May 29, 2014

Grady cities listed on best places to own home list


A recent study found two Grady County communities to be some of the best to live in when it comes to home ownership. 

Nerd Wallet used an algorithm that looked at multiple socioeconomic facets of communities in Oklahoma to determine the success found in Tuttle and Blanchard. 

Blanchard ranked 8 out of 100 communities on the list and Tuttle came in at 19.

"I think it shows that there is value to living here," Tuttle City Manager Tim Young said. 

The survey found 85.4 percent and 83.4 percent of homes in Blanchard and Tuttle respectively, were lived in by those who owned the homes. 

"I'm really not surprised," Blanchard City Manager Robert Floyd said. "The fact that we are close in proximity to Norman and Oklahoma City, plus the availability makes Blanchard a great place to raise a family." 

As is the case with any growing community, both city managers said their cities are facing the task of keeping up with infrastructure issues as they grow. 

Young said Tuttle is in the fist phase of expanding a sewer system, which will allow the construction of homes on smaller lots. 

"There is a big interest in large homes on small lot sizes in our community," he said. "People are learning when they buy a large piece of land they spend four hours of their Saturday mowing." 

Floyd said increasing Blanchard's availability to water is his primary concern, but the issue is being addressed. 

"We get 100 percent of our water from Oklahoma City," he said. "If that line breaks, we are out of water. Last night our council passed a motion issuing $5.4 million in sales tax and revenue bonds for infrastructure." 

Floyd said the city plans to strike a deal with Newcastle to create a redundancy in water movement. 

A 500,000 gallon water tower and improvements at the city's waste water treatment plant are also in the works.

"From a water standpoint, this should take care of us for some time," he said. 

As for retail improvement, both Floyd and Young said they will need the residents to substantiate commercial business, but expect many improvements over the next few years.

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