Boise, ID Real Estate Market Trends & Analysis [Updated 2020]

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The Boise real estate market was perhaps the unsung hero of the last recovery, and the capital of Idaho shows no signs of slowing down—even as a pandemic sweeps across the globe. In spite of all that has happened across the country, in fact, real estate in Boise appears ready and willing to carry over the momentum it generated from a decade’s worth of growth into the rest of 2020 and beyond. Due—in large part—to a strong economy, high demand, and competitive prices, the Boise housing market hasn’t experienced any major setbacks yet.

“For the most part, the market is very very active,” said Trevor Knesal, a real estate agent in Boise. “You see the numbers of unemployment, millions of Americans losing their jobs in April. Our median home prices are up double digits in percentage, so our market is alive and well and thriving.”

All things considered, the Boise real estate market is setting the bar in today’s constantly evolving landscape. While uncertainty still persists, the city appears more able to weather the storm than just about any other city, which bodes well for the local housing sector. As a result, buyers, sellers and investors appear well-positioned to capitalize on the active market.

Boise Real Estate Market 2020 Overview

  • Median Home Value: $341,449

  • 1-Year Appreciation Rate: +10.3%

  • Median Home Value (1-Year Forecast): +0.4%

  • Median Rent Price: $1,475

  • Price-To-Rent Ratio: 19.29

  • Boise City Unemployment Rate: 2.2% (latest estimate by the Bureau Of Labor Statistics)

  • Population: 228,959(latest estimate by the U.S. Census Bureau)

  • Median Household Income: $56,798 (latest estimate by the U.S. Census Bureau)

  • Percentage Of Vacant Homes: 6.70%

  • Foreclosure Rate: 1 in every 20,521 (0.4%)


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Boise housing market

2020 Boise Real Estate Investing

The Boise real estate market has remained incredibly active, despite the spread of the Coronavirus. In fact, business—at least in the real estate industry—is as usual. Prices continue to increase in the face of rising demand, which bodes well for the entire Boise real estate investing community. Few cities, for that matter, have enjoyed higher returns on investment in the first part of 2020.

“Among 108 metropolitan statistical areas with at least 1,000 single-family home and condo sales in the first quarter of 2020, those in western states continued to reap the highest returns on investment, with concentrations on or near the west coast. Metro areas with the highest home seller ROIs were in San Jose, CA (81.8 percent); San Francisco, CA (67.7 percent); Seattle, WA (63.6 percent); Spokane, WA (61.8 percent) and Boise, ID (59.1 percent),” according to Attom Data Solutions, a leader in online real estate information.

Investments in the Boise real estate market appear to be paying off, which begs the question: Is now a good time to invest in Boise real estate? Is there still room for a profit after so much appreciation has already taken place? The answer is simple: yes.

Flipping real estate remains an attractive exit strategy, but it’s true: home value appreciation has eaten into profit margins over the last 10 years. Finding deals below market value is harder than in recent years. That said, the Boise housing market appears to be more suitable for passive income investors. Otherwise known as rental property owners or buy-and-hold investors, passive income investors are the beneficiaries of several positive market indicators:

  • Interest rates on traditional loans are historically low

  • Years of cash flow can easily justify today’s higher acquisition costs

  • A 19.29 price-to-rent ratio suggests high home prices will increase rental demand

The idea of building a rental property portfolio is perhaps more attractive than ever before. Despite high home values, borrowing costs are much lower—historically low, in fact. In an attempt to stimulate the housing market in every city across the country, the Federal Reserve has dropped interest rates to near all-time lows. As of April, the average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate loan was 3.31%, according to Freddie Mac. April marked the lowest average mortgage rate for an entire month ever. While rates have already increased slightly in March, they are still historically low, and significantly reduce the cost basis of buying a home.

Lower mortgage rates make the prospect of buying a home with traditional financing more attractive. That said, there’s another way for real estate investors to justify buying a rental property in today’s market: cash flow. Several years of cash flow can warrant an acquisition at today’s high prices. With a median rent price of $1,475, many long-term investors should be able to pay down their mortgage using someone else’s money.

