Boise Metro Housing Market Monitor
May 2018 Update
Here's what you need to know about buying or selling homes in the Boise Idaho area. I track here the last 10 years of trends and indicators in the Boise housing markets to help you make general decisions on the timing of buying and selling property. Save this to your favorites and check in monthly. Also see my quarterly newsletter.
SW Idaho Homes & Real Estate-
Ada County- Boise, Meridian, Eagle, Kuna, Star
Canyon County- Nampa, Caldwell, Middleton
It's prime time to sell. May and June are when the most buyers are looking. It could not be more of a seller's market with the lowest housing supply readings I've ever seen throughout the Treasure Valley. Demand is very strong and I see no sign of slowing yet. Ask me what your house is worth.
Can it also be a great time to buy? Well, yes! I see home prices going higher (many metros are appreciating faster) and no local bubble (our home prices are lower than most metros and well below the national median). Interest rates have risen slightly, but are still historically very low. Our local wages have also increased faster than the nation recently, making affordability less of a concern.
Ask me what you can buy today.
Massive Shortage of Homes For Sale in Boise Metro
This 10-year history of available homes for sale in Ada & Canyon counties really shows how extreme conditions are right now in the Boise Metro and SW Idaho housing markets. The post-recession trend has been toward fewer available listings each year as population grows and homes sell so fast- with average days on the market of just 20 (Ada) and 22 (Canyon) days on existing homes sold in April.
These are active listings in Ada & Canyon County, Idaho on the first business day of each month, including all types of single-family homes, both existing & new construction (several hundred are to-be-built or under construction- see my pie charts below).
This chart begins a year after the June 2007 real estate peak, when sellers greatly outnumbered buyers and homes stayed on the market longer. The recovery began in 2011 and our market had stabilized by 2014. Since then, fewer and fewer homes have been on the market, as demand has outpaced listings.
This extremely low number of homes actively for sale, is nothing short of a guarantee that Boise area home prices will continue to rise quickly.
Q1 2018 Quarterly Median Home Prices- Ada/Canyon County
These are the largest first quarter price increases I've ever seen!
For the first quarter, the Ada county median existing home price of $273,650 was up a remarkable 9.46% from the previous quarter. Year over year in Ada County the median is up 21%.
I cannot resist pointing out to renters that owning the median priced home in Ada county Idaho for the last year would have added over $50,000 to your net worth. I see no signs of slowing, so it's not too late to ride the wave. You cannot afford to wait for interest rates to rise- call me today to buy a home.
Canyon County's median existing home price of $185,000 for Q1 is up 5.11% from the previous quarter. Year over year, the Q1 median is up 16.35% in Canyon County!
I use only existing homes to gauge housing prices, as new construction is much more volatile. I also ignore meaningless monthly prices. Quarterlies are much more reliable and indicative of long-term trends in home prices. Be careful... these stats have limited relevance to an individual property, as some segments perform better or worse. Ask me for a free market analysis on your property. I would be happy to estimate sale price and proceeds.
Boise ID Metro- Home Sales
Home sales have followed the typical seasonal trend, but the peaks and valleys are consistently moving upward in these charts.
Homes sales have been in a very solid upward trend since 2008 in Ada County, including the cities of Boise, Meridian, Eagle, Star & Kuna. Given the still low interest rates, strong local economy, low relative home prices and low cost of living we enjoy in SW Idaho, I don't see this trend changing yet.
Canyon County home sales have also been in a solid upward trend over the last few years. The largest cities of Nampa, Caldwell & Middleton have all seen strong home sales as new people move in and affordability pushes people farther out from Boise. That big dip was the snowpocalypse of 2017- the worst winter in 30 years.
These charts show all monthly single-family home sales reported in the local MLS, including condos, townhomes, manufactured homes, new construction, short sales and repossessed homes.
