(Almost) Free Houses in Detroit

There’s been a lot of news lately about the housing slump — foreclosures are way up, people can’t sell their houses for what they want for them (or at all), it’s harder to get loans, etc. etc.

For the fearless investor who’s on a very (very) long-term schedule, it seems that there’s a big opportunity out there just waiting to be snapped up — yesterday, Mark. J. Perry posted on this on his blog:

You can go to Realtor.com and search for homes for sale in any city in the U.S., and you can specify a certain price range. If you search for homes for sale in Detroit, Michigan, you’ll find that there are 22,387 homes for sale right now, and if you search for Detroit homes for sales between $0 and $20,000, you’ll find that there are 3,431 homes for sale in that price range!

That is, more than 15% of the homes for sale in Detroit, or almost 1 out every 7 homes for sale, is priced at $20,000 or less, including the “Great Investment Property” pictured above, which is listed at a $1,500 sales price (negotiable?) with estimated monthly payments of only “$7 per month.”

[Check out his blog, about Economics and Finance, here]

Simply amazing. I hear that Detroit isn’t such a pleasant place to live these days (big understatement), but what about 20 years from now? If you bought 20 of these houses, at an average of $5,000 each, that’s only about $100,000 — less than you can buy a single house for in most parts of the country. You could buy up a whole section of Detroit and turn it into something better…. although maybe it wouldn’t work that well in Detroit…. perhaps if you bought up a big tract of land and put in, say, an automobile factory????

Here are a couple of screen captures for posterity… (click to zoom in)

detroit listings

detroit listings

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