Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Featured Place to Live: 6873 Grandville Ave.

6873 Grandville Ave. - Image from Google Streetview
For those looking for a great investment property, 6873 Grandville Ave. represents a unique opportunity in that it is a turn-key operation in one of the stronger neighborhoods of Detroit. This home already has a reliable tenant in place. All the new landlord will need to do is collect the rent.

This historic American Foursquare home was built in 1926. It features three bedrooms and one bathroom in 1,254 square feet of living space. It also has a full basement.

The asking price for this home is only $29,000, which makes it a great bargain. The house is represented by REMAX Drive in Livonia. Additional details about this opportunity are available by clicking here.

6873 Grandville Ave. is your Featured Place to Live in Detroit's Warrendale neighborhood for this week.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Warrendale Goes to Pecha Kucha Night

Illustration by Raja R.
I will present my plan for rehabbing vacant homes in Warrendale at Pecha Kucha Night, Volume 15. This event will happen at One-Eyed Betty's in Ferndale on Tuesday, May 21. The event will start at 6 p.m. with drinks and networking. The presentations will start promptly at 8:20 p.m.

Pecha Kucha Night is a quarterly series that allows creative professionals to showcase their work in a fast-paced, engaging format. Presenters show 20 slides of their work for 20 seconds each and discuss them.

The concept started in Tokyo in 2003 ("pecha kucha" means "the sound of conversation in Japanese"). Detroit is one of 643 cities around the world that host a Pecha Kucha Night.

One-Eyed Betty's is located at 175 W. Troy Avenue in Ferndale, which is near 9 Mile Rd. and Woodward Avenue.

The Infatuations Rock Hard Rock Cafe

Chris Polite, and nephew Tyler, Perform at Hard Rock Cafe
Photo by Frank Nemecek
Chris Polite, a lifelong resident of the Warrendale neighborhood in Detroit, performed with his band, The Infatuations, yesterday at Hard Rock Cafe. Chris's nephew Tyler, who also lives in Warrendale, even joined them on stage at one point. Their performance was part of the Hard Rock Rising contest.

More than 12,000 bands from around the world entered the Hard Rock Rising contest. After several rounds of voting, The Infatuations are one of only 96 bands that are still in the competition. If they finish in the top 25 when on-line voting ends tomorrow at midnight, they will go on a world tour and possibly win a recording contract.

If you have a Facebook account, you can help The Infatuations by voting for them in the Hard Rock Rising contest. All you have to do is click here, scroll down to where you see them listed, and then click on "vote." You will also be able to download their single "Dancing on My Knees" for free.

Supporting a fellow Warrendale resident and collecting free music in the process is your Tip of the Week.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Featured Place to Live: 6719 Auburn St.

6719 Auburn St. - Image from Google Streetview
For those seeking a solid investment opportunity, 6719 Auburn St. represents just such a real estate option in the Warrendale neighborhood. This historic three bedroom bungalow, originally built in 1952, is on the market for only $32,900. It is a turn-key operation with an existing tenant already in place.

This charming home sits on a 4,356 square foot lot. Like most homes in Warrendale, it features a one car detached garage at the rear of this property.

The buyer of this investment property should contact the City of Detroit before closing to order an inspection of the home. The seller has agreed to bring the home up to code as part of the sale.

This home is represented by REMAX Drive in Livonia. Additional information about this and other homes in the available is available here.

6719 Auburn St. is your Featured Place to Live in the Warrendale neighborhood of Detroit for this week. Please check back next week for another great residential option.

Ken Cockrel Will Not Run for Re-election

Ken Cockrel Address the Warrendale Community Organization - Photo by Frank Nemecek

Detroit City Council Member Ken Cockrel announced this afternoon that he will not seek re-election to a fifth term this year. If he had run this year, he almost certainly would have won regardless of whether he ran for a district seat or one of the two citywide seats.

In a statement on his Tumblr page, Mr. Cockrel stated in part:
Though I've been able to accomplish much during my four terms, I've also come to realize that in a strong mayor form of government, which our city charter prescribes, there are limits to how much a council member can accomplish. These limits are frustrating to me. I feel that I must seek new challenges, new opportunities, and new ways to help this city I love so dearly.
For what it's worth, I for one hope and pray that his search for new ways to help Detroit leads him to challenge incumbent Congressman John C. Conyers, Jr. in the 2014 primary. I do not know if he will actually do this. However, that is what I hope will happen.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Plan for Rouge Park to be Presented on May 8

For several months now, students and faculty members from Lawrence Technological University Design Studio have been working on a master plan for Rouge Park in Detroit. This builds on planning that the non-profit Friends of Rouge Park have been working on since May of 2010.

