2022 is now in the rearview mirror, and thankfully for a lot of us, right? It was a year of challenges from illness ravishing households between COVID and the flu, to the rising costs of just simply living. A lot of people saw their rent payments go up, their mortgage rates increase, and the cost of food skyrocketed throughout the year.

So glad 2023 is here so we can hopefully find our way back to how things were.

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Not so fast says Amarillo National Bank. Every year, they release a financial forecast based on various factors they see, and it didn't exactly paint 2023 to be any better than 2022. So much for that "hope for the new year" feeling right?

The report from ANB showed inflation continuing, bankruptcy filings increasing, and home prices rising even more. These things were determined based on current, local data showing Amarillo's current strengths and weaknesses.

William Ware, President of Amarillo National Bank stated, "We see the Amarillo economy slowing down in 23′ because the trend started about mid-year last year, we see that continuing throughout the year, this year.” Yeah that's not the best-case scenario right there, is it?

Mortgage rates have DOUBLED since 2020 and that has directly impacted homeowners and renters for that matter. People are having to pay historic rates for their homes, and that's making it harder for some to afford their home and also making it difficult for homebuyers to find something they want or need within their budget.

There was some semi-good news in the forecast though. They said that Amarillo had been less impacted by housing price increases, but they caution that it could steady out. The job market in Amarillo remains strong, which is great news as that means unemployment rates may stay down.

Ware gave some insight on the cost of things such as food and gas stating, "If commodity prices stay high, we’re going to be okay if we get a little rain, that’ll help the crops tremendously, and then energy price of oil is high and around here, the price of gas is good and that’ll really buoy the area in 2023.”

Here's to hoping that the forecast is wrong in certain parts, and correct in others.

Downtown Amarillo Over The Years

Downtown Amarillo has seen an incredible metamorphosis. Take a look at the photos below to see just how much it's changed--you won't believe the difference.

Untouched by Time: The Historic Homes of Polk Street Then & Now

You know you've entered Amarillo's historic district once you hit the red brick roads of Center City. A unique reflection of past and present, Amarillo's historic homes seem to pose pristinely against the curb.

These large, thoughtfully designed historic homes are part of the most beautiful neighborhoods in Amarillo. But most residents will agree that nothing quite tops the staggering royal beauty of the grand homes of Polk Street. Built by Amarillo's founding fathers, the looming estates of South Polk are a sight to behold.

Check out these stunning comparison photos that show how these gorgeous structures have remained nearly untouched by time.

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