PARKERSBURG, W.Va. — An iconic downtown building could be going up on the auction block.
A trustee sale of the Dils Center – home for more than 80 years to the Dils Brothers department store – has been scheduled for Monday, Dec. 14, on the Wood County Courthouse steps, according to a legal notice published in Monday’s edition of The Parkersburg News and Sentinel. The owner of the building, local partnership Camp Hobbyville, is in default on a deed of trust signed for the property in 2002, the notice says.
“Our problem is lack of tenants,” said Paul Hoblitzell, a partner in Camp Hobbyville.
Attorney David Huffman’s law office moved out of the building around the end of August, while the Volunteer Action Center, which occupied a great deal of space on one of the building’s floors, closed in 2014.
Only two tenants – Artcraft Studio and attorney Charles E. Stalnaker – are listed on the directory inside the building now, while the Downtown Specialty Bakery occupies 529 Juliana St., a storefront that is part of the Dils complex.
Hoblitzell declined to say how much was owed on the deed of trust, but documentation on file with the Wood County Clerk’s office says the lien shall not exceed $1.1 million.
The Dils Brothers store opened in the 400 block of Market Street in 1900. Five years later, it moved to 521 Juliana St.
The store closed in 1986, and Camp Hobbyville purchased the building from Dils Brothers and Company three years later.
The deed of trust was signed 13 years ago with WesBanco, but was sold in 2013 to Southern Financial Group Capital Partners II Ltd., of Waco, Texas.
In October, that company assigned Parkersburg law firm Golden and Vance as trustees for the property.
R. Vance Golden, with the firm, said there’s a chance steps can be taken to prevent the building from being auctioned in two weeks.
“I don’t know if we can work anything out with them or not,” Hoblitzell said. “We’d like to.”
The Dils Center has actually been up for sale for about four years, listed with Warfield Realtors of Parkersburg.
According to information from the Wood County Assessor’s office, the Dils building consists of six parcels, with a total appraised value of $864,900.
The total taxes on the building are $15,345.68 and are paid to date.
(Staff writer Pamela Brust contributed to this story.)