Recession victims and investors look for rentals in Amarillo

Amarillo, Texas
Larry Lemmons

Newschannel 10

Amarillo's relatively healthy economy is attracting victims of the recession and investors.  Local realtors say they're seeing a lot of people renting property in Amarillo who've had their houses foreclosed on elsewhere.  That demand is keep rents relatively high.

Audrey King, of A-1 Western Realtors, Century 21, says,"We have people calling all the time. Just random, without even looking at the ads or anything, just to see if we have something. A lot of people are moving in."

The Apartment Association of the Panhandle says they're seeing 86-percent occupancy across the area. Some of the owners of the properties are looking for investments. Janette Litz, Executive Director, says, "We have seen more buyers from the California area have come in and purchased properties in our area."

King adds that because it's harder to get a home loan, many find renting the only option.

Some people are not expecting rent to be as high as it is in Amarillo.  Paul French of French and Company Realtors says "Right, they're not and it is. And I tell other owners that are getting in the business, as long as you keep your properties clean, painted, fixed up, repaired, you'll always get them rented."  French also says the stimulus package is helping some renters become homeowners.