Detroit Land Bank mistakenly orders tenants to move out

Tenants living in a home on Chatsworth Street in Detroit got a scare on Tuesday when the Detroit Land Bank Authority posted a notice on their door.

"They put the ticket on the door yesterday," one of the tenants said.

The renters, who do not speak English well, were interviewed by FOX 2 through a translation app. The ticket placed on their door says the land bank owns their house. 

"They called me crying yesterday, saying what happened Gaston? We pay your rent, we pay our security deposit, and there's two guys telling me that we need to get out of here now," said the owner of the house, Gaston Munoz.

However, it was all an error. 

"I drove as fast as I could to make it here to see – no, this is a mistake," Munoz said. "Everything was right."

Munoz bought the property for $30,000 in March 2021, from a person who bought it from the land bank, he said. He put about $70,000 into renovating the house. 

The problem is, Munoz's purchase of the property from the previous owner violated the terms of what the land bank wanted.

A lawsuit ensued, and then a settlement was reached – where the Detroit Land Bank signed a quit claim deed, giving ownership to Munoz in March 2024. 

In a statement to FOX 2, the land bank said the notice was posted "in error."

"A spokesperson from the DLBA acknowledged the error in posting the notice on this property," according to the statement. "The DLBA will not be taking any action against the property or its occupants."