Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Detroit Couple Finds Their Recently-Purchased Home Reduced To Rubble As County Auctioned Tax-Foreclosed Real Estate To Public Despite Knowing Properties Were Slated For Demo

In Detroit, Michigan, the Motor City Muckraker reports:

  • Artists Kristine Diven and Micho Detronik thought they found the perfect home in Detroit. The fixer-upper was spacious with a second-floor balcony, a new roof and beautiful fireplaces. The east-side house needed a little work – new bathtubs, doors and electrical wiring.

    But less than a month after getting the house at a Wayne County foreclosure auction, the couple were shocked Thursday when they found rubble in the place of their two-story brick house on Berkshire.

    Turns out, the Michigan Land Bank, an economic development engine for the state, has demolished an estimated 20 houses that were purchased at the recent auction. It planned to raze even more.

    Even worse, the Michigan Land Bank and Wayne County Treasurer’s Office knew homes were being auctioned off even though they were slated for demolition, the Motor City Muckraker has discovered.
  • What’s also disturbing about the demolition is the quality of houses that have been razed or are on the demo list. Many are large, gorgeous homes that only need a few repairs.

    With more than 40,000 vacant houses, the city is rife with homes that have been burned or are falling over. It’s unclear why the state would target homes that can be fixed up, rather razing houses that are a danger to the public.

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