Housing study: From 2000-2012, housing growth in Elk River like night and day

Click here to read more about Elk River’s housing study.

Click here to read about the median income in Elk River.

by Joni Astrup

Associate editor

Matt Mullins described it as night and day.

The Depot at Elk River Station was under construction in Elk River in 2011.

It’s the comparision of residential development in Elk River from 2000 to 2012.

During the first part of that era —from 2000 to 2006 — Elk River experienced rapid growth. But it stalled after that and has been anemic ever since.

The city issued permits for the construction of 2,420 housing units in the last decade; 90 percent of them were issued from 2001-2006, he said.

Mullins is vice president of Maxfield Research in Minneapolis, the firm which recently completed a housing study in Elk River.

As for sales of existing homes, Mullins said median sales prices over the last decade peaked in 2005 at $234,900 in Elk River. Since then, median sales prices have declined by about 35 percent.

In 2011, the median sales price in Elk River was $132,000.

Lender-mediated sales, such as short sales and foreclosures, accounted for 50 percent of transactions since 2009, he said.

“Until those get off the books, we’re not going to really see that price appreciation,” he said. But the good news, he added, is that things appear better in 2012 and there have been some upticks in prices.

The majority of home foreclosures have been in the multi-family sector, particularly townhomes, he said. A significant number of multi-family units are selling for less than $100,000 today.

Other findings from the study:

•Eighty-two percent of Elk River homeowners have a mortgage, compared to 68 percent nationally. Mullins said that’s expected in a growing community. In addition, about a third of Elk River homeowners with mortgages also have a second mortgage or home equity loan.

•Eighty percent of the households in Elk River are homeowners, up from 78 percent a decade ago and higher than the state as a whole.

•The unemployment rate in Sherburne County is at 7.6 percent, higher than the state rate of 6 percent but lower than the national rate of 8.2 percent.

•In interviews with the major employers in Elk River, Maxfield Research found that housing for employees is not an issue. Most employees are able to find housing and at prices they can afford. Housing isn’t hindering economic development, Mullins said.

•Elk River’s population grew 40 percent from 2000 to 2010. The city’s population in the 2010 census was 22,974. Looking foward, the area will still see strong growth, but not as robust as in the last decade, he said. Elk River’s 2020 population is projected to be 26,265.

Home sweet home 

New home construction (total units)  in Elk River*, 2000-2012**

2000……………………….284

2001……………………….256

2002……………………….244

2003……………………….550

2004……………………….547

2005……………………….344

2006……………………….250

2007……………………….116

2008…………………………25

2009…………………………20

2010…………………………68

2011…………………………11

2012*………………………..14

*includes single family homes, twin homes, townhomes and multi-family units

**through July 2012

Source: Maxfield Research, City of Elk River


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