Supply & Demand Drives Home Prices
Pending homes (next month's sales) are the best forward-looking indicator of demand. Dividing actives by pendings, we get a supply in months that is very reliably predictive of future trends in home prices. According to NAR, a 5-6 month supply of homes for sale is a balanced housing market where prices are stable or slowly rising and neither buyers nor sellers have a distinct advantage. If you want to know where home prices are going in any local market, look at supply levels.
Here's the local picture of supply & demand with Ada & Canyon counties combined. Once again, NAR's table proves out- with supply tighter than ever at less than one month, prices are up double-digits in both Ada & Canyon counties. This is why I expect strong home price appreciation to continue in the Treasure Valley.
Can we build our way out of the shortage? Yes, but developing new subdivisions for homes to be built takes time. Also, prices on new construction remain substantially higher than existing; for April the average new home sold for $85,000 more than existing homes in Ada County and $39,000 more in Canyon County.
Ada County, Idaho
Including the cities of Boise, Meridian, Eagle, Star and Kuna, here's an overview of the Ada County housing markets looking at trends in supply, demand and inventory levels of homes for sale.
The make-up of homes for sale changes constantly. Regular sellers of existing homes tend to follow seasonal trends with most listings mid year during optimum selling and moving weather. Here's the same data in a line chart showing the recent history.
Regular sellers of existing homes are unmistakably trending downward over the last 3 years as demand continues to build and not enough homes are listed in Ada County.
The new construction segment continues to strengthen, but not many homes getting finished unsold in and around Boise Idaho. Notice the large recent increase in homes under construction, as builders are working hard to meet demand. There are new subdivisions in the pipeline, but no danger of out-pacing demand soon. With 654 new homes for sale on May 1st in Ada County, this represents less than a 3-week supply at the current pace of sales, based on the 992 under contract.
Foreclosures and short sales are very rare in Ada County now. Home prices in the Boise area have risen consistently for years now, causing few owners to get into trouble while upside down and unable to sell. Don't be fooled by the big websites that show all these pre-foreclosures in the Boise area- very few actually go back to the bank or are even sold short.
The crown jewel of the Treasure Valley in SW Idaho, Boise is the largest housing market and typically leads the way in local real estate trends.
Boise had 450 existing home sales in April (Med $259,900 Avg $310,701 Range $22,000 - 1,730,000 Average days on market 17)
It seems our hidden gem has been discovered, now the fastest growing city in the nation. As you can see, inventory has never been tighter in Boise. Pending homes again greatly outnumber homes for sale, making the supply barely half a month.
This charts shows the count of active and pending home listings on the first day of each month for the last 10 years. This includes all types of single-family homes: condo, townhouse, manufactured, stick-built with and without acreage.
These pie charts show the breakdown of all active homes for sale on the first day of each month. Boise had only 523 total homes for sale on May 1st and many of those aren't even built yet.
Located in the center of the Boise metro area, Meridian is destined to grow simply by location. Meridian is about half the size of Boise, but very similar in price.
Meridian had 157 existing homes sold in April (Med $279,900 Avg $298,263 Range $78,750 - $610,000 Average days on market 17)
Once again, homes under contract greatly outnumber the active listings in Meridian. The supply/demand balance is tighter than ever. I would not bet against brisk appreciation in Meridian home values in 2018.
Meridian had 377 total homes listed for sale on May 1st and less than 40% were existing homes and many aren't even built yet.
Just northwest of Boise between the Boise River and the foothills, Eagle is the higher-priced community in the Treasure Valley.
Eagle had 58 existing homes sold in April (Med $399,900 Avg $479,907 Range $57,000 - 1,500,000 Avg days on market 53)
The number of buyers in the higher price ranges is naturally lower, so the lines in my chart had not crossed for Eagle, until now. This is a major milestone and sign of a red-hot market here in 2018. With only a 1-month supply of homes for sale in Eagle (lowest ever), look for home prices to go higher in 2018.
Eagle had 201 (up from April) total homes for sale on May 1st and were evenly split between new and existing homes available.
