Wall St. Journal's 2015 House of the Year cost $1


The Wall Street Journal's 2015 House of the Year cost $1.

The Queen Anne-style Lamb Manor was built in Palmetto, Florida, for the town founder's son Asa Lamb in 1910. Nearly a century later, it was dilapidated and facing a condo developer's wrecking ball when restorers George and Nancy Corbett stepped in.

The developer gave it to them for a buck, and they had it ferried across Tampa Bay in 2006 — at a cost of a quarter-million dollars — to land they owned on the Little Manatee River in Ruskin, Florida.

They spent more than seven years and $2 million on the property. They added a full floor to the house, bringing it to about 7,000 square feet, and added a birdcage-style elevator and antiques. They dug a lagoon on the property, too, at a cost of about $100,000.


Along with a three-unit guesthouse, the estate totals nearly 9,000 square feet, with seven bedrooms, seven bathrooms and five kitchens.

The Corbetts listed the estate in February 2014 for $5 million, but they wound up selling it for closer to the dollar they originally paid for it: A fellow evangelical Christian couple bought it in November for $1,150,000.

Far from minding, Nancy Corbett considers it "really close to a miracle" to have found the buyers, who, like the Corbetts, are running the estate as a Christian retreat.

And the couples stay in touch. "We feel like a team," Corbett told the Journal.

Click here or on the image below for a slideshow of Lamb Manor, bought for a dollar in 2006 and lavishly restored: