Urealdene Henderson won home back

After Metro Property threatened, demanded huge payment

Ms. Henderson had lived in her Detroit home for 36 years. She worked at Great Lakes Steel as a member of the Steelworkers union for 34 years, but after being diagnosed with cancer she was off work for three years.  She returned to work in 2009, only to be laid off, and got behind on her property taxes.  She now is retired on disability.

Ms. Henderson had a deal with the Wayne County Treasurer to pay $2,100 to prevent tax foreclosure.  Through no fault of her own, her payment arrived  three days late — and the Treasurer had already sold her home to Metro Property Management for $7,000.

Forty people picketed Metro Properties.

Ms. Henderson contacted Metro and offered $10,000 to buy back her home.  But Metro demanded $52,000.  Metro later said they wouldn’t sell, and wanted to rent her the home for $1,000 a month.

Metro put notices on Ms. Henderson’s door to try to frighten her into moving.  One said: “This property is illegally occupied by a SQUATTER.” In March of 2014, a judge told the company such threats are wrong. After our public outcry shot holes in the public image Metro has been trying to project, it finally backed down and sold her the home at the price she had offered.

Urealdene Henderson (left), along with Mr. & Ms. Cruz Valdez and Kyley Givens display titles to the homes they fought to keep.