the remainder is zoned residential district. The parcel is one that apparently attracted multiple bidders, as the Grecingers’ successful bid of $42,100 was about $16,000 more than the listed price of $26,025.
A 14.73-acre tract lying primarily at the southwest corner of the Highway 135/Wahlsten Rd. intersection in Kugler Township was purchased by Michael J. Jankowski for $15,000, slightly higher than the $13,125 list price. A portion of the tract is bisected by the highway and adjoins the Iron Ore Trail on the eastern border.
Another contested property was a 3.88-acre parcel in Leiding Township that is west of the Highway 53/Johnson Rd. intersection. Daniel Fife was the successful bidder with an offer of $6,000, $3,300 more than the listed price.
A triangular-shaped 2.9-acre plot near the south entry to Cook on Highway 53 may have been the most profitable parcel of the auction in terms of ratio of asking price to successful bid. The parcel is several hundred feet south of the Johnson Rd. intersection, bordered by Highway 53 on the east and the Cook city limit on the west. The property description said the parcel is predominantly wetland and may not be suitable for development.
Listed at only $525, Carlyn Attama’s winning bid of $7,100 was more than 13 times greater than that amount.
Revenue from the sale of tax-forfeited properties is used in a variety of ways, including to cover operating costs of the Land and Minerals Department, which receives no levy funding. Additionally, the county board may designate a percentage of funds to be used for timber development and/or to support recreation and economic development activities. Remaining funds are apportioned among school districts, towns, and the county general fund.
For more information about tax-forfeited land sales, or to subscribe to receive email notifications about updates and future sales, visit stlouiscountymn.gov/landsales or call the Land and Minerals Department at 218-726-2606.

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