FORT PIERCE – Keith Danks, a businessman from Grand Forks, N.D., doesn’t know yet what he will do with the seven-bedroom home overlooking the Indian River Lagoon, but he seemed happy to have bought it at auction Saturday for less than $600,000.
About 150 people, including several art dealers, attended the auction at the former home of once prominent attorney Vincent Lloyd on South Beach, which had been surrendered last month to Oculina Bank. Many attendees left having bought at least one piece of furniture or something from Lloyd’s extensive collection of furniture, art and literature.
Danks, who has a commercial real estate business in North Dakota, has spent parts of the past five winters in a Fort Pierce condominium he owns. He said he bought the 6,937 square foot home, at 1109 Fernandina St., as an investment. The house, completed in 1985, sits on the southernmost of three lots that total 2.8 acres, including more than 800 feet of waterfront along the Indian River Lagoon, south of the Fort Pierce Inlet.
Several Realtors who attended the auction said that Danks got at least a good deal, even though he bought only the one lot.
Fort Pierce real estate broker Lon Parsons said, “For about $600,000, that’s a lot of house.”
Danks said he intended to bid when the three lots were offered as an aggregate, “but I forgot to raise my hand; I guess I froze.” That means he will have to give up the circular driveway unless he works out a deal with Mariner Bay residents Ed and Diane Hyer, who bought the middle lot for $258,500, including the 10 percent buyer’s premium collected by Stuart-based auctioneer Elliot Paul.
Ed Hyer said he is interested in building a house on the ¾ acre lot, which has 125 feet of waterfront.
After buying the house, Danks proceeded to spend about $10,000 more buying some of the furnishings and artwork, including less than $800 for a dining table and six matching chairs that were custom built in Oregon for $25,000. Danks said he may turn the property into a rental home, so buying a lot of the furniture at auction prices would save him the time and expense of replacing it.
Oculins Executive Vice President Chris Russell was the high bidder on the 1.3 acre northernmost lot, which has about 550 feet of waterfront that curves around the river, but said he quickly flipped it for $145,000 to Charlie Hayek, former Fort Pierce mayoral candidate.
Ron Rennick, a Realtor in Vero Beach who bought 15 pieces – mostly sculptures from Lloyd’s art collection for the gallery he owns – was more reserved in his assessment of the prices paid. “I think they got what it’s worth,” Rennick said. “Look at how many people were here; that’s the market.”
So while the total amount Oculina Bank received from the auction – about $900,000 for the real estate and more that $30,000 from the sale of Lloyd’s personal property – did not quite meet Russell’s $1 million target, he said he was satisfied with the results.
Lloyd, 63, was a prominent figure in Fort Pierce downtown redevelopment, who helped renovate more than a dozen downtown buildings since coming to the area in 1973.
He has a history of arrests involving crack cocaine and underage sex, records show, starting with an arrest in August 2001 when an undercover sting found him with crack cocaine. He was convicted of driving under the influence in 2002. Florida Bar records show Lloyd’s law license has been suspended since February 2005.