Detroit (CBS Detroit) — For the first time, a home has sold for over $100,000 at auction in what was a milestone for Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan and his citywide fight against blight. Duggan said the bidding — for a home on Chicago Boulevard in the Boston-Edison District — actually surpassed $125,000.
The auction program is part of Duggan’s “Building Detroit” program, a strategy to eliminate blight in the city of Detroit and the mayor stressed that the auction program has been a huge success from the start.
“I believed all along that the vacant houses in Detroit don’t have to be demolished and that they have value,” Duggan said. “We decided to try to prove that.
“We auctioned a house on the East Side that went for $5,600 today — a very small house — and we auctioned a house in Boston-Edison that was over $125,000. So we’re trying to put options in the range of everybody.”
The home on Chicago Boulevard is a 3,000 square-foot brick colonial home with four bedrooms, four baths and several fireplaces with a winning bid of $135,000.
“This house is beautiful and didn’t need nearly as much work as some of the others,” Duggan said. “Although, we’ve had houses go in the range of $70,000 and $80,000, but we have some houses that maybe go for $40,000 and they’ve got to put $60,000 into them and this was probably one of the ones that was in the best condition of all of them.”
The new owner has to have the house fixed up and occupied within six months.
In April, Duggan announced that foreclosed and abandoned homes in Detroit would be put up for auction on a new website, BuildingDetroit.org, which aimed to cut down on the number of properties which were demolished in the city by instead selling them to owners who would vow to renovate the houses.