Detroit Swag-o-mania

A silhouetted bronze sculpture of Poseidon frames the illuminated main entrance to the Detroit Institute of Arts during Detroit's annual Delectricity festival of lights. Stretching along Woodward Avenue through the heart of Detroit's Cultural Center the celebration is a growing and popular two-night event.

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DISCUSSING ALL THINGS DETROIT-WINDSOR SINCE 1999

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  1. #1
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    Apr 2009
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    Default Who wants a free house in Detroit?

    Seriously. I have a friend looking to give away two houses in Detroit. Yes, I said give away.

    They are currently occupied by tenants (who don't pay a heck of a lot). He is just tired of taking care of them, and they cost $3000/year in taxes and insurance. They are on Dacosta in Brightmoor. They are in OK shape. Not the Taj Mahal, but have everything working and in decent condition.

    What do you do with a house that no one wants to keep anymore, but can't sell? He wonders if you can donate them to a non-profit and get a tax write-off. Any ideas? He doesn't want to walk away, evict the tenants, and let the scavengers come.

  2. #2
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    Nov 2010
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    Default

    Has he tried offering them to the tenants?

  3. #3
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    Apr 2010
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    Default

    I'd be very interested in taking one over and fixing it up.

  4. #4
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by detroiturbex View Post
    I'd be very interested in taking one over and fixing it up.
    What areas are they in?

  5. #5
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    Jun 2010
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    Default

    I wonder if some organization that takes donated cars would do this?

  6. #6
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    Nov 2009
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Augustiner View Post
    Has he tried offering them to the tenants?
    My dad did that when he moved away. He sold them to them.

  7. #7
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    Nov 2010
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DetroitDad View Post
    What areas are they in?
    If you have questions about a post, it sometimes helps to read it through from start to finish.

  8. #8
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    Mar 2009
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    Default

    If not the tenants, Blight Busters is in the neighborhood. Mr George is fairly regular at monthly meetings at the Rosedale / Grandmont Developement Center, located on Grand River and the NW corner of Plainview (one block east of Evergreen next to auto zone).

  9. #9
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    Default

    We went from buying a home for a buck to who wants a free house in Detroit. This is indeed a sad time for Detroit.

  10. #10
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    Apr 2009
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    Default

    True that, R8RBOB.

    He offered it to the tenants, but they aren't in any shape to do the maintenance. For example, what happens when something like a furnace needs to be replaced? They barely make the rent of $350/mo, and sometimes don't pay it at all. He's a softie, so he lets it go. He'd rather just get them off his books and say goodbye.

    DetroitDad, if you read my original post in it's entirety, you can even get the street name.

    UrbEx- I will keep you in mind if we cannot find a charity.

  11. #11
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    Jul 2009
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    Default

    maybe one of the tenants can tip a candle over "accidently"........

  12. #12
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    Mar 2010
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    Default

    I dunno. Sounds weird. Back taxes? Back water bills?

  13. #13
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    $3000 a year for taxes and it brings in $350 a month in rent. By my math that leaves yearly profit of $1200 if you don't have any expenses with fixing things. I can see why your friend wants to unload these money pits.

  14. #14
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    Really, no back taxes or water bills. He is completely responsible, which is why he doesn't want to commit fraud and have a tenant 'knock a candle over" lol.

    Detroitej1792, was that sarcasm? Because you just proved my point. $1200/year, to maintain the houses, is nothing. The labor of having to visit the houses all the time to repair minor things isn't worth it to him.

    Heck, his time, gas money he spends commuting in his truck, going to home depot, making plumbing repairs, doing landscaping, etc. He's breaking even, if not losing money, after putting all that effort in.

    It'd be best if it was owned by someone who lived in it. Which is better for a neighborhood anyway.

    So, any charities that might take a house? Like a veteran's organization?

  15. #15
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    Default

    Oh, also Detroitej72- did you see what I wrote about them sometimes not paying rent at all?

  16. #16
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    Yeah, I was being funny, but I also understand why he'd want to unload them as soon as possible, since it's quite possible the homes may be costing him money. Hopefully he can find some charity to donate them to and at least get a tax write-off.

  17. #17
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    Jun 2009
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    Default

    Contact Bob Miller, the deputy supervisor in Redford Township. He used to run, and may still, a nonprofit organization that accepted Detroit homes as charitable donations.

  18. #18
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    Feb 2010
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    Default

    Three thousand a year for taxes? To live in Detroit? Are they out of their freaking minds? No wonder the city is so vacant. Certainly the suburbs are cheaper. I moved to Pennsylvania and the burb I live in taxes my home at around $2000 per year. And we don't have one vacant home in the area.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaumVogel View Post
    Three thousand a year for taxes? To live in Detroit? Are they out of their freaking minds? No wonder the city is so vacant. Certainly the suburbs are cheaper. I moved to Pennsylvania and the burb I live in taxes my home at around $2000 per year. And we don't have one vacant home in the area.
    It would play hell with places like Detroit (and just about any city with financial problems these days) but I would sure support a US constitutional amendment (or law) which provided a "challenge" provision for property taxation. If a political entity assessed a value for ad valorem taxation, the owner could "challenge" it. If the entity refused to change the valuation, the property owner could demand the taxing authority to purchase the property at the valuation.

  20. #20
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    Jul 2009
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    Sorry, but you couldn't pay me to live on DaCosta. That area was total trash back in the 80s and 90s. I can't imagine what it's like now.

    I wouldn't be totally opposed to moving back to town, but country life spoiled me as far as having neighbors 20' away. If I did it, I'd want to be in one of those areas where there were only one or two houses on a block and where I owned the rest of the property so no one else could build.

    But $3K in taxes on a house worth less than $30.00 (yup, a ten and a twenty) doesn't make sense. I can't imagine what the city would want in taxes for 8 or 10 vacant lots strung together.

  21. #21
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    Mar 2009
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    REL: I have someone who is interested in obtaining both houses. Please e-mail me the contact info (yours or the owner's) to corneroffice2 at aol dot com.

  22. #22
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    There's always the local CDC: Northwest Detroit Neighborhood Development. They already own a number of homes on that street.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaumVogel View Post
    Three thousand a year for taxes? To live in Detroit? Are they out of their freaking minds? No wonder the city is so vacant. Certainly the suburbs are cheaper. I moved to Pennsylvania and the burb I live in taxes my home at around $2000 per year. And we don't have one vacant home in the area.
    $3000 is not very much. Washtenaw County taxes are a lot higher.

  24. #24
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    ^^ My current taxes are about $300 on about 6 acres with a better house than you would find in Brightmoor.

    Three grand is extremely high.

  25. #25
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    $3000 for a mean little building in a mean neighborhhod is a lot. A guy on my street pays about $3000 (he stopped paying in 2008) for a little clapboard house with a postage stamp lot, no basement. In the best of times he could only have gotten about $10,000 for it - so outdated it is. Built probably 1910 and a has no charm, no updates. $3000 in annual taxes is a so unreasonable that he just stopped paying.

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