Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Oklahoma's Turnover Rate of Homeowners Improves

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Oklahoma's Turnover Rate of Homeowners Improves

Article excerpt

As the Oklahoma economy suffered through most of the 1980s, much of the U.S. seemed either not to notice or not to care. Or, maybe they did care. It's just that everybody has problems they must work out for themselves.

Whatever.

Now that the talk in Oklahoma is more about recovery than disaster, people in other parts of the country actually seem to be taking notice. Oklahoma City's top 10 ranking for best U.S. cities for business by Fortune magazine was evidence that good news about our state can reach a national audience.

Here's more:

"Oklahoma is an excellent example of the real estate recovery in the nation's oil patch," according to John Pfister, vice president and market research director for Chicago Title and Trust Co., the nation's largest title insurance underwriter.

Pfister conducted a state-by-state study to determine how long people stay in their homes after they buy them. The assumption is a faster average turnover rate means more economic activity and a more robust real estate economy.

Back in 1980, when things were booming around here, the average homeowner turnover rate in Oklahoma was 9.5 years. By 1988, the rate had slowed to 17.2 years.

Pfister's study found housing turnover in Oklahoma accelerated by 1.6 years in 1989, to 15.6 years.

"Certainly for the near future, the Iraqi crisis should have a palpable affect on the oil patch economies," according to Pfister.

He said homeowner mobility is affected by a number of factors, including population growth or lack of same, regional economic strengths or weaknesses, public perception about trends in interest rates, urban-rural demographics and the composition of population by age groups within a state.

The nationwide average homeowner turnover rate in 1989 was 12 years, up from 11.5 years in 1988.

"The findings show a steady national rate, but fluctuating regional activity," Pfister said. …

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