Monday, September 15, 2014

Why are DFW developers furiously building northward?

Phillips Creek Ranch 2p
DFW developers are making a $15B bet that as North Texas grows, so will the demand — and prices — for giant, ready-made communities
As more millennials take to the workforce in Dallas-Fort Worth, and around the country, why are developers continuing to furiously build northward in the region? After all, millennials want to live in urban neighborhoods and delay the homebuying decision.

However, as more people move to North Texas to fill the growing amount of jobs (more than 120,000 in the past year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics) — there's a high demand for either apartments or homes in the 'burbs, sources say.
Typically, residential developers expect to build a new home for every two new jobs generated, said Robbie Briggs, president and CEO of Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty in Dallas.
In North Texas, that’s more than 60,000 new homes. But less than half of them are under construction.
“It’s concerning knowing the kinds of numbers of workers companies are talking about bringing in,” he said.
Briggs’ real estate firm has helped a number of Toyota executives find homes in North Texas, from Frisco to Turtle Creek in Dallas to the farther northern reaches of the Metroplex.
“If we don’t develop these communities, there won’t be enough housing to sell to people,” he added. “The housing market is really, really tight.”
The housing market is tight because of the number of corporate relocations and expansions fueling development throughout the region. That's especially true in the region's northern reaches where schools have the good ratings, said Fred Balda, president of Dallas’ Hillwood Communities, which kicked off the $600 million Union Park master-planned community on Wednesday.
Because there aren't enough homes to go around, people are being forced to rent apartments or delay their home purchases, and that means demand for homes won’t go away any time soon, Balda said.
“There’s going to be good, sustained housing demand in North Texas,” he said.

I've written about the need for more housing in North Texas in this week's print edition.