1. Inventory is Low
The number of homes for sale in Bozeman is at the lowest point in the last six years. While there are always seasonal decreases in inventory in the winter months, 2017 saw the lowest inventory in Bozeman since 2011. This could be attributed to several factors, for one, the significant increase in Bozeman home prices has kept many homeowners from upgrading to larger and more expensive homes. Since home prices have increased so drastically, many homeowners can’t afford to make the jump. Another factor is that while the population is increasing steadily year over year, the number of people moving out of the area is low. With demand and prices at an all-time high, many existing residents simply don’t want to sell.
2. High Prices in Bozeman Are Pushing Buyers to Other Markets
Home prices in Bozeman have been growing at a staggering rate, increasing nearly 60% since 2012. With the average price of a home in Bozeman priced over $400,000 the only choice for many buyers is to look for a home in the surrounding areas. While home prices in Livingston, Belgrade and Manhattan have also seen substantial increases over the last six years, they still remain significantly lower than in Bozeman. Currently, the average price of a home in Livingston is just over $300,000, in Belgrade homes cost an average of $287,000 and Manhattan the average cost of a home is just under $340,000. While the number of sold homes in Bozeman has decreased 5.6% in the last year, the number of homes sold in Livingston has increased 22.6% and the number of homes sold in Belgrade has increased 12.8%. To read more about home prices in the areas surrounding Bozeman, click here.
3. Lots of Development Happening Downtown
The popularity of downtown Bozeman has spiked in recent years thanks to the thriving businesses, restaurants and galleries that call it home. As they say in Bozeman, “Life is Downtown.” In 2017, we saw developments like 5 West, the Nebo Lofts, Willson Residences and the Hawthorn Place Condominiums hit the market with high price tags. The average price of a condominium in the 5 West development on Mendenhall was $699,667, the average price of a Nebo Loft was $667,000, a unit in the Willson Residences cost an average of $820,000 and the first Hawthorne Place Condominium on the market is currently listed at $649,000. As it seems, the development in downtown Bozeman shows no signs of slowing down. This year, the controversial Black Olive project got the green light, the Lark Hotel is building a five-story addition, plans have been filed for a five-story 110 room hotel on Broadway and East Main, the future of the Emerson Lawn is pointing towards development, and the site of the old City Center Inn is set to be developed into a hotel as well. Times are changing, that’s for sure. Read more about Bozeman's downtown developments here.
4. Buyers Are in Search of Investment Properties
Many buyers are looking to capitalize on Bozeman’s growth as they look for investment properties in and around the city. The number of multi-family units sold in Bozeman increased 71% in the last 5 years. With limited inventory, multi-family homes in Bozeman spent a median of just 11 days on the market. Reasonably priced condos & townhouses along with homes close to Montana State University are also appealing investment properties for many buyers. The trick these days is getting a good price!
5. There's a Surge of Real Estate Agents in Bozeman
A thriving real estate market brings real estate agents out of the woodwork, and that has certainly been the case here in Bozeman. With more than 80 real estate brokerages and nearly 600 real estate agents with offices in Bozeman, it is a full house. So how do you decide who to work with? We believe that actions speak louder than words. You want to find an agent and an office who align with your goals and plans for the future. Honest, hardworking people are not hard to come by in Bozeman so you are in the right place!
6. Upward Pressure on Interest Rates May Spur Early Buying in 2018
With interest rate increases on the horizon in 2018, buyers are expected to come to the table earlier than usual. Generally speaking, the buying season hits its peak in the summer months but this year we expect that buyers may be looking to buy before the peak. If you are planning on selling your home in 2018, you may want to consider putting it on the market earlier in the year.
7. Homes are Moving Fast
Back in 2011, homes in Bozeman were spending an average of 119 days on the market. Now, that number has decreased by nearly 50% with homes in Bozeman spending an average of 63 days on the market, the lowest point in the last six years.
8. Unique Properties are Getting Multiple Offers, While Cookie Cutter Homes Tend to Stay on the Market Longer
Thanks to both the pre-recession and recent building booms, Bozeman has a large number of spec homes and new builds that follow similar floor plans and neutral styles. As a result, when a unique or custom home comes on the market, it often moves quickly. Some developers have caught on to this trend and have started incorporating unique, modern and creative elements into their spec homes like this one or this one.