After several meetings with community stakeholders as well as surveys to gauge what residents want from their park, they are ready to present their plan. This will happen on Wednesday, May 8 at 6 p.m. in the Don Bosco Hall (19321 W. Chicago St.).

This presentation is open to the public. Everyone with an interest in Rouge Park is invited to attend.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Abandoned Boat on Minock

Abandoned Boat on Minock St. - Photo by Frank Nemecek
I have seen some weird things in and around vacant houses in the Detroit area. However, it always amazes me when I see something like a boat that is nestled in between two vacant houses on Minock Street, south of Paul Street.

The boat is in less than ideal condition. It's missing its motor and has clearly seen better days. It could probably be salvaged, though.

The truly interesting thing, at least in my opinion, is that this is the sixth year in a row that I've seen a boat in this condition mysteriously dumped somewhere in the Warrendale neighborhood. The boats never have a motor and rarely have a trailer.

It's as if someone has this vast supply of boats in bad condition. They pull out the motor and a few other things, dumping what's left in Detroit.

Job Fair at Quicken Tomorrow


Quicken Loans, Title Source and our family of companies are hosting a career fair in the Qube Building (611 Woodward Ave. in downtown), which was formerly known as the Chase Building. The career fair will take place tomorrow. It will be open to veterans and U.S. military families only from 10 - 11 a.m. It will be open to the general public from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m.

Through this career fair, the Quicken family of companies is looking to hire 500 team members for several areas of the company including technology, servicing, operations, mortgage banking, and more. There are a lot of open positions they need to fill. We want this career fair to be huge, and an opportunity to showcase all the great things that are going on in Detroit to everyone who walks through the door.

Every applicant who attends will meet with a recruiter and explore available opportunities that best fit their experience and career goals. Applicants will also be given a tour of the Quicken Loans office.

Parking for applicants will be available in the Compuware garage

Friday, April 12, 2013

Friday Focus: Father Emil Kapaun Receives the Medal of Honor



President Barack Obama posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor to Chaplin Emil Kapaun yesterday in a ceremony at the White House. Father Kapaun was a chaplain in the U.S. Army during the Korean War whose conspicuous gallantry under enemy fire saved numerous lives on the battlefield and later in a prisoner of war camp.

Father Kapaun's life, in my opinion, serves as a reminder that one's faith can not only thrive during the most extreme of conditions, it can serve as an inspiration to other people as well. It is, therefore, appropriate that he receive this nation's highest military honor.

I should also mention that, as a Catholic priest, Father Kapaun has been declared a Servant of God by the Catholic Church. This is the first step in the process towards sainthood.

It is my pleasure to share Father Kapaun's story as part of my Friday Focus series.

Tuesday, April 09, 2013

Featured Place to Live: 6300 Evergreen Ave.

6300 Evergreen Ave. - Image from Google Streetview
The Featured Place to Live in Detroit's Warrendale neighborhood is 6300 Evergreen Ave. This charming bungalow at the northeast corner of Paul and Evergreen was built in 1950. It features three bedrooms and one bathroom in its 768 square feet of living space as well as a two car detached garage at the rear of the 5,227 square foot lot.

This home is close to shopping, nightlife, transportation, and other great destinations. In addition to everything else, this reasonably priced home also features a full basement that is partially finished. It is brokered by Pinnacle Real Estate & Investments. You can reach them at (313) 268-3340.

The asking price for this home is only $24,900. This means that with, as little as 5% down, this can be your home with a mortgage payment of only $110 per month - much less than renting an apartment.

6300 Evergreen Ave. is your Featured Place to Live in the Warrendale neighborhood of Detroit. Additional information about this home is available here.

Monday, April 08, 2013

It's Almost Tax Day

The Scream by Edvard Munch
Federal and state personal income tax returns must be filed no later than one week from today. The City of Detroit gives residents, and non-residents who are subject to city income taxes, until April 30 to file their city return.

If you haven't already filed, there are still several options for filing your return electronically. The Michigan Department of Treasury has several e-file options, both free and fee-based ones, available on their web site here. It is your Warrendale Tip of the Week.

Of course, if your return is more complicated and you want to talk with a tax professional, then besides blogging I also manage a Jackson Hewitt office. My contact information is available on the contact tab above.

