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$70 a barrel oil – No Problem. Multifamily Project Moves Ahead in North Dakota Oilfield, Where Unemployment is only 2.8 Percent

Map of Bakken Shale in North Dakota.

Map of Bakken Shale in North Dakota.

WATFORD CITY, N.D., —  Silver Creek Apartments in the oil-rich Bakken Shale of North Dakota are being expanded.

With energy exploration at warp speed, the unemployment rate in North Dakota is 2.8 percent, the lowest in the nation. Shortages of labor and work force housing have developed.

The 10-acre Silver Creek site currently contains 44 completed modular studio apartments. Phased construction is slated to bring the property to 140 units by November 2015.

“With its location near the energy market and oil development in North Dakota, multifamily occupancy rates are high in this marketplace,” said Kevin Wolfer of Kennedy Funding Financial, which arranged financial for the project. “Corporate leases for multiple units are contributing to that trend, and with limited existing housing, rental rates are high as well.

“Manufactured housing is being utilized to help meet that demand, and this particular property also offers amenities that are not common at manufactured housing in the area,” he said. “This site also offers substantial upside potential with five additional acres for future expansion.

“While multifamily expansion is being driven to a large extent by the energy industry’s rapid growth in this region—with resulting low unemployment rates—multifamily properties in general remain a strong investment across the country,” said Wolfer. “Multifamily led the way in the rebound from the last recession and continues to outperform commercial real estate sectors.”

Silver Creek Apartments is situated with proximity to Highway 85 and Watford City’s rapidly developing commercial area in McKenzie County, in the Minot-Williston area.


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