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Forclosure Hell: Houses Selling For $1.

Sure, it needs a little work…and it is in Detroit. But when it last sold for $65,000 a few years ago, it was the nicest house on the block. But now, it has just been sold for $1.00. Yes, you read that right – One Dollar.


So desperate was the bank owner of 8111 Traverse Street to unload the property that it agreed to pay $2,500 in sales commission and another $1,000 bonus for closing the $1 sale; the bank also will pay $500 of the buyer’s closing costs. Throw in back taxes and a water bill, and unloading the house will cost the bank about $10,000.

“It doesn’t make sense in some neighborhoods to keep paying costs and costs,” Colpaert said. “It can make more financial sense to give it away.”


You couldn’t pay me to live there, but even in the worst of neighborhoods, a house for $1.00 WAS unheard of…until now.


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Comments (12)

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  1. Dani says:

    $1 houses aren’t all that new (in this area, at least). About a decade or so ago, the City of Allentown (one of the larger cities in PA) was selling houses in the downtown area for $1 as part of their revitalization program. It came with strings attached — you had a certain amount of time to spruce them up, convert them into single-family dwellings from apartments, etc. — but it was an honest-to-goodness $1 sale.

    It didn’t work, unfortunately. That area is worse now than it was then…but it was a cool idea.

  2. david says:

    Interesting Dani, thanks for letting me know it happens elsewhere as well!

  3. One dollar homes are brutal and that’s got to have a huge impact on that neighborhood and local businesses. I wonder how the local government will be impacted by the loss of property tax revenue. Even if it gets paid, how will they assess the home value for 2009 property taxes? Couldn’t be just a buck, could it?

  4. david says:

    Well, they could not be any worse off than when no one owned it, so maybe it will stay really low for a while?

  5. […] of My Two Dollars reports that houses are actually selling for $1 because banks (who foreclosed and are now stuck with the house) are so desperate to get rid of […]

  6. Moolah says:

    One dollar homes, that’s almost as crazy as what I saw in DC. They were having buy one, get the next one free condos. Grant it these condos were located in bad neighborhoods but I can’t believe the housing would get this bad.

  7. I can’t believe this – it just wouldn’t happen in the UK. I take it the bank are just writing off the debt secured against the house?

    Secondly, why do the bank not just rent the property out?

  8. Erik says:

    In comment to Scott. Most homes in urban Detroit are empty, and have been in some cases since the 1970’s. Detroit is in such poor shape most if not all of urban Detroit has no trash pickup, among other services offered. It is not like it is really worse off for the hose to be sold for $1 than it is in its present state no?

  9. […] in recreational habits 19 Change in church activities 19 Change in social activities 18 Mortgage or loan under $10,000 17 Change in sleeping habits 16 Change in number of family gatherings 15 Change in eating habits 15 […]

  10. Ed says:

    Stuff like that is happening more often these days. In some of the rough neighbor hoods close to where I live the banks can’t sell the property and you can buy the entire property for a few dollars. The only bad thing about it is the properties need a ton of work, and can sometimes be very dangerous to go into these neighbor hoods to do the repair work.

  11. Catherine Guilley says:

    Are we awake out there? They need to offer all excess property for a dollar, no matter where they are located. Use the same guidelines as the Homestead Act. Must live in it, must improve it, and cannot sell it for at least 15yrs. That would allow people who seriously want a home to get one. Stimulate the economy by paying taxes and purchasing materials to renovate. The 15yr stay on selling the property would discourage people who just want to make a fast buck. It was this insatiable greed that got us in this mess in the first place, and only some good old fashioned commonsense is going to get us out of it.

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