Detroit Land Bank house auction website crashes

Man who thought he had winning bid told there was a tie

By Steve Garagiola - Reporter/Anchor

DETROIT - The online auction of homes for the Detroit Land Bank was so popular that the website crashed, leaving one bidder believing he purchased a home, only to learn the bidding ended in a tie.

Carl Hollier was actively bidding on house on Chicago Boulevard in Detroit's Boston Edison district last Friday, competing with another bidder.

"We're going back and forth, I'd bid and he'd bid $100 more. Then we'd go up a thousand, he'd go up another thousand. It was tit for tat for almost an hour," Hollier said.

Finally, Hollier said, the time came to make a serious raise in his bid.

"I upped the bidding $7,000 from $128,000 to $135,000," he said.

That is when the bidding stopped. Hollier said the website told him the auction ended.

"It said you won this item, bidding closed, and it had my name right at the bottom," he said.

But then Carl got a call. He was told he had not won. The website crashed when the bidding was tied.

"I was like, no, I'm sorry, I don't accept that. There's no way to have a tie when you're in an auction," Hollier said.

Local 4 on Monday obtained the official bidding log from the Detroit mayor's office.

The log showed that at 5:36 p.m. Friday, at the time the website crashed, there were identical maximum bids of $135,000 onĀ  the property.

City officials said Monday they were adding capacity to the website and will reopen that Chicago Boulevard property for bidding on June 6

Carl Hollier is expected to bid on the house again.

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