New York investment firm gobbling up real estate in north St. Lo - KMOV.com

New York investment firm gobbling up real estate in north St. Louis County

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Several homes on Aspen Drive in North County are owned by an out town company, CSMA BLT LLC. Credit: KMOV Several homes on Aspen Drive in North County are owned by an out town company, CSMA BLT LLC. Credit: KMOV
ST. LOUIS COUNTY, MO -

If you live in north St. Louis County there's a good chance your block has a growing number of rental properties. 

On Aspen Drive in Florissant, Paul Rutherford has noticed the trend. 

"There are more rental properties here than homeowners," he said. 

Rutherford purchased his home in the mid-1970's and has watched his neighborhood change over the years.

He added, "I don't even know most of these people" when talking about his neighbors. 

On Aspen Drive, four of the homes are owned by an entity called CSMA BLT LLC. 

The organization now owns 617 houses in St. Louis County. 

The tax bill for many of the homes is sent to an investment firm called Cerberus Capitol Management in New York City. 

On its website, Cerberus Capital Management claims to manage 30 billion in assets including its real estate portfolio.

"I believe any community when they see out of state purchases in mass in one neighborhood it has to be concerning," said Rebecca Zoll. 

Zoll is the president of North County Inc, a group that promotes neighborhood stability. 

Her organization works with local banks and credit unions to assist people who want to purchase homes in north St. Louis County.

She said, "Send them to us. We will connect them with bankers that can help" and added "even if their credit score isn't as high as it should be." 

Zoll believes "when you have homes that are owned, families are more likely to invest in that home." 

Back on Aspen Drive Rutherford believes the growing number of rental properties is having a negative impact on his property value. 

He said, "it never appreciates your house when you're around rental properties."

News 4 made several attempts to ask Cerberus Capitol questions about their motives for purchasing hundreds of houses in St. Louis County, but nobody with the organization responded. 

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