INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (March 23, 2016) – Key Auctioneers sold Saddlebrook Golf Course Wednesday morning for $690,000 to a man representing a commercial real estate investor.
A bank foreclosed on the property last year after the former owners went into millions of dollars of debt. The new owner declined an interview about his plans for the property, leaving many in the community with questions about the land's future.
“We’re really concerned that if they bring in apartments or something like that there’s going to be a lot more density, a lot more traffic," 23-year Saddlebrook resident Linda Johnson said. "A lot of really good neighbors that have been here for a long time are thinking about leaving.”
Several local and regional golf club management companies attended the auction as well as hundreds of Saddlebrook residents.
Sunny Oberoi, an investor from Naperville, came to the auction interested in golf equipment, but for the right price was considering the course as well. He said he increased his budget after seeing the community's support for the course. He lost in a bidding war.
“I thought I was going to stop at $620 thousand something," he said. "I went a little bit out of my range after I saw how many people showed up.”
Jim Roush, who attended the auction, has lived on the 18th hole of Saddlebrook for 24 years and also worked at the course as a grounds keeper and in the pro shop.
“Somebody just got a great buy," Roush said.
He added the former owners ran into trouble after buying the property for too much money and not keeping up with maintenance, which resulted in fewer golfers.
“I want it to be a golf course still," Roush said. "Before I die, I want to still see it a golf course.”
“After putting this much time and effort into a home and a neighborhood you just don’t want to see it die," Johnson said.
The auction company said it does not release the names of its bidders.