Businessman John Page withdraws his online bid for 6,000 distressed Detroit homes, but may end up buying around 1,000, if they go to the Land Bank
Just weeks after a buyer bid US$3.2million for 6,000 foreclosed Detroit homes, the deal has fallen through.
The sole bidder in the online auction for the ‘blight bundle’ of around 3,000 properties due to be torn down, 2,000 empty lots and 1,000 homes in the Wayne County, Detroit, was local businessman, John Page.
He planned to work with Detroit businessman Herb Strather over the next five years to develop the homes that could be saved and demolish the dangerous ones.
Now Mr Page, owner of Eco-Solutions, says the deal collapsed because Detroit wants to control the properties, but he may still end up buying around 1,000 of the homes, the Detroit News reports.
Wayne County treasury officials announced earlier that Mr Page had withdrawn his US$3,183,000 bid, in part because they would not agree to use federal money to demolish the homes, which some estimates put at up to US$24million.
County Treasurer Raymond Wojtowicz says, “While we were not able to reach agreement as to a development agreement, we do look forward to continued participation by Eco-Solutions as we work with Mayor Duggan to address blight in our neighborhoods.”
The homes are now expected to be offered to the city and go back in the Detroit Land Bank to be demolished or resold.
Mr Page says he and Mr Strather still want to work with the land bank to buy around 1,000 properties, particularly in the Grand River and Greenfield areas.
As OPP Connect reported previously, the homes, which were foreclosed by the Wayne County Treasurer for non-payment of property taxes, were sold as-is and the winner was required to demolish the rundown buildings within six months.
At one time, some dilapidated Detroit properties were marketed for just US$1, attracting strong interest from overseas property buyers from China and around the world.
Wayne County is aiming to take possession of every property that is three or more years behind in taxes and is notifying 80,000 property owners that they are on the verge of losing their homes to foreclosure due to delinquent taxes. That equates to one of every five properties in Detroit.
Wayne County is the most populous county in the state of Michigan, with 1.8million people, according to the 2010 census, placing it 17th in the United States.
By Adrian Bishop, Editor, OPP Connect