by Max Brantley
Want to own a house once occupied by a future president of the United States? Make that wannabe future POTUS? You may have missed your chance.
The Murfreesboro Diamond and the Glenwood Herald have reported and the Nashville News will report Thursday that Gov. Huckabee's home on Lake Greeson is about to be sold. (Daisy, presumably, isn't the best place to reside if you're planning to be flying in and out of town for presidential campaign appearances.) Huckabee is slated to move to a post at Ouachita Baptist after he leaves office in January. The proceeds from a house sale should cover a pied a terre in Arkadelphia.
Note: That's not the house. The trailer belongs to the State Police, which reportedly will take its trailer when the governor leaves. The house isn't visible from the road.
Thanks to Lawrence Graves at the Nashville News for sharing the scoop:
By Lawrence Graves & Michael Graves
DAISY - Arkansas Governor Mike and Janet Huckabee's lake house on Lake Greeson is for sale. One area realtor said a close is expected within two to three weeks. Realtors would not disclose the identity of the potential buyer or buyers.
The rumor in the Mount Joy community is that the asking price is $380,000, a figure that a realtor with knowledge of the deal said is too high.
A spokesman for the governor's office said she was not privy to Gov. Huckabee's personal dealings, was not aware of any pending sale of the Lake Greeson house, and since the governor is traveling in Japan, she was not sure she would be able to obtain a comment from him.
A Nashville real estate firm, Stavely & Associates, is handling the sale.Owner Eddie Stavely said ``it is not a done deal.'' Stavely employees have recently asked for copies of real estate deeds and other records in the Pike County Courthouse and shown the property to individuals. The property does not have any ``for sale'' signs nor is it listed on Stavely's website.
The Huckabee property is located just off Highway 71 70 west of the incorporated town of Daisy in Pike County and about a mile down Mount Joy Cemetery Road.
A locked white metal bar gate at 31 Morning View Drive and ``No Trespassing'' and ``Security by RC Alarms'' signs mark the entrance. A house trailer, which serves as a guard shack when the governor is present, is located immediately to the left inside of the gate. The house trailer will apparently not remain with the property should it sell, according to one source. A ranch-style home is barely visible down the winding dirt road.
According to records in the Pike County Assessor's office, the property is appraised at $170,150 for tax purposes. It includes a single-story 1,400-square-foot frame house and basement, a detached garage, a 24 ft. by 32 ft. boat dock, and 1.9 acres of land.
The Huckabees paid $1,264.67 in county taxes on the property for the 2004 tax year. Because of the addition of the garage their tax payment for 2005, due in October, is $1,337.38, according to the Assessor's office.
Besides being a getaway vacation home for the Arkansas governor - mentioned as a possible presidential candidate - and first lady, it has at least one other distinguishing characteristic which may enhance its value - a private boat dock. Most of the properties near Lake Greeson do not have docks because the Corps of Engineers owns the shoreline. One realtor said that in the case of the Huckabee residence, she thought the Corps neglected to buy the shoreline property and thus the property owners have what most Lake Greeson home owners do not have - beachfront property.
According to courthouse records, Michael and Janet Huckabee bought the property in November, 1998 from Delta and Ethel Naylor for about $151,330. The Huckabees borrowed $130,000 from Bank of the Ozarks, according to a warranty deed in the courthouse. The deed was subsequently assigned to Hibernia National Bank on Nov. 23, 1998.
UPDATE: We believe this is the Huckabee home on Lake Greeson.