North Carolina, Kinston, comdemnation, Black homes

Study: Detroit’s Black Homeowner Values Increased By Nearly $3 Billion

Black homeowners in Detroit saw the value of their homes increase by $2.8 billion from 2014 to 2022, according to a new study.

According to a recent study by the University of Michigan Poverty Solutions, Black homeowners in Detroit saw the value of their homes increase by $2.8 billion from 2014-2022. These numbers drove the city’s overall increase in the overall value of owner-occupied homes from $4.2 billion in 2014 to $8.1 billion in 2022, a 94% increase. 

While the report’s numbers are positive in the context of Detroit’s recovery from its 2014 bankruptcy, the conclusion does caution that the increase in home values could prove problematic for renters and the potential for some homeowners to get priced out of neighborhoods. 

“This growth in housing wealth reflects positively on the efforts of multiple stakeholders to improve Detroit’s housing market and strengthen its neighborhoods since the bankruptcy, including initiatives to remove blight and rehabilitate distressed properties,” the report reads. “At the same time, many challenges remain, and more work needs to be done to boost homeownership demand and make neighborhoods more attractive locations for potential homebuyers.”

The report also notes that it is working with some limitations and assumptions due to the data that is available, but even so the report could be understating how much wealth has been created for homeowners through the rising values of their homes.

In a press conference, Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan praised the resilience of the residents who stayed.

“For decades, Detroit’s homeowners saw their family wealth evaporate as home values declined,” Duggan said, according to the Associated Press. “Now, those who stayed, most notably Black homeowners, have gained nearly $3 billion in new generational wealth because of our city’s neighborhoods comeback.” 

Duggan continued, “When I got sworn in 10 years ago there were 1,000 people a month leaving this city. People were bailing out on Detroit right and left. Those who stayed are $4 billion better off because they bet on the city of Detroit.”

Ken Scott, a former President of the Detroit Realtist Association and Detroit Association of Realtors as well as a HUD certified housing counselor, said in a press release that the study aligns with what has been discussed by Detroit’s realtors during the past few years. 

“There has been a huge shift for the better in Detroit’s home values, driven largely by the improvements being made in neighborhoods…Black owned homes are rising in value and Black families are gaining the most family wealth,” Scott said. “And while home values have risen dramatically, there is a lot of growth yet to come. Detroit homes are beautiful and dollar-for-dollar still a great value.”

Melvin Chuney, a Black homeowner, said at the press conference that he sees the turnaround.

“It’s amazing and it’s real,” Chuney said. “It’s way more valuable than 10 years ago. People are fighting to get into this neighborhood that people were walking away from just a few years ago.”