In addition to low mortgage rates and cash flow potential, the city has a price-to-rent ratio that leans heavily in favor of investors. At 19.29, the price-to-rent ratio in the Boise housing market suggests homes are too expensive. Subsequently, fewer people can afford to buy, which simultaneously drives up rental demand and the amount landlords are able to charge.

The Boise real estate investing community is lucky to have a number of viable exit strategies at their disposal, but none appear more attractive than building a proper rental property portfolio at the moment. Too many important market indicators are pointing towards becoming a buy-and-hold investor to ignore.

2020 Foreclosure Statistics In Boise

Real estate in Boise has enjoyed a decade-long ascent, which has all but eliminated any sort of foreclosure crisis. In fact, the growing equity, strengthening economy and growing jobs market in recent history has led to only one in every 20,521 homes being foreclosed on; that comes out to a foreclosure rate of 0.4%. At the time of this writing, there were only 42 foreclosures in the Boise real estate market, according to RealtyTrac.

As recently as April, “the number of properties that received a foreclosure filing in Boise, ID was 95% lower than the previous month and 88% lower than the same time last year,” according to the online real estate information company.

For context, the country (as a whole) has a1.0% foreclosure rate. “In April, the number of properties that received a foreclosure filing in U.S. was 70% lower than the previous month and 75% lower than the same time last year,” according to RealtyTrac.

For all intents and purposes, foreclosures have been on the decline for a while. However, the presence of COVID-19 is expected to increase the number of distressed homeowners across the country, and the Boise real estate market is no exception.

While it is still too early to tell exactly how the foreclosure industry will unfold over the course of 2020, it is fair to assume there will be an increase. Forbearance programs should keep homeowners in their homes for the next few months, but they are only temporary. Sooner or later, mortgage payments will need to be made current, and those who can’t afford to keep up with obligations could find themselves distressed. As a result, there may be an influx in foreclosures in the next 12 months. And while foreclosures aren’t expected to rival other cities, an increase may mean more buying opportunities for local investors. Those who position themselves well today and line up financing could find the latter half of 2020 to be a great time to acquire a deal.

2020 Median Home Prices In Boise

Few cities—if any— have had their home values fare better than those in the Boise real estate market over the last decade. In the wake of the Great Recession (the first quarter of 2012), the city’s median home value bottomed out around $150,000. However, in the time since the recovery began to today, real estate in Boise increased in value at a pace few cities could keep up with. From its lowest point of the Great Recession to today, the median home value in Boise has increased 127.6%. Riding a wave of increasing sentiment, improving economic conditions, and a lack of inventory, the median home value in Boise is now a healthy $341,449.
Over the first part of 2020, there wasn’t a single qualifying city with larger increases in home values.

“Among metropolitan statistical areas with at least 1,000 single-family home and condo sales in the first quarter of 2020, the biggest year-over-year increases in median home prices were in Boise, ID (up 21.9 percent); Milwaukee, WI (up 19.1 percent); Panama City, FL (up 18.4 percent); Salisbury, MD (up 15.4 percent) and New Orleans, LA (up 13.9 percent),” according to Attom Data Solutions.

To put things into perspective, the median home value in the United States is $248,857. In the time the city’s median home value appreciated 127.6% (March 2012 to May 2020), the median home value in the Unites States increased 54.5%.

The differences in home values may largely be attributed to the last few years of appreciation. In one year’s time (April 2019 to May 2020), the median home value in Boise appreciated 10.3%, more than just about every other city in the United States. The national average, on the other hand, increased 4.1% over the same period of time.

It is worth noting that appreciation ratesare expected to temper moving forward. Unlike the rest of the country, however, Boise home values are expected to continue rising, even in the midst of a pandemic. On a national level, the median home value is expected to drop about 1.5%. The median home value is actually expected to increase 0.4%. While nowhere near the previous year, the fact that home values are expected to increase at all serve as a testament to the strength of the local housing market. Very few cities are forecasted to post increases in their home values over the ext 12 months, but the Boise real estate market appears poised to lead the pack.

