The Facts

  1. From 2011-2015, 1 in 4 Detroit properties were foreclosed upon.
  2. The Michigan Constitution states that no property shall be assessed at more than 50% of its market value.
  3. Between 2009-2015, 55-85% of Detroit properties were assessed in violation of the Michigan Constitution.
  4. The lowest valued homes (bottom fifth) were assessed at levels, on average, 18 times the constitutional limit.
  5. The highest valued homes (top fifth) were assessed, on average, below the constitutional limit.

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The Facts

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The Michigan Constitution states that no property may be assessed at more than 50% of its market value. However, 55 – 85% of properties were assessed at a rate in violation of the Constitution from 2009-2015. Detroit residents can appeal a property assessment to the Board of Assessors Review, but the period for appeal is only February 1 – February 15, a very short time frame.

HPTAP / Poverty Tax Exemption

Are your property taxes unaffordable? You may qualify for help.

What is the Homeowners Property Tax Assistance Program?

The Homeowner’s Property Tax Assistance Program (HPTAP) lowers City of Detroit property taxes for homeowners with low incomes.

The program only lowers taxes for the year you apply. Apply every year to have your taxes lowered for that year.

This program does not help with back taxes to the Wayne County Treasurer. But by lowering this year’s tax bill, it can make back taxes easier to pay off.


Text 85274 or call 211 for a list of organizations in your neighborhood that provide free assistance for filling out an HPTAP application.

Community Legal Workers

DJC’s Community Legal Workers will assist community members in preparing their appeals, accompany clients to the Board, and provide guidance throughout the process. Community Legal Workers are trained community members who will help Detroit residents understand, use, and shape the laws around property tax assessments in Detroit. Instead of turning to traditional lawyers, Detroit Justice Center places the law in the hands of the people to empower them to solve justice problems on their own. DJC has trained five Community Legal Workers who are now prepared to advise clients on the legal process and navigate government systems.

Learn more at DJC

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About Us

Founded in 2017, The Coalition to End Unconstitutional Tax Foreclosures was created by individuals from several long-standing grassroots organizations to fight for those who have lost their homes, or are at risk of losing their homes, due to unconstitutional tax foreclosures in Detroit.

The Coalition's purpose is to address the illegality and severity of the property tax foreclosure crisis. With our collective power, we've set out to accomplish three goals:

  1. To stop unconstitutional property tax assessments
  2. To compensate Detroit residents who have already lost their homes through illegal tax foreclosures
  3. To suspend pending property tax foreclosures until it is confirmed that the delinquent taxpayers were not unconstitutionally assessed.

Since the Coalition’s inception, we’ve accomplished an impressive amount of work toward reaching these three goals. From starting an unprecedented Dignity Restoration Housing Program, to shaping the settlement of a groundbreaking lawsuit, to building an interfaith education program — our member organizations haven’t stopped fighting for the rights of Detroit’s working families.

As proud as we are of our accomplishments thus far, we have so much more to do, and we can't do it alone.

Please contact us if you would like to:

  1. Become an annual donor
  2. Become a media partner
  3. Join the coalition as a volunteer

We appreciate your support as we work to stop unconstitutional property tax foreclosures in Detroit.

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© 2019, The Coalition to End Unconstitutional Property Tax Foreclosures

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