What Do Montanans Consider Affordable When It Comes To Housing?
Over the last several years, many folks have decided to move to Montana which has resulted in home and rental prices skyrocketing. So much so that many locals can no longer afford to buy a home. This, of course, has caused much resentment and has also resulted in folks who were born and raised here leaving to live someplace more affordable.
This subject isn't new and has been discussed over and over, but now we are starting to see some action taking place. There are efforts being made to provide more "affordable homes" across the state, which will no doubt be welcomed by many, but it does leave one question.
What do Montanans consider to be affordable when it comes to the cost of a home?
Let's look at Bozeman for an example. Bozeman is the third largest city in the state and no doubt the most expensive to live in. While home prices have come down a little, the average median price of a single-family home is still over 800 thousand dollars according to our friends at Bozeman Real Estate Group.
Doing a little math and with the help of Google, the monthly mortgage payment on an 800-thousand-dollar home would run a little over 5000 a month on a 30-year fixed mortgage with a 7 percent interest rate. The truth is, most Montanans can't afford that, especially when you figure in the fact that the average Montana household income is 82,000 a year.
So, by those numbers using a basic mortgage calculator, an affordable home in Montana should be right around 310 thousand dollars with 60 thousand down. With that price point, I went to Zillow and did a few searches.
In Billings, there are multiple options with that budget, however, many of them are mobile homes or townhomes that could use some updates. In Bozeman, that budget will either buy you a plot of land to build a house, or a mobile home on a piece of property that you don't own. In Missoula, it's more of the same. You can either buy land to build, or you can purchase a used mobile home.
Once again, what do we as Montanans consider affordable? What is a price point that you think is fair? How are people supposed to buy a home or rent a place when their salaries don't allow it?
Let us know by sending us a message on our radio station app.