Just, Jesus Christ.
We all know tax foreclosures are a problem in Detroit, but this map from Loveland Technologies really puts the horror of the situation into perspective. Shown are all of the properties that have been foreclosed and sold at auction in the city over the past 15 years.
Michigan law allows for the foreclosure and seizure of properties with three or more years of back taxes. The properties then get sold at auction to try to recoup some money lost. People then get displaced. The houses they lived in then sometimes go vacant
. Vacancy leads to blight. Blight leads to depressed property values. You see the problem.
Wayne County has foreclosed on more than 160,00 properties since 2002, with the bulk of them in Detroit. You can examine the map showing these properties more closely here
You can learn about Loveland CEO Jerry Paffendorf's plan to address the problem here
. You can read about how Wayne County uses extra money made off the system here
. You can read about how the county's treasurer says that, despite that, he's working to address the problem here
. You can read about how the tax foreclosures could be unconstitutional because they're based on faulty property value assessments here
. And you can read about how renters have been royally screwed by unscrupulous landlords who've gamed the system here
. (It’s important to note that a survey last year found nearly half
of the people who lived in homes slated for foreclosure were renters, meaning they were likely not responsible for paying property taxes in the first place.)