Introducing: The Housing Information Portal

D3 is happy to announce our newest data tool – the Housing Information Portal (HIP).  HIP serves as a centralized source of information about housing and neighborhood-related demographics in Detroit. 

This tool expands on our 2018 Housing Portal to provide even more detailed information about parcels and properties in Detroit neighborhoods, and the people who occupy them. With support from the Kresge Foundation, we’ve leveraged the extensive data framework and geography search feature from the State of the Detroit Child (SDC) tool, and incorporated data specific to housing and neighborhoods from various Detroit and national databases. 

Establishing HIP started with a year long user research process that we worked on in collaboration with the University of Michigan and Community Development Advocates of Detroit (CDAD), with support from the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan. At the end of that process, we took all the feedback that we had gathered and used it to create a plan to build HIP out to its current state. Since 2019, we have carried out that plan, with support from The Kresge Foundation and continued partnership with CDAD and the Detroit Neighborhood Housing Compact.

Comprehensive Housing Data

From each profile, users can access a wide variety of data about  housing and property  that makes understanding current trends and comparisons easy and intuitive. These data are divided into several categories:

Occupancy data includes: 

  • the number of housing units in the geography
  • whether units are vacant or owner- or renter-occupied
  • basic demographic information of housing occupants
  • high-level transactional information such as:
    • building permits
    • tax foreclosures
    • property transaction data from the Detroit Assessor’s Office

Cost and value data provides:

  • how much homeowners and renters are paying for their homes
  • the dollar value and tax value of housing units in the area
  • insights into whether homeowners and renters are cost-burned 
  • Insights into how affordable housing is in the selected community

Housing conditions data includes:

  • information on the size and quality of housing units, including:
    • number of bedrooms
    • utilities included in renter-occupied units
    • housing units with substandard housing conditions
  • detailed information about blight violations, including
    • total blight tickets
    • blight violations by department, month, and type issued
    • payment amount and status of upheld blight violations

Neighborhood demographics provide basic household insights like:

  • Persons per household
  • Number of children under 18
  • Household income and percentage of people living in poverty
  • Vehicle availability 
  • Registered voters  

Finally, Neighborhood education data includes information on school enrollment and child care.

Geography Search Tool

We’ve incorporated our Draw a Geography feature from SDC 2.0, allowing users to draw boundaries for the neighborhoods or areas that they’re interested in, even when they include multiple census tracts or ZIP codes. Users can also search by address to find out more about the area surrounding a particular property. 

Users can use the HIP geography search the same way as the SDC geography search. This tool can automatically select a geography based on an input location, or aggregate geographies based on a selection drawn on the map. Users can pick their geographic aggregation level (census tract, zip code, school district, city, county, and more), trace the outline of the area they want to learn more about, and create a named profile with a custom URL for easy return visits.

The HIP Custom Profile Gallery makes it easy to return to any custom geography, and explore profiles that have been made by other users.

Parcel ID Search Tool 

In addition to the Geography Search tool, the Housing Information Portal has a Parcel ID Search Tool, which allows users to search by parcel ID or address in order to find detailed information about a specific property. Users must register and be signed in to use this tool. 

The Parcel ID Search Tool provides the option to enter the desired parcel ID or address and search available options, or to click on a parcel on a map. Clicking on the address from the search dropdown menu or clicking the “See the Data” button on the map will allow a user to see a selection of characteristics and parcel activities for the property. 

Characteristics include owner information and tax and values for the previous 10 years from the Detroit Assessor’s Office. Additionally, the most current available vacancy information from the Valassis VNEF Plus Database is listed, as well as voter information if applicable.

Parcel Activities include data on the building history of the parcel, including blight violations, building permits, and demolitions. Transactional historical data of sales and foreclosures can also be viewed on this page.

Landing Page Links

In addition to being able to explore neighborhood- and parcel-level data, users can scroll through the home page for a deeper dive into reports and resources on various housing topics from the front page.

The Information for Action section houses five collections of resources on various Detroit housing topics, including housing affordability, tax foreclosure and eviction, demolitions, context on Detroit’s current housing situation, and COVID-19 housing resources. Clicking on each of these topics links to a high level topic summary and short summaries of and links to detailed reports. Additionally, each page includes links to news stories, related tools, and other contacts and resources.

The HIP home page also contains links to maps, housing-related blogs, and housing data from our open data portal.

Is there anything else that you’d like to see on the Housing Information Portal? We’re always looking for user feedback to make our tools the best they can be for Detroit organizations and the community. Submit your questions and suggestions to!

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