ELMIRA, N.Y. (WETM) – A 103-year-old Elmira home that caught the attention of the HGTV show “Cheap Old Houses” has sold for $48,500 according to Howard Hanna Real Estate. That’s 23% below the original asking price of $59,900 for the property located at 415 William Street. 18 News confirmed with Keller Williams Realty the new owner is Donal Nelting. In a phone call, Nelting told 18 News he is turning the home into a haunted house for Halloween. Nelting said several thousand dollars’ worth of animatronic figures are being set up inside. On the front lawn, at least a dozen inflatable figures have yet to be inflated. Nelting says the property still has no electricity as he waits for NYSEG to turn the power back on. On Facebook, he posted he is relying on generators in the meantime.
Thursday afternoon, Elmira Code Enforcement told 18 News Nelting has not applied for a permit yet. The Code Department says it has the power to shut the haunted house down if it is found to be operating without a permit. Nelting told 18 News he is looking into the required permits to operate a haunted house. He says tickets will be $25. He says $5 from each sale will be donated to the Salvation Army.
Mr. Nelting told 18 News he recently moved to Elmira from Seattle. On Facebook, he goes by D 12 MAN and describes himself as an entrepreneur. He posted that he is turning the home into a haunted house to help pay for the property’s renovations. Nelting posted that he is also organizing a “Haunted Halloween Havoc Block Party” on Tuesday, October 31st. He says the haunted house will be open from dusk until midnight. After Halloween, Nelting says he plans to turn the property into a restaurant, cafe, shoe shine and Airbnb “at the least.” Nelting says he is also considering other options for the property that will be known as “HD12MAN Services.”
The home near the corner of William Street and East 2nd Street is next to Meals on Wheels of Chemung County and a block away from the Finn Academy. According to Keller Williams Realty, the sale closed on October 4th, 2023. Chemung County property records have not been updated yet to reflect the change in ownership. The Chemung County Clerk’s Office told 18 News it has still not received the new deed. Property records show the previous owner bought the home in 2019 for $28,000. Records show the 2023 “Full Market Value” is listed at $166,700.