Dan Gilbert the Detroit legend

Dan Gilbert the Detroit legend

When Dan Gilbert was 11 years old he took a drive with his grandfather down Woodward Avenue in Detroit. He sat in the back seat of their ’71 Oldsmobile as his grandfather pointed at an empty retail location on Detroit’s main drag and said there “usta be” something over there. Then he pointed out how there usta be streetcars downtown, there usta be this, usta be that.

Gilbert says that memory captures how he saw the city while growing up in the neighbouring middle-class suburb of Southfield in the 1960s, and he shared it in a keynote speech with several hundred real estate professionals gathered at the Urban Land Institute’s annual meeting in May, at Detroit’s Cobo Center.

“Doesn’t matter who you are or where you come from: I can guarantee that people have been pointing to things for a long period of time and saying ‘usta,'” he said. “And when you look back at the sort of symbolic bottom of Detroit, I couldn’t think of any worse or sadder word to describe it than ‘usta.'”

Detroit is a large city that lost hundreds of thousands of residents over decades. Its downtown, where Bedrock’s development is focused, became increasingly vacant.

This is now finally changing, and it’s in no small part because of Gilbert, the billionaire founder of mortgage company Quicken Loans and the owner of NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers.

Over the past ten years, as media reports, films, and books churned out negative slurs portraying Detroit as a hollowed-out dystopia, Gilbert and his real-estate firm, Bedrock, were buying swaths of property at bargain prices and pumping in billions of dollars.

Right now there are about 100 properties in Bedrock’s Detroit portfolio. Since its founding in 2011, Bedrock has invested and allocated a total of $5.6 billion into the city. Rock Ventures, Gilbert’s umbrella company of more than 100 businesses, accounts for 17,000 jobs in Detroit, making it the city’s largest employer, minority employer, and taxpayer.

He moved Quicken Loans, now the US’s largest mortgage lender and the foundation of his fortune, to Detroit in 2010.

As Detroiters struggled with the results of years of poor governance at the city and state levels, Gilbert continued a spending spree with the aim of breathing life back into the heart of the city.

Now, for the first time in years, not only are Detroiters and Michiganders interested in what’s happening downtown.

Global Investments have seen an increasing demand in the last 2 years from investors eager to capitalise on the early days of picking up the best bargains in the best locations in Detroit and Cleveland.

Dan Gilbert is looking to save Detroit again !

Obviously many clients have contacted Global Investments recently concerned about investing right now during the global Covid 19 pandemic.

For a more detailed answer here is a link to a great previous blog on this very subject :

Rental property investment could be the safer option in today’s struggling stock market

It is great news then for our investors to hear the positive steps being taken by Dan Gilbert in Detroit and Cleveland during these crazy times. This will no doubt give those still sitting on the fence a little but a reassurance. The next few weeks will most certainly be a buyers market.

Dan Gilbert has donated $1.2 million to Detroit organisations to help them fight the outbreak of COVID-19.

The donation from the Quicken Loans Community Fund and Gilbert Family Foundation includes $500,000 for the United Way for Southeastern Michigan, $250,000 to the United Community Housing Coalition and $450,000 for small businesses and existing grant partners to ensure they can maintain operations in the weeks ahead.

“Our actions today will impact the trajectory of the coronavirus tomorrow, which is why it is so critical that we, as a philanthropic community, immediately support Detroit residents through direct investments in families and those nonprofits that provide crucial services,” said Jennifer Gilbert, co-founder of the Gilbert Family Foundation.

“The Gilbert Family Foundation is proud to invest in United Way and United Community Housing Coalition in order to mitigate the impacts of this virus today and for the foreseeable future. We encourage other organisations to join us in supporting this necessary cause.”

The money provided to the United Way for Southeastern Michigan will go straight to its COVID-19 Community Response Fund, which supports families and nonprofits to ensure access to health care, emergency financial supports and food, as well as addressing long-term needs that result from loss of jobs and income.

Quicken Loans is also matching fundraising for team members who donate to organisations in Detroit, Cleveland, Phoenix and Charlotte.

Dan Gilbert is also waiving rent and parking payments for up to three months for the small businesses located in buildings.
Select businesses that are located in Bedrock buildings will not be charged for rent, parking, or other expenses through the end of June, the company announced in a statement released on Monday.

“As with all of our tenants, entrepreneurs and small businesses play an incredibly important role in our local economy, which has been central to Dan Gilbert’s vision over the last 10 years of his investments in Detroit and Cleveland,

” Bedrock CEO Matt Cullen said in a statement. “It is going to take the entire community to mitigate the effects of this pandemic on the region, and we are happy to do our part to help our portfolio’s most vulnerable businesses weather the storm.

In Detroit, Bedrock houses 125 retailers and restaurants, in addition to another 210 businesses in office space, according to a press release. The company said in a statement that none of the small businesses it leases space to had folded due to the virus thus far.

So if you are looking to take advantage of buy to let opportunities in Detroit or Cleveland, Speak to a member of our team today and we’ll help guide you through the process.

Email Mike or any of his team at Global at invest@globalinvestmentsincorporated.com

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