North Dakota Housing is Booming — As is Its Homeless Rate

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As new residents flooded into North Dakota to ride out its current shale oil drilling boom, the state saw more new home constructions than any other state during the years between 2010 and 2014, a new report reveals.

According to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, the U.S. Census Bureau’s most recent annual report shows that North Dakota’s housing rate saw a 10.4% growth between 2010 and 2014, far outpacing other states. Second-place Texas, for example, saw growth of just 4.5%.

“We’ve seen families move into North Dakota from around the country, and the majority are coming because of the influx with the oil boom,” Kim Schneider, executive officer with the North Dakota Association of Builders, said.

Newly-built homes have a good chance of being bought soon after construction ends. In one recent Harris Poll study, 41% of American home buyers would prefer a new home over an existing one for the same price.

Most of North Dakota's housing growth took place in the western regions where oil drilling is most prevalent, such as Williams County and Stark County.
Most of North Dakota’s housing growth took place in the western regions where oil drilling is most prevalent, such as Williams County and Stark County.

Most of North Dakota’s housing growth took place in the western regions where oil drilling is most prevalent, such as Williams County and Stark County. Cass and Grand Forks counties, located in the eastern part of the state, also enjoyed growth that exceeded 3% between mid-2013 and mid-2014.

Yet while new housing constructions are undoubtedly on the rise, the state’s homeless rate continues to be an area of concern. According to the Washington Times, the number of homeless people in North Dakota rose to 1,305 this year, up from 1,258 at the same time in 2014.

However, the homeless rate still hasn’t reached its record high of 2,069 in 2013, which the North Dakota Coalition for Homeless People attributes to more affordable housing and an improving economy.

As North Dakota’s housing market continues to enjoy a historic upswing, it’s important to remember the state’s residents who don’t have homes of their own.

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