Thursday, February 27, 2014
2818 Colfax Ave. N., Where Five Children Died In Fire, Was Sold In 2009 For A Mere $10,500 To Slumlord Paul Bertelson...
Contributed photo, blog post by John Hoff
Asking for anonymity, a reader who is familiar with the real estate biz send this blog some information about the sale of 2818 Colfax Ave. N. to Mission Inn Minnesota, a rental property empire controlled by Paul "Slumlord Doing Good For Jesus" Bertelson. The rental property was the site of a fatal fire that claimed the lives of five children on Valentine's Day...
Prior to the death of the children in the fire, incredibly, their mother had died and they were left by authorities in the care of their father, Troy Lewis, a convicted rapist and registered predatory offender from Cook County.
But in regard to 2818 Colfax Ave. N, it appears the property was originally listed at $39,900 but the last list price was $14,900. Even that price wasn't low enough for Bertelson, who snapped up the property for $10,500 in October of 2009.
Focusing in particular on the heat source in that house, MLS listed the heat source as "forced air."
It's not clear why, if the house had forced air in 2009, the people who lived on the second and third floor were using electric baseboard heat supplemented with a space heater in 2014. One can't help but think whatever Bertelson did to the house, he did it on the cheap and threw renters inside as quickly as possible. Who cares how much utilities cost, after all, if the utilities are paid for with public assistance?
This behavior is typical of slumlords in North Minneapolis and the city makes no attempt to require cheaper, safer, more efficient heating sources in rental properties that slumlords fill with impoverished people dependent on public assistance. It is doubtful even the death of five children will spur anybody to crack down on slumlords the way decent people in North Minneapolis have been screaming about for decades.
JNS blog has heard further interesting rumors about the accidental cause of the fire but has no confirmation. Stay tuned.