Mlive Article in Full
Beginning July 1, all rental properties in Grand Rapids will require inspections, a move proponents believe will make rental properties safer and help reduce the growing number of blighted homes, which has exploded since the housing crisis began six years ago. Housing advocates say the city has seen some 3,200 homes converted into rental properties between 2006 and 2009 because of the housing crunch and add there are some 4,000 foreclosed homes now vacant in the city.
“In the end, this is a positive thing for our neighborhoods,” said Tyler Nickerson, affordable housing advocate with the Grand Rapids Area Coalition to End Homelessness. Nickerson conceded the group had hoped to win more frequent certifications for rentals.
Landlords will have the option of applying for four-year or six-year certifications that their properties comply with city housing codes. An earlier version of the ordinance had specified a two-year certification option, which was dropped in a compromise with city landlords, something Nickerson and other housing advocates said they can live with.
Michigan Supreme Court Overturns Appeals Court in MERS Foreclosure Case
Link to Michigan Assoc. of Realtors Announcement
The Michigan Supreme Court has reversed an appeals court ruling that had sent shockwaves throughout the Michigan real estate industry for the last few months. The Michigan Supreme Court said Wednesday that it is legal for Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems to foreclose by advertisement when a loan is defaulted. In a 4-3 decision, the Supreme Court said MERS has a sufficient interest in the debt and, thus, acted properly under Michigan law.
MAR and its membership have been very interested in the outcome of this case ever since the appeals court ruling this past spring. Recognizing the importance of the case to the health of the Michigan’s housing market, MAR’s Legal Action Committee authorized an amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to take up the case for review this summer. Please see the attached Supreme Court Opinion for more details. MAR will be providing more information on this important decision as it becomes available.