Join and get involved with the MI Impact Coalition  and MHPN as we work to bring back Michigan’s State Rehab Tax  Credit. New bills were introduced in the house & senate January 2019. 

Field Representative

Preservationists in Michigan have access to two field representatives.  The field representatives advocate and educate for Michigan’s historic places. They work with municipalities, grass roots preservation groups, and property owners to preserve the places that matter to them. The field reps provide information and advocacy assistance, conduct educational presentations, coordinate training workshops, and assist with preservation planning and strategies.  They also help to connect people with preservation resources and professionals around the state, and provide guidance to nonprofits on preservation grants and to property owners on rehabilitation tax credits.

Preservation Presentations

The following are presentations MHPN can provide community groups such as DDA members, historic property owners, municipalities, preservation groups, homeowner associations, historic district commissions, realtors, and groups interested in learning more about historic preservation and how it can help to preserve a community’s vitality and heritage.

Design Guidelines

Explains what design guidelines are, what they can/can’t do, how to create them, how to evaluate them, the common elements and various examples.


Explains what an easement is, how it benefits the property owner, the effect on property rights, what an easement includes and the process of attaining one. Describes the MHPN easement program and features the unique case study of Bowers Harbor, the first MHPN/Land Conservancy easement partnership in Michigan.

Economic Benefits

1. Investing in Michigan’s Future – Economic Benefits of Historic Preservation
Explains preservation economic development and how it supports Michigan economy and benefits owners and users of historic properties. Includes state and federal tax incentives, economic benefits of rehab, heritage tourism, increased property values in Local Historic Districts (LHD) and many examples and case studies. Also includes how Michigan compares to other states regarding preservation economic benefits. Lengthy and detailed, created by Clarion & Assoc.

2. Historic Preservation and Community Revitalization
Explains preservation economic benefits including tax credits, LHD, heritage tourism, how rehab affects local economies, and includes a Grand Rapids case study. Some overlap with “Investing in Michigan’s Future” presentation.

3. The Value of Historic Preservation
A basic presentation that explains the value of Historic Preservation (HP) to a community through historic designations: Local Historic Districts, National Register, State Historic Sites, preservataion easements, heritage tourism, and quality of life. It also identifies the types of historic resources and how to determine their eligibility for one of these designations. Also covers (in general terms) the economic incentives for each.

4. Tax Credit Workshops
Co-presented by MHPN and State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO), this workshop provides communities with the preservation tools and financial incentives to rehabilitate historic properties, with a special emphasis on commercial buildings. The purpose is to assist communities in learning how to use these tools for revitalization and economic development efforts. The workshop will last approximately 2 – 2 ½ hours and includes time at the end for individual questions from property owners.

Historic Designations – National Register, State Historic Sites/Markers, Local Historic Districts

1. Understanding Historic Designations
Includes why and how we preserve through various designations – National Register, state markers, local historic districts, and the process for each. Also, what resources can be preserved, and how they can be researched, and how designations provide the opportunity for tax credits.

2. Making the Case for your Historic Resource – How to apply National Register criteria
Explains various historic resources and recaps historic designation types. Focuses on what the NR criteria is for determining significance and how to apply it to various resources, and why the case must be made. Explains historic context and research resources. Some overlap with “Understanding Historic Designations” presentation.

3. Local Historic Districts
Includes what a LHD is and its purpose, how it affects the property owner, tax benefits, the process of establishing a LHD, the LHD Commission and how it makes its decisions.

Intro to Preservation and Why Preserve?

1. Intro to Preservation
Includes why and how to preserve buildings through historic designations and easements, and the economic impacts of preservation.

2. Why Preserve?
Introductory presentation on why and how to preserve, includes value of sense of place, historic designations, basic economic benefits, heritage tourism, easements and role of local preservation groups.

Michigan Preservation Fund (Grant)

Identifies what it is, who can apply, eligible activities, the application process and grant deadline cycles.

Researching/Exploring Historic Buildings

1. Researching Your Historic Building
Includes various research resources available – Sanborn maps, newspapers, census directories, city directories, tax records, oral histories, photos and how to create a chain of title. Also includes how to investigate your building, the architectural style and construction for clues on its age and design.

2. Historic Buildings as Artifacts
How to investigate a historic building by exploring a historic apartment house. Slides take you through it room by room, inspecting its details, looking for“ghosts” of previous construction, and trying to determine original floorplan. Also includes how this info can make the case for historical/architectural significance for a NR nomination.

3. Be a Building Detective
Abbreviated version of “Historic Buildings as Artifacts” presentation. Does not include details on making the case for National Register nomination significance.

Role of Nonprofit

1. The Role of the Nonprofit in Historic Preservation – (specific to MHPN)
Includes overview of how preservation gets done and how MHPN fits into the picture, what we offer and why we play an important community role in preserving historic resources.

2. MHPN Services and Programs
Includes MHPN services/programs such as education and advocacy efforts, easement program, annual conference, annual preservation awards, and networking opportunities.

Secretary of the Interior Standards
Provides an overview of the Standards and how they are utilized. Also defines each standard and provides examples, explains general construction issues. Many photos/examples.

Greater Michigan Field Representatives

Southeast Michigan Field Representatives

Detroit Historic Preservation Specialist