Rob Rose, executive director of Cook County Land Bank Authority (m), and the HGTV’s the Downing Brothers promoted the Land Bank’s registration opening for a free home in Washington Heights during last Saturday’s Bud Billiken Parade

The Cook County Land Bank Authority is giving away a free, single-family home in Washington Heights that’s been rehabbed by HGTV’s South Side darlings, the Downing Brothers.

And all you’ve got to do is register online at for your chance to become the lucky owner of this giveaway home. 

“We have rehabbed many homes, but this is one of the most impactful projects we’ve been involved in because it helps make affordable homeownership more accessible,” said Anton Downing, one-half of the Downing Brothers on the HGTV house-flipping pilot show, “Double Down.”

Registration for the Land Bank’s third annual Home Giveaway opened on Aug. 10, and will last through Sept. 15. The lucky winner will receive the keys, and deed, to the Washington Heights home in the fall.

Fifth Third Bank helped sponsor the rehab.

“The rehab that we’ve done on the giveaway home is so wonderful that my brother and I would love to live in the home ourselves, but we’re excited to turn it over to a winner this fall,” Anton Downing explained.

Photo of house being rehabbed | Photo provided by Rudd Resources

The Land Bank uses its Home Giveaway to raise awareness for its Homebuyer Direct Program. Through that initiative, people can purchase abandoned homes at below-market rates, rehab them and earn immediate equity.

Since the Homebuyer Direct program started in 2017, the Land Bank has provided more than 140 homes to homebuyers, earning those homebuyers an average of $20,000 in equity.

“The beauty of the Homebuyer Direct program is that it breaks down barriers to homeownership and helps transform communities by offering fixer-upper homes at below-market prices,” said Robert Rose, the Land Bank’s executive director. 

“People who own homes are more vested in them and, in turn, more vested in the health of the community,” Rose continued. “We’re happy to give away a free home to shine a light on this great program.

The mortgage on the Land Bank’s giveaway home is already paid in full. The lucky winner will be responsible for paying property taxes, insurance and utility bills. For more information, visit