9 min read Feb 06, 2024

Montana Real Estate Market: Predictions for 2024

Montana homes continued to sell at eye-popping prices last month. The median home sale price rose 6.4% year-over-year from $497,000 to $529,000 in September.

The number of homes listed on the market declined by 5.9% YoY from 1,275 to 1,200 homes, with only 4 months of supply. Does the scarcity of houses make Montana a seller’s market? Let’s look at the facts.

Kalispell homes sold for a median sale price of $525,000 in September, up 5.21% year-over-year. Homes in Whitefish sold for a median sale price of $962,000, a 20.25% increase year-over-year. There were a few markets in Montana where prices declined year-over-year.

Interest rates are at record highs, with few home buyers. But the inventory is so low that only 24.10% of homes sold below the list price!

  • If you are a home buyer: You can avoid bidding wars and avail seller concessions if you buy a home now. The 8.5% interest rate and mortgage payments are significant, but rates are unlikely to drop in the next few months. If they do, you can refi.
  • If you are a home seller: You can lock in Montana’s high home prices. The scarcity of homes in MT makes it a seller’s market. Homes listed on MLS sell faster and for 17.5% more than off-MLS homes. That could be thousands of dollars in additional proceeds if you sell via Houzeo.

The current Montana real estate market statistics reflect the national trend of high demand and low supply. Despite the strong housing demand, home sales tanked. The property prices in Montana have increased regardless.

So, How is the Real Estate Market in Montana?

Sluggish! Home values in Montana rose by 64.01% in the last 5 years.

But, home sales decreased by 16.3% in September 2023 YoY. Maybe due to the mortgage rate climbing to a two-decade high of nearly 8%! And the number of houses for sale in MT was 826 in the month, 22.4% less than in 2022. Montana’s housing market is bearish.

The decrease in home sales can be attributed to not having enough properties in the Badger State. The months of supply is 4.4 month, which makes MT a seller’s market. So, if you want to sell a Montana property, now is the right time to list it on MLS.

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Montana Real Estate Market Statistics

  • Average Home Prices: The average median home price in Montana is $529,000, up by 6.4% YoY. In 2024, the median sale price will keep increasing marginally due to MT’s tight inventory.
  • Home Sales: As per September 2023 data, home sales decreased by 16.3% YoY! In September 2023, only 1,050 homes were sold, down from 1,254 in September 2022.
  • Average Rent Prices: Rental costs vary statewide. An average tenant in Milwaukee pays $1,313, while the one living in Appleton pays $1,550.
  • Median Days on Market: The median days on the market for homes for sale was 65 days, up by 1 day YoY.
  • Pending Sales: The number of homes for sale declined by 22.4% YoY compared to 2022. Currently, there are ~1,000 homes for sale in Montana.
  • Months of Supply: The average months of supply is 4 month. MT’s demand can’t be satiated with the low supply. MT’s house scarcity is worse than the national housing market.

Montana Housing Market Predictions 2024

Montanans have survived the shockwaves of skyrocketing mortgage rates and rising home prices of 2023. Here’s what we predict for Montana’s housing market:

  1. Home Sellers Will Return to the Market in 2024: Sellers who chose the sidelines in 2023 will come back. Especially those who can’t avoid new jobs or want to move to a cheap place. Whitney, the analyst who predicted the 2008 financial crisis accurately, has forecasted that baby boomers looking to downsize will also add up to 30 million housing units. Yowaza!
  2. Mortgage Interest Rates Will Stabilize by the 2nd Half of 2024: Mortgage rates hit 7.79% in October 2023, the highest level in 23 years. However, the rate dropped to 7.35% in November due to the softening labor market and slowing economy. Even the annual inflation rate went from 3.7% to 3.2%. We think the rates will remain above 6%, but they will stabilize in the second half.
  3. The Number of Home Buyers Will Rise: The historically high interest rates averted buyers in 2023. But mortgage demand rose after the interest rates lowered to 7.35% in November. The easing inflation and stabilizing rates will bring back house hunters.
  4. Home Prices Will Continue to Rise: Home prices rose steadily in the top metros across MT YoY, reaching $529k in September 2023. Experts predict home prices will continue to rise until the low supply-high demand dynamic changes.
  5. New Home Constructions Sales Will Increase: 12.3% of homes purchased in September were new homes, the highest since 2022. Home builders offered $30,000 worth of concessions to attract buyers in 2023. We think builders and sellers will compete for buyers in 2024.
  6. iBuyers Will Continue to Make Lowball Offers: iBuyers offered 104.1% of market value in 2021. They offered 86% in 2022 and around 70% in 2023. Opendoor and Offerpad have lost billions of dollars in 2023. As they struggle to survive, they will make lowball offers.
Bonus Prediction: Buyer Broker Commissions Will Be Negotiable!

