Eyesore of the week

By Nathan Harris

839 E. Saginaw St., Lansing

Address: 839 E. Saginaw St., Lansing
Owner: Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (SHUD)
Taxpayer: SHUD
Assessed Value: $33,500
Owner Says: Unavailable

This home’s owner, the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, is supposed to specialize in reviving economically depressed areas. In this instance, it’s only succeeding in adding to economic depression.

The dirty siding on 839 E. Saginaw St. makes it stand out against all the homes on the little service street it sits on, which runs parallel to the big Saginaw Street. The front door and most of the windows have been boarded long enough that some are starting to peel away. The windows that aren’t boarded are busted out, or the screens are torn. The front porch has been rebuilt from sheets of plywood and the telephone box on the side of the house has been smashed.

The house was sold at auction in December 2006 to the Michigan State Housing Urban Development Authority. A little over a month later, MSHDA passed the property off to SHUD, which also overees federal mortgage lenders Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.