Star Idaho is a rising star in the Treasure Valley with river valley/rolling hills topography. Many people (especially retirees) relocating to Idaho are choosing this still-quaint little town for it's lower prices (compared to Eagle), relatively short commute and a great name.
Star had 26 existing home sales in April (Med $285,950 Avg $370,907 Range $199,000 - $1,150,000 Avg days on market 36)
Star's housing market is tight as can be with active listings drying up and pendings trending higher each month. By all indications, Star home prices should continue to climb in 2018. Now is the time to buy, before the big Q2 jump in prices.
Star had only 77 total homes for sale on May 1st, also fairly evenly split between existing and new homes.
Kuna has the lowest home prices in Ada County, making it popular for first-time buyers and investors. Located just 10 miles south of Meridian, Kuna has a cute little down town and many starter level homes under 20 years old. Many people are choosing Kuna over longer commute and higher property taxes in Canyon county.
Kuna had 45 existing home sales in April (Med $209,507 Avg $230,356 Range $165,000 - 365,000 Avg days on market 15)
The lines have not just crossed in Kuna as homes under contract have exploded here with the spring rush. With less than a 1-month supply of homes for sale, look for home prices in Kuna to continue climbing.
Kuna had 120 total homes for sale on May 1st and only 20% of those are existing homes! Just drove around Kuna last week and homes are being built everywhere.
Canyon County, Idaho
Canyon County covers a large rural area of small towns. I focus on the metro area- Nampa, Caldwell & Middleton. My numbers may not match others' stats for the whole county, but I take the same readings every month, which works for identifying general trends.
Canyon County usually has a similar percentage of regular sellers to Ada and also very few foreclosed and short sales. New construction is not as strong here- probably because of affordability as incomes are lower here.
New home sales are gaining in Canyon County, but not booming- only 98 sold in April. As of May 1st, only 22 completed and unsold new homes awaited buyers in the whole county.
Nampa is the largest city and main traffic hub (Caldwell is county seat) of Canyon County. Home prices have been jumping double-digits here too.
Nampa had 176 existing home sales in April (Med $197,750 Avg $217,803 Range $45,000 - 749,900 Avg days on market 16)
Pending homes again greatly outnumber those actively for sale in Nampa. Now with the valley's tightest housing supply reading at 2 weeks supply, this should push Nampa home prices even higher in 2018. Better buy soon!
Nampa had 245 total homes for sale on May 1st and the highest percentage in the valley of existing homes on the market. Builders are not keeping up with growth here.
Caldwell is one of the more affordable areas in the Boise metro area. Centrally located and the county seat, this is a growing city.
Caldwell had 95 existing home sales in April (Med $180,000 Avg $208,906 Range $65,000 - 895,230 Avg days on market 33)
Again pendings outnumber actives, and the resulting supply of homes is less than 3 weeks. Home prices will keep climbing in Caldwell in 2018 with a big jump in Q2.
Caldwell had 150 total homes for sale on May 1st, falling about 10% from April, and now evenly split between existing homes and new construction.
Middleton is at the far northwestern edge of the Boise metro. Small town but growing with very affordable home prices and many homes with acreage.
Middleton had 31 existing home sales in April (Med $215,000 Avg $274,582 Range $105,000 - $610,000 Avg days on market 16)
Middleton home sales are booming with pendings outnumbering actives. Look for home prices to really jump this year in Middleton.
Middleton had 64 total homes for sale on May 1st with a shrinking new construction segment, due to the high demand.
All charts are based on MLS data, deemed reliable but not guaranteed, searching all single-family housing types in the Boise-Nampa Metro, new and existing, including stick-built, homes with acreage, condos, townhouses, manufactured homes on rented lots and with land.
Thanks for your interest. Why settle for just an agent? I am a broker, licensed in Idaho, and Realtor since 1991 specializing in residential real estate for sale including homes, condos, townhouses, manufactured, acreage, land, lots, property. I serve Boise, Meridian, Eagle, Star, Kuna, Nampa, Caldwell, Middleton, Ada County, Canyon County, Treasure Valley and Southwest Idaho.