Sunday, November 25, 2007

Texan town sold on eBay

SAN ANTONIO - Putting up a winning bid of $3.8 million, an unknown Italian buyer purchased today a five-hectare, unpopulated and one-house town in Texas through the online auction site eBay.

But before Bobby Cave, who currently owns the town of Albert, signs the deed over, he must first figure out if the winning bid is legitimate.

Cave said that unlike the usual items bought through eBay, there are no contractual obligations when it comes to real estate.

The 47-year-old real estate agent from Texas says it all turned out great.

If the deal goes through, the winning buyer will inherit an icehouse created from the frame of the old general store, a pavilion, an 85-year-old dance hall, a tractor shed and a three-bedroom house.

Bridgeville, in northern California, was the first town ever put on the eBay auction block. The 34 hectares were twice sold on the site, in 2002 (that deal fell through) and again last year.

The reserve price for the town was $2.5 million. Even if the deal does not go through, Cave said he has about five other prospective buyers genuinely interested in the town.

Albert is about 60 miles north of San Antonio.

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