Denison's residential renovation program draw $7.5M in private investment

Michael Hutchins
Herald Democrat
Builders work to renovate a home in a screenshot of a Denison promotional video. Since it's launch three years ago, Denison's residential renovation program has seen 125 properties take advantage of incentives.

In recent years, the city of Denison has turned its focus to restoring and revitalizing its existing house stock through new programs and incentives. Now, three years later, these programs are bearing fruit for the community.

Denison city officials have announced that 120 properties within the city have taken advantage of the city's Residential Renovation Incentive program since it was first launched in late 2017.

"Since 2017, we've had more than 120 properties involved in that program," said Denison Chief Building Official Betty Floyd. "It is, and continues to be popular for people who are doing an extensive renovation on their property."

The program was initially launched with an expect end date in 2019. However, the popularity allowed the city to continue the program with no end date currently in sight.

Since its launch, the city has seen $7.5 million of investment in these properties, with 58 projects completed.

The program offers incentives for individuals who are undertaking residential renovation projects valued at $40,000 or more.

The city is offering a number of incentives for the property owners ranging from waived permit fees to reduced rental costs for roll-off dumpsters.

However, the largest incentive is a rebate on the property tax increase generated by the improvements. Property owners are able to file for a one-time payment one year after the project. The payment will be equal to 10 times the increase in the tax the would collect from the property.

As an example, Floyd said if a property paid $100 in taxes prior to the project, but then paid $500 after, it would be eligible for a $4,000 payment from the city. On average, these payments have come in at about $4,500.

The program has led to several large-scale projects, including some of the city's historic homes. As an example, Floyd said a 4,000-square-foot home recently received more than $200,000 of improvements under the program.

While some of the homes in the program do date back to the turn of the 20th century, Floyd said the majority are mid century, ranging from those built in the 1950s through the 1970s.

"We've got some houses in this program that were built in the early 1900s up to the early 2000s," she said. 

From the city's standpoint, it has bore fruit in the form of renewed residential units and increase values for its properties. City officials said the renovations have increased property values by an average of 213 percent.