SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Finding a first home isn’t easy, or cheap in Sioux Falls. According to the City Housing Department, the median price of a single family home is almost $210,000. Finding a place to rent is also tricky. We take a look at how the city is trying to build a more affordable housing market.
Affordable housing is hard to come by.
“We need to do additional work to create affordable housing stock. And we are in the process of developing a comprehensive housing strategy plan to do just that,” said Sioux Falls Housing Manager, Chellee Unruh.
For nearly 20 years the Neighborhood Revitalization Project has been building homes for those who can’t afford what’s on the market. Now, it’s harder than ever to find a home under $200,000.
“If you look at the job market that’s available, a lot of them are in that either entry level or skilled job. And those pay scales are in that affordable housing range,” said Unruh.
“Most of these home buyers don’t make a lot of money, so they don’t get the opportunity to save. But it allows them to almost build a little bit of savings into their home,” said Sioux Falls Housing Specialist, Brent Tucker.
The Neighborhood Revitalization uses federal funds from the Housing Urban Development grant to build homes people can actually afford.
“These houses cost around $210,000 to construct. But they are being sold because of the federal dollars the city receives, they’re being sold for about $175,000,” said Tucker.
On top of that, Affordable Housing Solutions helps with down payments and can bring that cost to $150,000. City officials believe making more homes affordable will bring in and retain employees, which helps the economy as a whole.
It also encourages a more appealing environment for everyone.
“It allows other buyers in that block to not want to have the worst house in the area. So they do go out and make improvements, and that’s not just through neighborhood revitalization but any area of town where a house is built. Neighbors get involved and want to fix up their home,” said Tucker.
The city is looking for more partners, whether they be individuals, organizations or contractors in town!
If you’re looking for an affordable home, there are some available to apply for!