Detroit Free Press Announces Program to Pair Entrepreneurs with Commercial Property Owner
The Motor City has decided to take back the streets in an effort to stimulate the economy and promote entrepreneurship in the city
Tampa, Florida -It was April Fool’s Day but the announcement made by the Detroit Free Press was no joke. Annual grants of $2 million were pledged in a 5-year program to encourage redevelopment of vacant commercial space across the city.
The Motor City has been all but abandoned by businesses over the last several decades. Efforts to save it have waned as it seemed the rest of the country turned its back. Mayor Mike Duggan did just the opposite. He faced the battle head-on, and even as he swims upstream, he’s kept his campaign promise.
Duggan’s 2013 campaign pledge was to foster growth and jobs in neighborhood storefronts long vacant amid years of business flight from Detroit. For starters, the Motor City Match program will award $500,000 in grants quarterly to building owners and small-business startups.
The program’s aim is to help fund up to 10 new businesses each quarter by offering competitive grants of up to $100,000 to entrepreneurs. The plan is to pair them with building owners in key commercial corridors.
What do real estate professionals think of the idea? Real estate investment trainer Kenny Rushing thinks the idea is brilliant. “Rehabilitating property that has been vacant for years can be very expensive. The Motor City Match program offers a leg up to investors and entrepreneurs who purchase vacant property and need to bring it up to code.”
In addition to the Motor City Match Program, Mayor Duggan also announced a new vacant lot lease program at the national Reclaiming Vacant Lots Conference on May 19th. The program will help put thousands of Detroit’s vacant lots into the hands of local residents by leasing a vacant lot for three years at $25 per year as long as a neighborhood block club approves of the intended use.
The lot lease program follows close behind existing programs that sell side lots to neighboring property owners. In the past year, according to the Detroit Free Press, 320 livable houses previously seized for unpaid taxes have been auctioned by the Detroit Land Bank Authority.
Once seen as a festering sore spot on the southeast side of The Great Lake State, Detroit has captured the attention of urban planners all over the country. What does this mean to real estate investors?
“With more than 1,000 lawsuits filed by the city of Detroit against properties with code violations, we have a good number of motivated sellers,” says Kenny Rushing. “That’s what real estate investors are looking for. Those who have the foresight to see the shift that’s going to happen in Detroit a decade or two down the road stand to benefit considerably as this plan takes shape,” says Kenny Rushing.
To learn more about Real Estate Investing you can click the link below to download Kenny Rushing’s free ebook titled, “How to Buy Vacant Homes from Motivated Sellers at Steep Discounts”.