House flipping in Nampa and Boise isn't as easy as the experts make it look

Posted at 1:11 PM, Aug 14, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-15 14:31:09-04

If you would have told a Boise resident even just a few years ago that their city would soon be listed as Forbes' fastest growing, they may not have believed you.

Here we are. Boise is booming, and so is home price growth, which is up by over 11.5% for 2017, also according to that Forbes list.

That's why it came as quite the surprise to some local house flippers and renovators when another study this one by WalletHub, ranked Nampa in second and Boise in third on their list of best cities to flip houses.

Among the surprised, the stars of HGTV's Boise Boys, "It's very difficult to find houses to renovate in this market, absolutely, the inventory is so low," says Clint Robertson.

And if that isn’t assurance enough, Jill Hella, another local house flipper and Keller Williams Real Estate Agent says, "As the market has changed it has become harder and harder."

They say the study would have been a little easier to believe 6 or 7 years ago.

"I know, you know hindsight is 20/20, I look back and think my gosh if I would've been in the business of flipping houses back in 2011 and 2012 it would've been really easy," says Hella.

Not only was it easier then, but also cheaper, Luke Caldwell says, "Really just in the last few years something's changed because obviously in 2011 and 2012 you could pick up for, even in Boise, under $100,000."

But demand has grown in that seven years, so prices are following suit. Nampa ranking just under three points shy of Sioux Falls South Dakota, which ranks number one.

Of course, the study took some other things into account, like cost of renovations, yet Nampa still holds that second place position for that portion of the study.

"The houses are worth less out there, well and availability too, exactly, and I think that ultimately Boise is only so big, it's not like this massive metropolis, and so I think people are realizing I'm going to have to go outside the city a little bit,” says Caldwell and Robertson.

And Boise falling just a few spots. But despite the hardship of the home search, both flippers and renovators say there will always be homes.

"There's always gonna be someone, a distressed owner for some reason, where they need to move, maybe they've got a sick family member, new job, yeah or a distressed house,” says Caldwell and Robertson.

They just might have to put in a little more sweat to find them.