The William P. Warnock House
The William P. Warnock House, located at 508 First South Street in Enterprise, was constructed in 1910. The building reflects the popular architectural styles of the period such as Queen Anne and Colonial Revival.
The Warnock house was built using balloon framing, a unique American construction method developed in the mid - 19th century that made housing affordable to the working class. The house was originally built to house the children of the Warnock family and their cousins while they attended High School in Enterprise.
The house was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1984. John Evans, Irene Barklow and her daughter were instrumental in having the building recognized as a historic home. It was purchased in 2004 by Jack and Judy Burgoyne who have created a Bed and Breakfast out of the rambling farmhouse.
Jack and Judy Burgoyne are the first owners to take advantage of the Oregon State Special Assessment tax freeze that is available to owners of buildings that are on the National Register of Historic Places. Any owner of a historic building that is considering repairs or restoration work on their building should take the time to investigate the incentives available for buildings on the National Register.
The owners of the Warnock House, now known as the Enterprise House Bed and Breakfast, became interested in applying for the special assessment when they were planning some needed repairs and improvements and were concerned about the potential increase in property taxes. The Wallowa County Assessor suggested they investigate the Oregon State Special Assessment program. “The Assessor told us to look into the special tax assessment in order to freeze the taxes at the current level which would allow us to make the investment to improve the property without increasing property taxes for 10 years” Judy said.
The other benefit to being on the National Register is the sign they can have on highway 82 announcing the “Historic Enterprise House B&B”. Judy commented that in the summer at least one person a day drops by the B&B because of the highway sign.
Financial incentives are important tools in encouraging the preservation of historic buildings. Oregon's Special Assessment of Historic Property Program was the nation's first state-level historic preservation tax incentive. It "freezes "a property's assessed value for 10 years. It is most effective when the freeze is in place prior to any substantial rehabilitation of the property. Commercial properties like the Enterprise House B&B are eligible to apply for another 10 year period.
The Oregon State Historic Preservation website http://www.oregon.gov/OPRD/HCD/ SHPO/tax_assessment.shtml has the application forms, guidelines and instructions for how to apply for the Special Assessment. The property must be listed in the National Register of Historic Places or be considered historic by the State Historic Preservation Office, and listed on the National Register within two years of applying for the benefit program.
A preservation plan must be prepared that outlines the rehabilitation work the building will undergo during the 10-year period. There is an application fee and a certain percentage of the value of the property must be invested in rehabilitation within the first five years of the program. The Burgoynes created their preservation plan based on needed repairs and restoration that they had been hoping to accomplish over the next ten years.