Friday, April 05, 2013

Friday Focus: Detroit Sanctuary Project



I love highlighting stories that, in my opinion, simply do not get as much coverage as they deserve. One of these stories is the Detroit Sanctuary Project is, which an endeavor to map and photograph every house of worship within the Detroit city limits. I like this idea and have volunteered to map and photograph the various churches in the Warrendale neighborhood as well as our one mosque.

The data and images that this project creates will be used in several forms. There will be an on-line database of every house of worship in Detroit as well as a book containing all of the photographs and a huge mural created out of these images.

The Detroit Sanctuary project has gotten some great support from Spirit Airlines along with a grant from the Pollination Project. Its creator has also launched an appeal on Indiegogo, for those who might be interested in supporting it that way.

If you would like to help photodocument some of the houses of worship in Detroit, please reach out to the creator of this project, Jennie Kay, via her email or the Facebook page for this project.

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

6 Great Place to Celebrate Opening Day in Warrendale

Tiger - Photo by Slavik Gormah
This Friday is the home opener for the Detroit Tigers, with the first pitch scheduled for 1:08 in the afternoon. They will begin their World Series run with a 3-game home-stand against the New York Yankees. If you can't make it downtown to see the game in person, there are several bars and restaurants in the Warrendale neighborhood that offer a fun place to watch the big game.

Chick's Bar (18550 W. Warren Ave.)
A classic neighborhood bar, Chick's offers great specials for every Tigers game with 75 cent drafts, $3.50 pitchers, and $1.75 domestic bottles of beer. They will also have free peanuts. This Friday, their specials will start at 9:00 a.m. for the home opener.

Gracie See's Pizzeria (6889 Greenfield Rd.)
Besides offering their award-winning pizza, the folks at Gracie See's will tempt you this Friday with $1 beers and well drinks, large specialty pizzas for only $11.99, and deluxe hamburgers for $5.99.

Hurry Inn (19430 W. Warren Ave.)
The staff at Hurry Inn offer their usual combination of cheap booze, ample televisions, and a friendly crowd, which make it a great place to watch any sporting event.

Last Call Bar (19432 W. Warren Ave.)
The crew at Last Call are enthusiastic about being in Warrendale. You can ask owner Dorn Zurawski about his ties to the neighborhood in between innings this Friday. While you're there, you can enjoy the house specialty - a cocktail that is aptly named the shit kicker - as well as their usual assortment of daily drink specials.

Tijuana's Mexican Kitchen (18950 Ford Rd.)
This Friday, you will be able to enjoy watching the Tigers on their 2 big screen televisions. Tijuana's will offer drink specials all day, such as 99 cent draft beer and $2.99 margaritas. Of course, their kitchen is always ready when you're in the mood for some great Mexican food.

Toy Chest (18728 Ford Rd.)
For those who prefer a little adult entertainment to go along with their adult beverages, the Toy Chest Bar will offer game day food specials as well as specials on buckets of beer. If you're heading downtown to the stadium, they offer a shuttle to and from Comerica Park. Plus, there is no cover charge with your ticket stub and they are giving away an authentic Tigers jersey on Friday.

With bars offering specials like this, I almost feel sorry for anyone celebrating Opening Day anywhere else in Detroit.

Tuesday, April 02, 2013

Featured Place to Live: 6711 Asbury Park

6711 Asbury Park - Photo from Google Streetview
6711 Asbury Park is a single family home, featuring 1,270 square feet of living space, that is currently for sale. While this three bedroom bungalow does need a bit of work, it's on one of the nicest streets in the Warrendale area.

It features hardwood floors as well as:

  • A partially finished basement;
  • A large master bedroom; and
  • A dining room.
The asking prices for this home is only $24,500, although it could probably be purchased for less than that. With a little bit of work and patience, this home could be an excellent investment opportunity. It location also makes it a nice place to live while one waits for that investment to pay off.

Therefore, 6711 Asbury Park is your Featured Place to Live for this week. Additional information about this home, as well as contact information for the real estate agent, is available here.

Monday, April 01, 2013

DDOT Offers Real-Time Bus Info on iPhone and Android


The Detroit Department of Transportation offers real-time bus service available on iPhone, Android, and Twitter through a new app called Stop313. It focuses on conveniently meeting the needs of our bus-riding passengers in Detroit.

The creator of Stop 313, local technologist Evol Johnson-Winter, designed the free app to assist customers in targeting bus routes and real-time bus arrivals within DDOT's fixed-route service area.  In addition, the Stop 313 app complements DDOT's TextMyBus SMS service, which is available by sending a text to bus-stop locations to 50464 or (313) 499-0937.

The Stop 313 app is available on Google Play. It is your Warrendale Tip of the Week for the week of April 1, 2013.