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Rockdale residents struggle finding affordable housing, apartments amid rising home prices

Posted at 5:45 PM, Mar 14, 2024

ROCKDALE, Texas — Residents across the United States are struggling to find affordable housing, especially in Rockdale where the average cost of a home is more than resident's median household income.

  • The average home in Rockdale costs about $234,921, but the average income is $39,911.
  • There is only one HUD-regulated property in the city, but they often maintain a wait-list.
  • Rockdale Housing Authority is hoping to build more affordable housing units, but the agency is struggling to find funding.

BROADCAST TRANSCRIPT:

It took two years for Rebecca Davis and Alfred Gilbert to find their forever home.

But they had limited options.

“We checked other places, and a lot of their apartments they have here are higher than we can afford because we’re both on disability," Davis said.

Amy Granados said it’s a problem facing people in Central Texas and across the United States.

She’s the manager at the Rockdale Housing Authority, which helps residents find affordable housing.

But it’s just not available.

“We’ve only got one HUD-regulated property in Rockdale, which is based on income," Granados said. "Right now we have people that come in or they move to the area for jobs, etc. But they their income doesn't meet the requirement for housing.”

The average price for a home in Rockdale is $234,921.

But local Realtor Judith Matoula told me prices could be on track to reach prices of homes in larger cities like Waco, sitting at $324,835 and Killeen at $297,490.

“Sometimes a lot of people think if you go to a small town that you maybe get a better buy. Well, that’s not particularly true," she said.

The reason — increased demand, limited supply, higher mortgage rates due to inflation and low wages.

Granados said the agency is trying to build more units to help.

But...

“The problem is grants, money,” she said.

And Davis’ and Gilbert’s advice to people searching...

“Take your time trying to find the place because if you don't you never know what's gonna happen," Davis said.