New life and development are coming to 1,100 homes, vacant lots and commercial space in Buffalo.
The city's annual tax foreclosure auction continues Tuesday and Wednesday, with highly sought after North and South Buffalo properties up for sale.
Hundreds packed into the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center for the first day of the city's annual tax foreclosure auction. Some were developers looking for a deal.
"I'm an East Side advocate, and I'm seeing a lot of action on the East Side today, more so than I have in the past, and the West Side is going for a premium, so I'd say the East Side is the new frontier," said Buffalo resident and shopper Gerhardt Yaskow.
Jesse Ima of North Tonawanda added, "I'm really passionate about real estate and what's happening the city of Buffalo. I really just want to be a part of it. This is my first time here, didn't think I was going to buy a property, but I did. So I hope that goes smooth. I got one in the First Ward area and I think the First Ward is definitely up and coming."
Others were buying for their personal use.
"I bought the vacant lot, land. It's next to my house. It's my parking lot," said Md Shahnurtamukder of Buffalo.
One man bought a home for when he moves here from New York City.
"The houses in New York City are more expensive than here. Here I find it a lot easier to buy the house, so I'm very excited," said Mohmad Hussain.
This year's auction included the fewest number of properties ever.
"Properties are selling. A lot of vacant lots are getting picked up,” said Martin Kennedy of the Buffalo Assessment and Tax Department. “Some properties I've noticed are selling for a good dollar. That's great because those properties will be rehabbed, brought back to a taxable status and an improvement to the neighborhoods.”
There were 1,100 properties to choose from, out of a list that originally included more than 3,000 sites. City officials were able to work out deals to help the current owners get caught up on their taxes and fees.
If a homeowner’s property is still at risk of being on the auction block, city officials say to come see them at the Assessment and Taxation department to try to work out a deal.
"We're more than willing to work with people the best we can, as long as people will work with us. We do not want people to be forced out of their property, at all, ever," said Kennedy.
The auction continues Tuesday and Wednesday at the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center. Registration starts at 7:30 a.m.