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Survey of Detroit Mortgages Show Quicken Loans Contributed To Detroit’s Blight

Dan Gilbert
Dan Gilbert, owner of Quicken Loans

It appears Quicken Loans owner and wannabe White Jesus of Detroit contributed to Detroit’s epic blight problem. Gilbert is not totally responsible for the blight. Bank of America, Wells Fargo, and others also share a greater responsibility. Yet Gilbert did contribute to the blight that he and Quicken Loans have now pledged to eliminate.

First of all, let’s go back in time to 2007. Dan Gilbert, proclaimed to Tom Walsh at the Detroit News, “Quicken and Rock have never made subprime loans to home buyers” 

Investigative journalist Michael Hudson debunked this claim by Gilbert. 

An Ohio court awarded a $3 million verdict to former Quicken Loans customers. The homeowners were victims of predatory lending in 2011. A West Virginia judge also awarded the homeowners $2 million. The court ruled Quicken used fraudulent appraisals in order lend homeowners more money. The judge in the case even went so far to call Quicken’s actions, “unconscionable.” 

Dan Gilbert still proclaimed, “Quicken to be “one of the good guys.” 

Quicken Loans was able to escape the carnage of the financial crisis. That part is true but it wasn’t because Quicken was one of the good guys. It was because Quicken didn’t carry any liability from the loans they originated. Gilbert’s company sold the loans on the secondary mortgage market within weeks of originating them. 

Gilbert The Messiah

Gilbert made a pledge to Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan last year to assist Detroit in tearing down blighted residential properties. As a result, Duggan appointed him as head of the Detroit Blight Removal Task Force. Consequently, everyone in Detroit media praised Gilbert and treated him as a White Jesus. The messiah who had come to rescue Detroit. What they weren’t asking was, “Did any of these homes have mortgages originated by Quicken Loans?

After losing several predatory lending lawsuits this should be the foremost question Detroit media should be asking. Gilbert’s past as an amateur bookie should also be a red flag. 

I began asking friends in Detroit media why no one asking this question. The reaction was shocking. It was a look of terror like they would be sent to a communist labor camp if they spoke. It was similar to the look I used to get from Chinese exchange students in college who were being monitored by the Chinese Ministry of State Security.

MFI-Miami Goes Digging

It’s obvious Detroit media are intimidated by the ominous eye of Dan Gilbert. So I had MFI-Miami staff spent a day at the Wayne County Register of Deeds. I had them look through mortgage filings in the city of Detroit that listed Quicken Loans or Rock Financial as the original mortgagee from 2003 to September of 2008.

What we found will be surprisingly shocking to people in Detroit. The same people who think Dan Gilbert is a the second coming of Jesus. 

MFI-Miami sampled 75 homes that had Quicken Loans or Rock Financial named as the original mortgagee. Of the mortgages sampled 70.6% of these properties went into foreclosure. They went into foreclosure within the first 24-36  months of being sold on the secondary housing market. Quicken Loans sold the majority of these loans to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Quicken sold the rest to private mortgage-backed securities trusts on Wall Street.