Gov. Gretchen Whitmer
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 2, 2020
Governor Whitmer Signs “Pay As You Stay” Legislation to
Help Michiganders Stay in their Homes
LANSING, Mich. Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed House Bill 5124, Pay As You Stay (PAYS), sponsored by Rep. Wendell Byrd, D-Detroit, to help Michigan homeowners struggling to pay property taxes stay in their homes by providing affordable payment plans and eliminating penalties, interest, and fees to manage their taxes.
“Pay As You Stay will help homeowners across the state struggling with delinquent taxes stay in their homes,” said Governor Whitmer. “Everyone deserves a path to own a home, and this program will help tens of thousands of Detroiters and Wayne County residents avoid foreclosure. I applaud Representative Byrd, County Executive Warren Evans, Mayor Duggan and all of our partners for their leadership in getting this done for all Michiganders.”
Governor Whitmer was joined by Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist II, Rep. Wendell Byrd, Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan, Wayne County Executive Warren Evans, and Wayne County Treasurer Eric Sabree for the bill signing at Wayne Metro Community Action Agency in Detroit.
"Governor Whitmer signing Pay as You Stay into law is the culmination of years of efforts by a whole coalition of partners that have been working every day to reduce tax foreclosures in Detroit by 94 percent over the past five years,” said Mayor Mike Duggan. “I believe Pay As You Stay is going to help a lot more people at risk of foreclosure to significantly reduce their monthly payments and stay in their homes. The most important thing anyone in Detroit in this situation can do is to get enrolled in the Homeowner Property Tax Assistance Program so they can qualify for Pay as You Stay.”
“This legislation will help residents move off payment plans and avoid foreclosure,” said Wayne County Executive Warren C. Evans. “Wayne County is much better off with people in their homes and I hope we can expand on this effort. We will continue to pursue ways to help low-income residents overcome poverty.”
House Bill 5124 implements the PAYS program to allow foreclosing governmental units to significantly reduce delinquent property taxes owed by homeowners who qualify for poverty exemptions.
The program is a three-part plan. Once enrolled, all interest, penalties, and fees would be eliminated. To reduce an undue burden on homeowners, the balance due would be limited to back taxes only or 10 percent of a home’s taxable value – whichever is less. The remaining balance would be paid back over three years at zero percent interest.
Homeowners who qualify for a full or partial Property Tax Exemption (PTE) and enroll in future years would be eligible for the program. To be PTE-eligible, a household with 1 person could not make more than $19,303 per year; a household with 4 people could not make more than $28,671.
For more information on the PAYS program, individuals should contact their county treasurer. Detroit residents can visit www.Detroitmi.gov/pays for more information.