80 Detroit renters to become homeowners thanks to program backed by UCHC and Quicken Loans Community Investment Fund

DETROIT, October 3, 2017 –80 Detroit renters will be given an opportunity to become homeowners and build equity as the city grows, thanks to a partnership between Quicken Loans, the City of Detroit and the United Community Housing Coalition (UCHC). These Detroit homes were withdrawn from the tax foreclosure auction using funds donated by the Quicken Loans Community Investment Fund (QLCIF). The families in these homes were facing displacement and uncertainty because their landlords failed to pay property taxes. This program will offer current rental tenants an opportunity to become homeowners by purchasing their home for between $2,500 and $5,500.

“Keeping long-time residents in their homes is critical for Detroit’s stability and growth,” said Laura Grannemann, VP of Strategic Investments for the Quicken Loans Community Investment Fund. “One step toward that goal is creating pathways to sustainable homeownership and occupancy in order to prevent future blight and build equity in our neighborhoods.”

Quicken Loans Family of Companies is a For-More-Than-Profit enterprise with a passion for investing in people and place to open doors to opportunity for Detroiters. This program is the latest addition to the Family of Companies’ long legacy of supporting solutions to systemic challenges facing Detroit’s neighborhoods, like widespread blight, tax foreclosure, and access to affordable housing.

“This program is another great example of how as our city grows, we, along with our partners in the private sector, are helping families that have faced challenges to stay in their homes,” said Mayor Duggan. “Even better, it’s helping to convert renters into homeowners.”

The purchase price of these homes will be determined according to the value of each home individually. Funds from each sale will then go back to UCHC – at no profit to the organization – and will be slated for future use in direct tax foreclosure outreach initiatives.

“The occupants of these homes were in a precarious situation because their landlords failed to pay property taxes, putting them at risk of eviction after the foreclosure auction,” said Michele Oberholtzer, UCHC Tax Foreclosure Prevention Project Coordinator. “Empowering these tenants to become homeowners achieves two important goals: residents are able to affordably start building equity in their home and neighborhood, and homes remain occupied.”

Since beginning a partnership with the Detroit Blight Removal Task Force in 2013, the QLCIF has zeroed in on tax foreclosure as the number one driver of blight creation.

Program Background

In May 2017, the QLCIF partnered with UCHC to reach out to all occupants of Detroit homes facing tax foreclosure who had not applied for a payment plan with Wayne County. 3,300 occupied homes were reached in total, and 2,100 of those homes were able to avoid tax foreclosure, including 984 owner occupied homes. Each renter within this canvassing effort was then contacted about interest in purchasing their home.

A group of 80 renters emerged as potential homeowners, who met the following requirements:

  • Passed HUD home inspection
  • No outstanding arrest warrants on record
  • Willing and able to assume the cost ($2,500-$5,500) of purchasing the home

This program is part of a wider initiative to ensure that Detroiters have the opportunity to build equity in their neighborhoods. Other work includes:

  • Rehabbed & Ready—Quicken Loans made a $5 million commitment to rehabbing publicly owned homes in partnership with the Detroit Land Bank to boost home values, increase access to financing, and reactivate Detroit homes.
  • Affordability—Bedrock, a full-service commercial real estate firm within the Quicken Loans Family of Companies, signed an agreement with the City of Detroit committing to dedicate 20 percent of its residential portfolio to affordable housing. This agreement includes the development of new housing, as well as preservation of existing affordable units.
  • Blight Removal Taskforce—Dan Gilbert, founder and chairman of Quicken Loans, co-chaired the Blight Removal Taskforce, which brought stakeholders together to provide resources and leadership toward increasing data access regarding blight, advocating for Hardest Hit Funds, and bringing partners together to address blight in our communities.

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About Quicken Loans

Detroit-based Quicken Loans Inc. is the nation’s second largest retail home mortgage lender. The company closed more than $300 billion of mortgage volume across all 50 states between 2013 and 2016. Quicken Loans moved its headquarters to downtown Detroit in 2010, and now more than 17,000 Quicken Loans and its Family of Companies team members work in the city’s urban core. The company generates loan production from web centers located in Detroit, Cleveland and Scottsdale, Arizona. The company also operates a centralized loan processing facility in Detroit, as well as its San Diego-based One Reverse Mortgage unit. Quicken Loans ranked “Highest in Customer Satisfaction for Primary Mortgage Origination” in the United States by J.D. Power for the past seven consecutive years, 2010 – 2016, and highest in customer satisfaction among all mortgage servicers the past three years, 2014 – 2016.

Quicken Loans was ranked #10 on FORTUNE magazine’s annual “100 Best Companies to Work For” list in 2017, and has been among the top-30 companies for the past 14 consecutive years. The company has been recognized as one of Computerworld magazine’s ’100 Best Places to Work in IT’ the past 12 years, ranking #1 for seven of the past eleven years including 2016. The company is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Rock Holdings, Inc., the parent company of several FinTech and related businesses. Quicken Loans is also the flagship business of Dan Gilbert’s Family of Companies comprising nearly 100 affiliated businesses spanning multiple industries. For more information and company news visit QuickenLoans.com/press-room.

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