The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

April 8, 2013

Enid needs more quality rental and housing options


Enid News and Eagle

ENID, Okla. — A forthcoming housing study by Houston-based CDS Market Research is intended to help the Enid Regional Development Alliance avoid another “choke point” for the growth of business and bring new business to our area.

“We’re finding our next choke point is housing,” ERDA Executive Director Brent Kisling said.

Although the full findings won’t be released until July, the anecdotal evidence is clear: We need more quality rental and new housing options in Enid and the surrounding area.

The study is expected to determine the exact needs of the community statistically for local builders and lenders.

A city of Enid report shows 27 permits for single-family homes were issued in 2012, eight more than the previous year. In 2010, 72 permits were issued for single-family homes, while 34 of such permits were issued in 2009 and 54 were issued in 2008.

The sole recent building permit for an apartment was issued in 2011, for the 102-unit Tuscana Apartments.

Available housing in our unbelievably strong sellers’ market has significantly dropped in the past 14 months.

We expect the comprehensive study will focus on housing trends in Enid and the surrounding area, examine the regional market and involve interviews with stakeholders.

It should also provide some solutions, things other communities have done and potential partnerships.

Two years ago, new home construction suffered due to fears surrounding the departure of Continental Resources and its 263 employees.

But the housing apocalypse never happened.

Continental CEO and President Harold Hamm safeguarded Enid’s existing real estate market during the company’s relocation to Oklahoma City.

As a candidate, Ward 3 Commissioner Ben Ezzell wisely noted a lack of affordable housing.

Perhaps the city commission could help alleviate the housing shortage by creating incentives for low-income tax credit developers.

We’ll say it again: We seriously need new housing in Enid. Even after the oil boom cools, we will need more quality rental housing.

This is especially true for the transient personnel stationed at Vance Air Force Base.