Developers Finding Successes, Challenges Of Downtown Tulsa Living
TULSA, Oklahoma - The option to buy versus renting in downtown Tulsa is still a niche market. Currently there are two main options, and they are at different ends of the price spectrum.
The 100 Boulder Condos start close to $200,000 for 800 to 900 square feet. The Urban 8 Condos in the East Village start at almost $900,000 with 3,500 square feet.
Several years ago, a Tulsa housing survey showed a demand for people wanting to purchase property downtown; now that's possible, and developers and finding both successes and challenges.
Urban 8, near 3rd and Greenwood, opened its doors in the fall of 2015, with each condo at 3,500 square feet.
"At Urban 8 we have eight units total and two are sold," said JoAnna Blackstock with Urban 8.
100 Boulder has been open since the fall of 2014 and the condos run from 800 to 900 square feet.
Developer, Joe Westervelt said, "We currently have eight residents in our projects and 18 total units."
He said, months into the project they realized something, “We found that our younger buyers, very early on, that some of our buyers could qualify for a mortgage but couldn't come up with a down payment to make their initial purchase.”
Now, they have a lease to own option - $1,200 a month with $600 of that going towards a down payment. After about three years you can close on the property. He said, it’s a better option for the millennial generation.
“They grew up in a time where you lease everything. It probably started with the cell phone, and I think, for them, the idea of leasing means flexibility,” Westervelt said.
Blackstock said they realize Urban 8 is the first of its kind downtown, and the concept will take some getting used to; but, she doesn't expect the $895,000 price tag to come down.
“Because of what this building took to do the infrastructure - with the geothermal wells that we have on each one, and the level of construction that the developer chose to go with - they didn't cut corners, and so that does contribute to the price, but the people that really want this lifestyle are seeing the value in that,” she said.
At 100 Boulder, if you decide to get out of your lease before ownership there is no penalty but you don’t get any money back.
As For Urban 8, we asked if they’re concerned the view is now a large apartment complex next door. They said no, because it gives it even more of an urban living feel.