Texas Housing Market Strong

How do High Prices Affect Eagle Ford Residents?
Texas Housing Market Strong

Texas Housing Market Strong

Housing markets in Texas remain strong remain strong despite an economic slump in the nation’s energy capital, but some worry about the high prices for a few Eagle Ford residents.

Related: Low Oil Prices and the Texas Economy

The decline in oil prices over the last year has caused a slowdown in employment growth and some job cuts, but homes sales remain strong. In May 2015, there were 28,088 sales of existing single-family homes, 1.66% percent more than in May 2014.

Lawrence Yun, the chief economist for the National Association of Realtors, said that home price increases in Texas are running at about twice national rates.

While increased home prices are a great thing for property owners, for many at the bottom of the wage pool, this represents a constant struggle to make ends meet.

“We need to tone down the price growth, because prices are rising too fast,” Yun said. “House prices nationally are now reaching back to 2006 levels,” before the recession.

Residents in some Eagle Ford counties are among the most vulnerable. UTSA just announced they will be conducting a study of the impact of oil-and-gas exploration on the affordability and adequacy of housing in Dimmit, La Salle and Zavala counties. The study, funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, will also address how federal, county and local policies affect the availability of rental housing, affordable housing and housing options for vulnerable populations.

Texas continues to lead the nation in consumer confidence. The Texas region’s consumer confidence index was 130.5 in May 2015, up 7.5 percent from April 2015 and compared to the national index of 95.4

Read more at texaseconomy.org

Will School Districts Be Forced to Build Housing?

McMullen County owns homes and now Three Rivers is building homes for teachers

Eagle Ford housing issues will likely continue until permanent housing can can meet the needs of the population. In the mean time, we’re going to see investments from places you might not expect. School districts are the latest to enter the fold in home development.

Oilfield workers have brought their families and snapped up available homes across South Texas. That same influx of people and students has increased the need for teachers. The new teachers in turn face the challenge of finding affordable homes. (FYI – there aren’t any)

McMullen County ISD has built homes before and it along with other school districts are determining the best way to invest this time around. With rental homes going for $2,000 per month or more, affordable housing is more scarce than ever. The school districts will have to help or open positions will not likely be filled.

Three Rivers recently purchased a piece of land and placed two mobile homes on the property as a short-term solution. Rohrbach said they’ve budgeted $100,000 to get the project started. Long-term, the plan is to build houses or duplexes on the land. More money will be approved as needed, Rohrbach said.

Rent will be reasonable, he said, at about $500 or $600 a month.

Read the full story addressing the issue at caller.com