Detroit tries unconventional approach to restoring its housing market

DETROIT — For Jazley Trouser, a 25-year-old Home Depot worker who has endured her share of hard times, the opportunity to become a homeowner was too good to pass up.

With a $1,000 bid on the city’s online auction site, Trouser bought a four-bedroom Tudor plundered by thieves. A $25,000 grant from a community bank covered her renovation costs. Now she owns the 1929 home, restored to its former glory, mortgage free.

“I love that this is my home,” Trouser said. “I’m creating a home for myself with longevity.”

Wooing atypical buyers such as Trouser is one component of a bold new experiment designed to address a six-decades-long exodus of 1 million people who left this once-mighty city with vast swaths of decaying houses and weed-choked lots.

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