Best Deed Types in Detroit, Michigan for Low-Value Residential Lots

I find myself about to take ownership of several cheap vacant residential lots in Detroit. Wasn’t really looking to buy them but they come as part of a deal I’m doing. I don’t think they are especially sell-able, and a quick zillow scan puts the market price somewhere between zero and “you pay me to take them off your hands”.

My question: what deed type(s) in Michigan are best, without the expense of having title insurance?


@scottbraden warranty deeds are what you want, if you take title at all. Detroit is actually pretty decent in the downtown area. I was walking through the center of town about a month ago and I was shocked at how good everything looked. It has improved a lot over the past ten years, but there are still plenty of rough areas to avoid.

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@retipsterseth right I know that… but the thing is a warranty deed costs $ at at title company, and the lots are not even worth that cost.

So if I take quitclaim deeds, yes a future buyer will have to pay more for a clear title but what are my other options?

I suppose I could just quitclaim them back to the county, so at least I don’t have to pay the taxes on lots I’ll never get value for?

@scottbraden if these properties are truly worthless and you can’t do anything with them, then it doesn’t really matter what kind of deed you get. Quit claim deeds are fine. Just don’t pay the taxes and let the county seize them after two years of delinquency (or better yet, tell the seller to just not pay the taxes, and the county will seize the properties from them instead of you).

Some sellers have the misunderstanding that if the county seizes the properties from them in tax foreclosure, it will somehow hurt their credit score, but it won’t. You can explain to them that a county seizure won’t reflect negatively on them because the county doesn’t have their SSN. It doesn’t work that way.

If the seller still doesn’t get it, and they still want to dump these properties on you, you could take the properties off their hands. Just make sure you’re also getting some other properties that make it worth your while to deal with the annoyance of getting late tax notifications in the mail while you’re waiting for the county to take them back).

@retipsterseth thanks, that’s about where I was with these.