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Median Price Of Missoula Home Reaches Record High In 2018

House for sale.

Missoula’s housing market continues its red-hot streak in the latest local housing report.

The median price of a Missoula home reached a record high last year of $290,000. That’s an 8-percent jump over 2017 and one of the findings of this year’s Missoula Housing Report, released Thursday by the Missoula Organization of Realtors.

MOR’s Brint Wahlberg says 2018 marked the eighth straight year the median sales price increased in the Garden City.

“What we’re seeing is the continued crunch of supply and availability in housing is causing our median sales prices to continue to climb. And what we’re seeing statistically is people are continuing to paying as close to full price or over full price as we have seen at any other point in our real estate market.” 

During a press conference Thursday, Wahlberg said the most sales activity is found in the $175,000 to $375,000 range.

“That is the area where we have the least amount of supply and the most amount of demand and activity. When you look at our report, I believe it’s the $275,000 to $350,000 range is kind of the king of where the most amount of our residential sales occurred last year.”

And that can be a heavy lift in Missoula, where many local families struggle to afford a median-priced home.

Missoula’s rental vacancy rate, meanwhile, increased from 3 to 4 percent last year and most rental types saw some kind of price decrease. 49 percent of people in Missoula’s city limits are renters.

As local homeowners had a median income of almost $76,000 in 2017, renters’ median income declined from $31,000 to almost $30,000 dollars.

And Jim McGrath of the Missoula Housing Authority points out nearly half the community’s renters spend over 30 percent of their income on rent.

"And so with half the community renting we see a large portion of our population losing ground in affordability. And that’s a pretty serious thing."

O’Brien first landed at Montana Public Radio three decades ago as a news intern while attending the University of Montana School of Journalism. His first career job out of school was covering the 1995 Montana Legislature. When the session wrapped up, O’Brien was fortunate enough to land a full-time position at the station as a general assignment reporter. Feel free to drop him a line at
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