The structure along Lincoln Highway in Nevada that was, for many years, a funeral home has changed hands a couple times and is for sale again.
An inquiry from a reader asked if I could tour the property and report on what all has been done there and why it’s being sold again. Property owner Clark Weltha, a retired plumber from Ames, was more than happy to give me a tour of the property and talk about his reasons for listing it for sale at this time.
Weltha bought the structure in February of 2012 and has been busy making improvements over the past 15-16 months. He estimates that he has done around $100,000 worth of work to the upper levels of the place, which are currently the living areas.
Weltha has divided the second level of the home into two apartments, and both apartments enjoy either new or totally remodeled kitchens, new flooring or refinished floors, new windows and other amenities.
The larger of the two apartments, on the east side, features two nice-sized bedrooms, a remodeled kitchen and a big dining room. But perhaps the coolest thing about the east apartment is the patio that you get to through a new door on the south side of the dining room.
Weltha had work done to reinforce the roof of the carport area on the south side of the property, and then fenced around a portion of that roof to make a deck overlooking the Lincoln Highway. He admits it is a place he enjoys very much, and he points out that the large trees on that side offer shade to the deck/patio area at almost all times of the day.
The second apartment, on the west side, is a bit smaller, but still has two bedrooms and a small, but all new kitchen and a nice-sized living room space. He said there’s the potential to put a deck/patio area outside that apartment as well by putting a door on the far end of the living room.
In addition to the two apartments, the second level also features a laundry room area. Then, a third level to the home offers the possibility for a potential small studio apartment if someone wanted to do that work.
A tour of the third level also reveals a lot of new insulation that Weltha has put in. Insulation, new siding and the patching up of pipes and leaks throughout the structure are other improvements Weltha has been making, along with replacing an old boiler system in the upstairs with a furnace and air conditioning.
An interesting guy
Weltha came to Ames in 1964, after he got out of the Service, to work for Ed Gibbs at Gibbs Plumbing. A plumber for 32 years, he also previously ran a pawn shop, called Ames Pawn.
A guy who says he always “wants to be doing something,” Weltha had purchased other area properties, in Gilbert and McCallsburg, fixed them up and then sold them. When he bought the property he’s in now, he wasn’t sure exactly what his plans were. He liked the space in the place – which comes to 2,793 square feet on the main floor; over 3,000 square feet on the second and third floors, and over 2,000 square feet in the basement. He thought he could fill the place with a lot of antiques and (with the many garage stalls) cars, something else he likes to tinker with.
But after a long, cold winter, Weltha said his thoughts have turned to moving south.
If the property doesn’t sell quickly, he said he may consider leasing parts of it out.
When he thinks about the spacious main floor, which features several big open spaces and a generously sized office, Weltha can see a tea room, a craft or antique store, a bridal boutique … even a restaurant. And if someone were to go with a restaurant, tea room or other type of food business, he said part of the garage would be his thought of where to put the kitchen.
There are so many possibilities and so much space.
“As a whole, it’s been fun doing it (making improvements), but if I do it again (down South), I will probably pick a ranch house and a smaller place … something I could maybe stay in,” he said.
The Weltha property was listed several weeks ago through Hunziker in Nevada. It is listed at $325,000.
(Marlys Barker is editor of the Nevada Journal.)