Galloway and Collens, PLLC

Real estate purchases and sales: Michigan landmark up for auction

When it comes to purchases and sales of Detroit area real estate, there is one historic building that numerous people have admired -- and it used to be the headquarters of the Detroit Club. Built in 1892, the four-story building is made of red brick and stone and it was recently scheduled for auction. The building was constructed for the exclusive purpose of being the historic Detroit Club's home and it served as its clubhouse from the day it opened until it was sold in 2013.

The current owner of the building is no stranger to purchases and sales of real estate for investment purposes. The real estate investor purchased the building at a price of $1 million late last year. In preparation to sell the property at auction, it has been renovated. New bathroom fixtures and flooring were installed and the club's ornate woodwork was refinished.

Bidding on the property was set to start at $950,000. However, the auction has an undisclosed reserve price that bidders must meet in order to buy the property. As is common with many real estate auctions, the winning bidder only receives the building; however, a representative of the agent said that the club's furniture could be purchased if a reasonable offer is made.

Ever since the historic building was sold, the Detroit Club has been embroiled in a legal battle with the investor who bought the property. The dispute relates to various pieces of property, including a stuffed Elk, a collection of rare books and other items.

In order to avoid the potential for disputes later on down the road, it is important for investors to ensure that contracts relating to any purchases and sales are straightforward and clear. Fortunately, legal counsel specializing in real estate transactions will typically know what to look for in order ensure all parties are treated fairly in the transaction.

Source:, "Once-elite Detroit Club heads to public auction under a cloud" JC Reindl, Jul. 27, 2014

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