To be clear, home prices had already increased due to a lack of available listings. However, the presence of the Coronavirus has prevented builders from adding more inventory to the market. The lack of “new builds” could actually continue to drive up prices in the Boise real estate market once all of the dust settles. Therefore, anyone looking to buy may want to consider sooner rather than later.

Boise Real Estate Market: 2018 Summary

  • Median Home Value: $253,358

  • 1-Year Appreciation Rate: 12.7%

  • Median Home Value (1-Year Forecast): 4.8%

  • Median Rent Price: $1,350

  • Average Days On Market: 40

  • Unemployment Rate: 2.9%

  • Median Household Income: $53,353

  • Number Of Foreclosures: 156

Boise Real Estate Investing 2018

The Boise real estate market became the single greatest beneficiary of Idaho’s booming economy in 2018. Appreciation rates outpaced the national average, and there was nothing to suggest they wouldn’t continue to today. For all intents and purposes, there wasn’t a healthier real estate market across the whole country. That said, the Idaho capital wasn’t able to escape the same inventory shortage plaguing the rest of the country at the time. Nonetheless, there was still demand for housing despite prices going up.

The median home price was roughly $253,358, but that doesn’t tell the whole story. At their price points, homes were 12.7% higher than they were the previous year, and showed no signs of slowing down. In fact, appreciation rates have set historical paces up until today. Even in 2018, Boise was one of the fastest growing cities in the country, and today looks no different.

Boise Real Estate Market: 2015 Summary

  • Median Home Price: $178,700

  • 1-Year Appreciation Rate: 12.7%

  • Unemployment Rate: 4.1%

  • 1-Year Job Growth Rate: 1.4%

  • Population: 214,237

  • Median Household Income: $49,583

Boise Real Estate Investing 2015

According to Boise real estate news, the capital of Idaho had already recovered from the Great Recession quite nicely by 2015. Real estate in Boise saw an increase in price growth of more than 25.0%. At the same time, equity gains made the market a very desirable place to live. Positive trends favored real estate investing as well. Low unemployment numbers, increased job growth and a below average local foreclosure rate all added to the Boise housing market’s appeal.

The median home price was about $178,700. While below the national average of $203,867 at the time, appreciated at a rate of 12.7% over the previous year. In the three years leading up to 2015, real estate appreciated by as much as 42.7%, well above the already impressive national average. Values may have been below the national average, but they were growing at what turned out to be a sustainable pace. In fact, 2015 paved the way for the Boise housing market today.

The city’s unemployment rate was a healthy 4.1%, which was down from 5.2% the previous year—both were lower than the national average at the time. What was even more promising, however, was the rate at which local jobs were growing. The twelve month job growth rate reached 1.4%, which only slightly trailed the national average. A strong local economy and sustained employment gave buyers confidence—just what the Boise real estate market needed in 2015.

Boise County Map:

Map of Boise neighborhoods

Boise Real Estate Market Summary

There’s no doubt about it: The Boise real estate market is one of the strongest in the country, both before and after the introduction of the Coronavirus. Whereas many cities are expecting home prices to go down and activity to cease, real estate in Boise has pushed forward. That’s not to say the pandemic won’t impact local real estate; it will. Builders have been unable to work during the quarantine, and therefore haven’t helped the inventory shortage. As a result, the city may see prices continue to rise in the face of growing demand. Therefore, investors may view now as the prime opportunity to acquire a deal.

*The information contained herein was pulled from third party sites. Although this information was found from sources believed to be reliable, FortuneBuilders Inc. makes no representations, warranties, or guarantees, either express or implied, as to whether the information presented is accurate, reliable, or current. Any reliance on this information is at your own risk. All information presented should be independently verified. FortuneBuilders Inc. assumes no liability for any damages whatsoever, including any direct, indirect, punitive, exemplary, incidental, special, or consequential damages arising out of or in any way connected with your use of the information presented.
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