North Dakota – The Best Housing Market No One’s Talking About
It doesn’t get many headlines, but North Dakota’s housing market is booming. In fact, realtors all over the country are jealous of the realtors in North Dakota!
Let’s start with Williston. With a population just over 16,000 and city limits that are only 7 square miles, odds are you’ve never heard of it. However, it’s the fastest-growing small city in America! An oil boom has caused a population boom (it’s more than doubled over the past two years). And with all of those new people has come a housing boom.
It’s not uncommon for apartments for rent in Williston to cost more than $2,000 per month – or, the same as what you’d pay for an apartment in Manhattan. Want to buy, instead? Most of the homes for sale in Williston cost more than $200,000.
But clearly this is the exception, right?
No way! An oil boom took over North Dakota’s entire economy in 2012. As a result, unemployment is below 3% statewide, and people are moving here from all over the country, in hopes of landing stable jobs. That means there is plenty of demand for the homes for sale all over North Dakota!
So, what does that mean for selling prices?
As you can probably guess, they’ve gone up considerably. Even when you include sales of distressed homes (like foreclosures and short sales, which are sold far below market value), North Dakota’s average selling price still went up 11.3% in 2012. When you remove those distressed sales from the mix, the increase was 12.9%. And, when you consider that the cost of living here is lower than the national average – meaning that your dollar goes a lot further here than, say, in California or Hawaii – it makes the increase even more impressive!
And, unlike other states, North Dakota’s prices aren’t “coming from behind”. Since this state never experienced a true housing boom during the mid-2000’s, it never saw its housing prices balloon out of control like most other states did. As a result, North Dakota home values didn’t have as far to fall when the recession hit. So, homeowners here don’t have a hole to dig out of.
Realtors in North Dakota say that inventory of available homes is scarce – but not because owners aren’t listing properties for sale. Instead, homes are being snapped up so quickly that there’s hardly anything to choose from at any given time!
As for the builders, they’re hard at work, too, trying to capitalize on the housing boom. But, just like the existing homes, new constructions are being purchased almost as soon as they hit the market.
If you weren’t talking about North Dakota’s housing market before, you sure are now!