Chinese investors start gobbling up cheap Detroit houses

House Sr. Clair & GoetheAs Detroit plunges into bankruptcy, Chinese investors looking for good bargains are lining up to buy cheap houses and other real estate.

Lured by homes selling for as low as $100, investors are beginning to gobble up dozens of properties at one time.

“I have people calling and saying, ‘I’m serious – I wanna buy 100, 200 properties,'” Caroline Chen, a real estate broker, told Quartz.

Much of the hype followed a Chinese report that pointed out that houses in Detroit could be purchased for the price of leather shoes.

So what does this mean for Detroit?

Real estate brokers said most investors don’t plan on moving from China and likely will hold unto the properties until the city sees a resurgence, which raises questions about how they plan to maintain the properties in the meantime.

The city has more than 80,000 vacant houses and other buildings that drive down property values, attract arsonists and provide cover for criminals.

Click here to see a photo gallery of Detroit’s cheap abandoned houses.

Steve Neavling

Steve Neavling lives and works in Detroit as an investigative journalist. His stories have uncovered corruption, led to arrests and reforms and prompted FBI investigations.