A coupon program designed to entice home buyers in Derby was tabled by the Derby City Council this past week. It will be back on the Aug. 28 agenda.
The program was on the county agenda for its Aug. 14 meeting, but numerous residents asked to speak to the council on the issue of a zoning change for a new Menards. The council meeting had already lasted over three hours when the item came up, so it was tabled to leave adequate time for potential discussion at a later date.
The city has been considering an incentive for home purchases since March when the Wichita Area Builders Association suggested a five-year tax rebate to kick-start new home purchases. After extensive negative feedback on that program, local real estate agents suggested a simple coupon program would generate interest in all local housing purchases, said Kathy Sexton, city manager.
She said real estate agents indicated the major incentive was not necessary to entice buyers. Sexton has recommended the city institute the coupon promotion to provide $1,500 in cash incentives to the first 10 buyers of new or nearly new homes who qualified for the program.
When compared to cities with an incentive program, sales of new and nearly new homes in Derby are lagging behind. Sexton said three area communities with incentives are reporting significant increases in new home starts.
In Augusta, the increase compared to 2011 levels is 300 percent, followed by Maize at 275 percent and Haysville at 133 percent. Haysville also offers a $1,500 incentive which goes toward closing costs or to future water and sewer bills, Sexton said.
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