Detroit Home Auctions, Starting at Just $1,000, Begin in May

Tuesday, 15 Apr 2014 04:06 PM

By Angela Deines

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Auctions of homes that belong to the City of Detroit will begin in just a few weeks and prices start at just $1,000.

“We’re laying another huge piece in place in Detroit’s strategy to fight blight,” Mayor Mike Duggan said at a news conference Monday, The Detroit News reported. “It is not enough to just demolish. We have a lot of great houses in this city that I believe can be occupied. These are beautiful homes, and we’re going to see how many people believe in the city and want to come in and take these homes.”

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Twelve homes are currently listed for sale on the www.buildingdetroit.org website through the Detroit Land Bank Authority.

The first buyer requirement is that the bidder must be a resident of Michigan or a company or organization authorized to do business in Michigan. Another stipulation is that the owner can’t have lost property due to owing back taxes in Wayne County in the past three years.

Beginning May 5, the city will begin auctioning the homes at one per day starting at $1,000.

The buyer has 72 hours to pay 10 percent of the purchase price and if the house is bought for $20,000 or less, the owner has 60 days to close on the property. It's 90 days if the purchase price is more than $20,000. Failure to bring the property up to code in six months can result in forfeiture of the home.

Duggan said he doesn’t want the houses to fall into the hands of developers, saying past tax auctions have been bad for the city. He recently announced a program aimed at using federal funds to notify homeowners they may face legal action if they don’t fix up their homes. The program is modeled after a similar program Duggan ran when he was the Wayne County prosecutor more than 10 years ago in which 1,000 abandoned homes were improved.

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