Detroit. One House at a Time | Episode 2: Empty Houses
Soon after setting foot in the front door, the Polks decided that this house would become their forever home. As family friend Jamal Johnson recalls their first visit, “We didn’t even make it upstairs, and I said, ‘This is the one.'”
This Russell Woods-area home is one of several options the Polks had to choose from. A 2016 report showed that Detroit had 52,947 vacant properties at the time, which equates to nearly one in five houses. That’s a lot to comb through when you’re looking for a place to call home, but the Polks are certain that’s what they have.
The Detroit Land Bank auctions homes to Detroit families (the median price for the 926 homes auctioned so far is $3,700). The Polks’ home came with roof damage and missing copper plumbing – fairly common problems with these houses that were largely abandoned during the housing market crash a decade ago–but also had lots of fixer-upper potential.
Don’t forget to tune in for the full renovation! TOH Detroit starts airing March 30th on PBS. Check local listings.
- Have you seen all of our Web series episodes? Watch the rest of “Detroit. One House at a Time”