BOISE, Idaho — Home prices in Ada County hit a new record high median of $363,000 in January, according to the Boise Regional Realtors group. They say the high prices are due to an increasing share of new home sales -- and a lack of supply of existing homes, compared to demand.
The group points out that the Ada County housing market has been shifting to a “new norm,” with new construction sales gaining more and more of the total market share. In January, new construction sales made up 40.2 percent of all sales -– that’s an 8.2 percent increase from a year ago. New homes are typically priced higher primarily due to increasing cost of land, labor, and materials. In January, the median sales price for new construction was at $419,440 -- up 12.2 percent from the same month last year.
“Persistent demand (as indicated by pending sales) compared to the record low of number of existing/resale homes for sale in January, 2020 also drove up prices for the existing/resale segment and in turn, the overall median sales price,” according to a BRR news release.
Reports point out there were only 361 existing homes available to purchase at the end of the month -- down 28.1 percent from January 2019, while pending sales were up 5.4 percent year-over-year. In January, the median sales price for the existing/resale segment was at $340,000, up 18.7% from the same month last year.
“Rising prices and fewer options can be discouraging for those looking to buy, but it’s important to note that the median sales prices noted here are based on sales activity for single-family homes with or without acreage. As a reminder, the median sales price is simply the point at which half of the homes that sold during the month sold for more, and half of the homes sold for less,” the release said.
"Buyers believe they can't get into a home -- and they can. Interest rates are at historic lows so, what a home was ten years ago, they can still buy today with our prices. So that’s the good thing. The bad part is there’s a lot of competition for the homes that are out there,” said Boise Regional Realtors President Michelle Bailey.
BRR’s market reports have traditionally focused on single-family activity only, but there are additional property types available. For example, in January, there were 39 townhomes that sold in Ada County for a median sales price of $264,500. This left 45 townhomes available for purchase at the end of the month.
While condos, townhomes, and mobile/manufactured homes are a small part of the area’s overall housing supply, realtors say these property types may offer buyers additional options at lower prices.