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Owner renovating Main Street apartment complex

FORT KENT, Maine — When Brandon Smith purchased the B and M Apartments in Fort Kent at the end of 2016, he had in mind a five-year plan to renovate the dilapidated 30-unit property

Three years later, that plan is well underway.

Smith, a Caribou resident who owns and operates B.S. Carpentry, has so far completed major repairs within the East Main Street apartment complex. As anyone who has driven or walked by the B and M apartment complex most likely noticed, the two buildings comprising the complex are undergoing major changes as well.

Smith purchased the two buildings, which housed the St. Louis Convent and St. Louis Convent School up until 1969 before being converted into apartments, after learning about the buildings while performing roofing on another Fort Kent property.

“I thought it would be a great investment. I knew it needed a lot of work, but I thought it would be something to invest in,” Smith said. “I like buying buildings that are foreclosed like this one was. I just bought another one in Presque Isle that we’re gonna start on this winter.”

Over the past three years, Smith renovated the flooring in the hallways of the buildings as well as in almost every apartment. He also replaced the appliances in all 30 units, tore down an old building out back, and removed an old oil tank from the ground.

Smith also addressed mechanical issues with the buildings, including water pipes and and the furnace. He put in new LED lights throughout the property to cut electricity rates as well as performed general maintenance, such as replacing old doors.

“It’s just been on ongoing project,” he said.

Smith hired local painter Kyle Hampson to refresh the buildings’ exteriors.

“Painting the exterior is just another step to get rid of the bad blood this (property) has had for years,” Smith said.

He anticipates the painting project, at least in terms of the fronts and sides of the buildings, will be completed within the next month. Some areas in the back of the buildings will take a little longer to complete, he said.

“So far what you see for blue paint, we’ve already used 46 gallons of paint on it; I’m expecting it’s gonna take us about 130-140 gallons to finish it,” Smith said. 

“I hope that people enjoy what we’re doing with the property for the most part and that we’re trying to change it,”Smith added. “We’re trying to get a better name for the property than what it once had.”

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