CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — If you’re looking to buy a house or rent an apartment, you might want to consider going back in time two years. If only we could, right?
Jo Ann Davila owns rental homes in Nueces and San Patricio counties and said the demand for apartments and rental properties has gone up over the past two years. She said she’s even had to turn people away because others are offering above asking price.
“The demand is there, the market is there. It’s a seller’s market, I guess you can say,” Davila said.
According to Rent Data.org, the Corpus Christi area is 95 percent more expensive than other areas in Texas when it comes to rent and utilities.
Joshua Roberson, a lead data analyst at Texas A&M University's Real Estate Research Center said in Corpus Christi, the average house price was $233,000 in 2019 and that shot up to an average of $316,000 in 2021.
“Even before the pandemic, supply was at its all time low, so that goes a lot to explaining why things are the way they are right now,” Roberson said.
Luis Torres, a research economist from Texas A&M University said more demand is leading to an increase in the prices of homes. However, he said some people who can’t afford a home are turning to renting, which is leading to higher rent.
“What happens if those people that can’t afford - let’s say they can’t afford right now - they’re going to somewhere else and find an apartment that’s more suitable for them based on their income restraints,” Torres said.
He said landlords are raising rent to weed out people who can’t afford it, but he said with mortgage rates increasing, demand should go down.
“It’s a cycle. You see the strong demand and then it starts to weaken. And then you go back to a more normal trend, more sustainable trends that we (saw) before the pandemic,” Torres said.
He said home prices won’t go down, but the the prices shouldn’t go up as quickly as they have in the past two years.
Davila had this advice for people who are trying to rent: “I tell everybody yes, it’s hard to compete, but just make your payments because that’s the first thing I’m going to ask.”