Fort Dodge needs housing of all kinds

Good homes are needed for future growth of community

The employee rosters of Fort Dodge businesses include many people who don’t live in Fort Dodge or Webster County. There are many reasons why people may chose to live elsewhere, but at least some of those folks live outside of town simply because they can’t find a place to live in Fort Dodge.

Fort Dodge needs more housing. It has needed more housing for years, actually.

Real estate professionals and bankers have hard evidence of this need for housing.

During Monday’s City Council meeting, Troy Anderson, president of Coldwell Banker Associated Realtors, reported that there were 26 houses on the Fort Dodge market that day. He said 15 years ago there were 250 houses on the market at any given time.

Also during that meeting Councilman Dave Flattery, who is the president of the local Availa Bank, said his bank has 33 customers who have qualified for a mortgage, but don’t have one simply because they can’t find a house to buy. We suspect every banker in town can report similar statistics.

The good news is that housing is once again emerging as a priority for local leaders. During its meeting Monday, the council moved to support two new housing initiatives. One would result in homes and condos near the Fort Dodge Country Club golf course; the other would yield townhomes on the south edge of downtown.

It is clear that Fort Dodge needs housing of all different kinds. If the city government can encourage new housing construction without reducing services or saddling the taxpayers with more expenses, it ought to do so.

Having a good selection of housing is key to making Fort Dodge an attractive place for people and businesses alike. It should be a priority for local leaders.


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