Detroit Mayor Duggan responds to HGTV star Nicole Curtis’ lawsuit over ownership of home

Duggan says Curtis was ‘scammed’ after purchasing house from people who no longer owned it

Detroit Mayor Duggan responds to lawsuit filed by Nicole Curtis

DETROIT – A celebrity renovation project on a vacant house in Detroit has now involved a lawsuit over ownership.

Lake Orion native Nicole Curtis, who hosts Rehab Addict Rescue on HGTV, filed a lawsuit against the Detroit Land Bank Authority, claiming she owned a home on East Grand Boulevard.

Curtis planned to renovate the home, but the Land Bank listed the home for sale about a month ago.

She mentioned the dispute with the city via Twitter over the weekend.

“It’s a sad day when our team is investing $$$$ into attorneys rather than the city of #detroit -calling @MayorMikeDuggan -are you really okay with @BuildingDet refusing to find resolve? Million dollar(s) question right there” Curtis said in a tweet.

According to the Detroit Land Bank Authority, the previous homeowners lost the home in January 2017. They sold it illegally to Curtis five months later for $17,000.

Nearly a year had passed before the city learned of the deal, but by then Curtis had started investing in the renovation.

Duggan said he is a fan of Curtis but said the city has to follow the law.

“I feel bad for Nicole. It appears she was scammed. It appears she paid somebody who didn’t own the house and paid them to buy it. But the Land Bank cannot legally give her the property,” Duggan said.

The land bank said it has made attempts to resolve the issue but Curtis has rejected them.

“She can have 100 critical stories, the Land Bank is not going to break the law. They can’t turn the property over without getting values,” Duggan said.

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Jason anchors Local 4's 5:30 p.m. newscast. He joined WDIV in January 2015 as a general assignment reporter and has a Journalism degree from Michigan State University.