In a shocking turn of events, the jury in Missouri awarded more than $5 billion in damages to the Sitzer-Burnett plaintiffs. This motivated nationwide home sellers to file grievances against NAR’s Cooperative Compensation Rule.

NAR’s Cooperative Compensation Rule or Participation Rule states that listing brokers must offer competitive compensation to buyer agents if they want to list properties on an NAR-affiliated MLS.

Sitzer/Burnett v. NAR

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Lawsuits like Moehrl, Gibson, Batton, Nosalek, and Batton 2 challenge the Participation Rule. They accuse NAR and other top real estate companies of colluding and conspiring to keep agent commissions high.

If the jury also finds the defendants guilty in these cases, buyer agent compensation may change. Buyer agents may become obsolete by 2025! Phew.

While buyer agents are unlikely to be obsolete in 2024, they may be open to negotiating commissions. That’s probably how they will still have some skin in the game.

When Will the Housing Market Crash in Montana?

A housing market crash in the Badger State is unlikely.

Montana’s robust economy, diverse job market, and affordable cost of living will continue to attract businesses and individuals seeking new opportunities.

Kalispell’s population has increased by 15.7% YoY. Helena is the second fastest growing city in Montana, with its population surging 5.6% YoY. Montana is famous for its stunning natural beauty, abundant wildlife, rich history, and outdoor recreation opportunities.

Montana’s job market is also strong. The unemployment rate is at 2.8%. The median household income is $60,560. Living near the rolling hills and verdant forests of Montana is relatively affordable. It is unlikely that Montana’s housing market would crash anytime soon.

2024: Is it a Buyer’s or Seller’s Market?

2024 will be a terrific market for sellers. (And buyers, too!)

Home prices in Montana are rising and will continue to rise till the supply-demand dynamic changes. The number of houses for sale in MT was only ~1,000 in September 2023. There is very limited inventory to satiate the demand from house hunters. This also makes it the best time to sell a house in Montana.

In fact, after the mortgage rate plummeted from a two-decade-high rate of 8% to 7.35% in November, new listings rose. This shows that those who refused to sell due to mortgage rate lock are finally acclimatizing to 7% rates. Come Spring 2024, more homeowners will follow suit and list properties on Montana MLS.

As home listings in Montana increase, home shoppers hugging the sidelines will also return. In fact, the recent uptick in mortgage applications shows that buyers are returning.

House hunters who could not find affordable homes in 2023 will also start shopping in 2024. The demand for Montana houses will increase – and that’s why sellers may be able to dominate the market.

However, new builds will compete for attention from buyers. Home builders have persuaded buyers to buy new construction homes with mortgage buydowns worth $30K in 2023! Builders will continue offering concessions in 2024, and home sellers may have to wage wars against them.

Listings of new constructions, baby boomers looking to downsize, and desperate home sellers will flood the market in 2024. The properties for sale in Montana will increase. So, whether you are looking for a condo in Madison or seeking to live in a co-op in Janesville, you will find your dream home next spring.

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Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It does not constitute an offer, solicitation of an offer, or any advice or recommendation. Houzeo doesn’t provide any legal or financial advice. The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Houzeo Corp., its affiliates, or its employees. However, the author does not make any representation or warranty, express or implied, as to the information’s accuracy or completeness, nor does the author recommend that the attached information serve as the basis of any investment decision.

Frequently Asked Questions about Montana Real Estate Market

When will the housing market crash in Montana?

Not for the next few years. Montana's housing market will not crash in 2024. Despite 2023's skyrocketing interest payments and soaring home prices, Montanans have managed to keep the market afloat.

What are the real estate housing market 2024 predictions for Montana?

2024 will be a stellar market for Montanans. Here's our 2024 forecast for Montana housing market are: (1) Home sellers will return to the market come Spring 2024. (2) Number of houses for sale will increase (3) Property prices in Montana will increase marginally (4) Mortgage rates will stabilize in the latter half of 2024 (5) iBuyers will buy homes for lower than their fair market value. (6) Buyer agent commissions will be negotiable!

Are home prices dropping in Montana?

No, the property prices in Montana were up by 3.1% YOY in December 2023. However, you can still find some of the cheapest places to live in Montana. With a 64.01% rise in the past five years, exploring budget-friendly cities is crucial amid the current scarcity of available properties in MT.

Is it a good time to buy a house in Montana?

Yes! Currently, there are very few buyers in the market compared to the supply of homes in Montana. The soaring interest rates has kept buyers at bay, so you can avoid bidding wars. As the mortgage rate stabilizes in 2024, more buyers will return, so we'd recommend you to buy a house now. If mortgage payments burn a hole in your pocket, you can always refinance.

» Best Time to Buy a House in Montana: Find out the best time to buy a Montana property & plan your finances accordingly.

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