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Strong economy translates to strong housing market

North Dakota's economy continues to experience growth - and the Fargo-Moorhead region is no exception to that.

The Homebuilders Association of Fargo Moorhead has released its first quarter building report for Dilworth, Fargo, Moorhead and West Fargo.  Carlita Dietz is current HBA president and says despite the bitter winter, housing starts are on the rise.

"Housing starts actually saw a slight increase during the first quarter, if you can believe that. The valuations rose about five percent. We're seeing a little difference in price range and increase in valuation of the homes. So we went from 12.8 million to 13.5 million in total housing valuations.  Overall the number of housing starts was 56, which is very compatible with the five year average."

Dietz says those housing starts include single family homes, twin-homes, duplexes and row houses.  Commercial rental properties are also going up as well - up to 275 starts in 2014 over 2013's 239, and valued at just over 5.5 million dollars - an increase of over 1.7 million dollars in 2013.

Dietz says North Dakota's booming economy can definitely be felt in the Fargo-Moorhead area.

"I personally haven't had anybody building because of the Bakken, but I have had people buying in our area, leaving Williston and coming this direction. I've seen people coming into this part of the country just because they know the economy is strong - they're not necessarily interested in what's going on in the Bakken, but overall they know North Dakota is very healthy."

Dietz says as the weather continues to warm up, so will the building industry.  She says all signs point to yet another successful building season.

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