Walter Hicks sits on his home's stopp. He looks at the camera with his hands on his knees, one foot propped on a step.

Because the City of Detroit has failed to reassess the property value of homes since 2008, Detroit resident Walter Hicks pays property. 

Walter Hicks sits in front of a brick wall, facing the camera. He has a serious expression and wears a baseball hat and black t-shirt.

“I was embarrassed to see the foreclosure notice—and then I looked down my block. Almost everyone had one.” -Walter Hicks, Detroit resident.

A foreclosed brick house with a black metal gate in front of the door. Weeds and grass are growing tall in the front yard.

There are several homes on Walter Hick's block that have either gone into foreclosure or gone into foreclosure and then have been condemned.

A worn out welcome mat on concrete

"As a Black man, I've always wanted to own my own home. And I take pride in my house." -Walter Hicks, Detroit resident.

A foreclosed house with boarded up windows.

The most recent foreclosure on Walter Hicks' block is right next door to his own home. And if he cannot get the poverty exemption, he fears his home will be next.

Walter Hicks holds a cellphone flashlight up to a drop ceiling with a hole in it and a crack running down the wall

Under the immense financial burden of inflated property taxes, Walter Hicks struggles to make repairs on his Detroit home.

A set of concrete steps that are cracked and falling apart

Walter Hicks points to rot on his upper balcony

When Walter Hicks applied for a poverty exemption on his property taxes, he was denied. The city told him that he owned another house on the city's east side. As it turns out, they had the wrong Walter, yet still the city continues to deny him the poverty exemption.

Walter Hicks holds up a large square of concrete with a hole through the middle

Walter Hicks sits on his stoop in front of his house looking towards the street.

Walter Hicks struggles to pay his property taxes each month and says it feels like he can never get ahead. "It seems like I've been in this tax loop paying taxes forever. And I don't see no light to it." -Walter Hicks, Detroit resident.

Walter Hicks looks at the left side of his house, where there is a tree, trash, and bits of concrete

Walter Hicks sits in an easy chair in the corner of a room

"I was born and raised in Detroit ... all my life. And I love my city. I wouldn't wan't to be anywhere else but here ... If they let me stay." - Walter Hicks, Detroit resident

Walter Hicks points towards his foreclosed house.

"I looked down my whole block, and then I went to the next block and at least 90 percent of the houses had (foreclosure) tags on them." -Walter Hicks, Detroit resident.

The reflection of the street in the glass of Walter Hick's front door.

“I just want to be treated fairly” -Walter Hicks, Detroit resident.