By David Tuma
Medium home sales prices are up 23 percent from last year. Retail sales continue to go up and down for the year. In April sales tax rebates were down 7 percent. For the month of June the rebates received off retail sales were also down. For the year retail sales in Belton are up less than one percent for the year with $2,353.533 compared to $2,334,335. Temple is up 6.94 percent for the year with major retail development along FM 2305 in the Belton schools area.
Fuel prices have climbed up 29 percent since reaching a seven-year low earlier this year. Hotel-motel tax receipts are down 3.4 percent for the year. These numbers have went up and down since 2012. Overall they are up every year since 2012 but peaked in 2014 with $177,932 received.
In terms of housing starts Belton has not benefited as much from their quality schools in new housing starts compared to Temple. This year Belton’s numbers of new housing starts are starting to show some life. With 69 new homes under construction over the past seven months the city is close to 69 new starts this year. In 2015 the number was just 74 new homes built.
Belton’s homes are high quality in terms of new construction. The medium home sale price in Belton has risen from $153,490 in 2012 to $200,351 in 2016.
Homes are selling faster with less inventory available in Belton. The average month inventory of homes available for sale is down 33 percent compared to 2015.
New residential and commercial water taps installed are up 114 percent over last year. Belton is even with last year’s numbers. This is a sign of solid growth in both retail development and homes.
The price of gasoline is around $1.76 a gallon compared to 2014-$3.32, 2013-$3.10 and 2012-$3.24. These numbers are significant because this affects the middle class the most. This group fuels the economy. A significant drop in fuel prices allows them to spend more with businesses.
Unemployment in Belton is near historic lows at 4.1 percent.