Scurry County officials auctioned off 35 acres of subdivided county-owned land Tuesday to housing developers.
Since the discovery of a group of oil fields in West Texas, known as the Cline Shale, the housing market in the Snyder area has been booming.
The Scurry County Commissioners Court auctioned off the land to meet the housing demand.
"There’s been more people in town. The apartments are full, the RV parks are full, the motels are full, rent houses are full and so we feel that this is something there was a definite need for," Scurry County Judge Ricky Fritz said.
The county decided to make improvements on the land before selling it in order to speed up the development process.
Houses to be built on the land will be single-family homes. The county estimates finished homes will cost between $150,000 and $200,000. The minimum bid allowed on the land was $12,500.
"It doesn't matter if you're an apartment developer, a home builder, a retailer, all the things that this community's needed for a long time that’s gone to Abilene because it's a bigger city. Now we're getting a chance at because of the oil," said Bill Lavers, executive director of the Development Corporation of Snyder.
Some experts said the Cline Shale could hold about 30 billion gallons of oil. That makes it one of the largest groups of oil fields in U.S. history.
"If it really is what the experts say that it is, it is going to be phenomenal and it's going to be an exciting place to live, an exciting time to be here," Fritz said.
That’s why developers are snatching up the land in Scurry County before it's too late.
"It’s important to get in on the action in the beginning and not wait till price of land has doubled or tripled," said Senon Moya who purchased 12 lots during Tuesday’s auction for Falcon Quality Construction.
The Scurry County Commissioners Court said 22 of the 91 lots available were sold. Another auction is planned for the remaining land soon.