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Analysis: Boise is the #1 housing market attracting out-of-state home buyers

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Boise is named as the #1 city that out-of-state homebuyers flock to according to

The study lists the top ten 2020 markets in home sales:

  1. Boise, Idaho
  2. McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, Texas
  3. Tucson, Ariz.
  4. Chattanooga, Tenn.
  5. Columbia, S.C.
  6. Rochester, N.Y.
  7. Colorado Springs, Colo.
  8. Winston-Salem, N.C.
  9. Charleston-North Charleston, S.C.
  10. Memphis, Tenn.


The study notes this year’s list shows a trend of people moving from expensive coastal cities to more affordable areas inland. Nine out of ten of 2020’s hottest markets are not on the coast.

Boise was placed in the 8th position last year according to "Boise is seeing an influx of out-of-state buyers looking to enjoy the city’s amenities at a lower price point compared with places such as California," a press release on the study stated.

The study also notes that home sales in these top ten are expected to increase by 2.4 percent and prices 3.1 year-to-year.

And it all comes down to inventory.

“Many of the markets on this year’s list are late bloomers in the current housing cycle, meaning they still have plenty of inventory and prices are within reach -- a rare combination in recent years,” said George Ratiu, senior economist, “Additionally, a number of the top markets in 2020 are welcoming an influx of buyers from nearby large cities that have become crowded, expensive and lack sufficient inventory.”

The Boise Trend

Median home price: $295,000

Home price change: + 8.1 percent

Sales change: +0.3 percent

Combined sales and price growth: + 8.4 percent

The Study States: Idaho’s capital city has seen a boom in population over recent years, having nearly doubled in size since 1990. Many of the city’s newcomers are transplants from more expensive coastal cities. Boise is home to a mild four-season climate with a vibrant community that actively takes advantage of the area’s easy access to mountains, rivers, lakes and parks. A strong school system, thriving job market and top-notch healthcare draw a diverse crowd to Idaho’s capital. A favorable tax structure -- which includes relatively low sales and property tax and no state Social Security tax -- as well as relatively affordable housing has made this area popular for retirees as well as young professionals. Boise is no stranger to’s Top Markets List, it was No. 8 in 2019.


Buyers have more choice

With inventory at historically low levels nationwide, says home ownership has become challenging, especially for first-time buyers. In the top 10 markets, limited supply is a new issue and the total stock of inventory remains plentiful and in a good position to absorb growth.

Sister cities

Many of the markets on this year’s list are smaller cities that are handling overflow from nearby larger cities that have become crowded and unaffordable.

University towns

The majority of top markets are home to a college or university. This is likely due to the fact that many schools are creating incubators to nurture entrepreneurs and start-ups, helping to fuel local job markets.

Retirement boom

According to, Baby boomers are looking to spend their years in a warmer climate and escape the high property tax rates that are common in the Northeast. Arizona, North Carolina and South Carolina do not tax Social Security retirement benefits, making these states attractive to older buyers.

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For full study results, click HERE.

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