To Sell it Yourself . . .or Not

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Buying Boise Homes, Home Knowledge, Housing Market, Real Estate, Real Estate & Housing, Selling Boise Homes, Selling Homes

Selling Your Home on Your Own. . . To “DIY or Die Trying”?

“We thought we didn’t need realtors to help sell our house because we found our own buyer. Now, after listening to you go over our contract to purchase, we don’t feel like we protected ourselves on our sale. I guess we didn’t realize that was an important part of the process, and now, we wish we had hired an agent to protect us as sellers.” —Phil and Kelly Owens, For-Sale-By-Owners sellers turned Buy-Boise represented buyers.

There are homeowners who decide they’re ready to try buying or selling on their own. We recommend evaluating all the pros and cons of such a significant decision first. Confidence may be brought by increased access to information offered by the internet, or the “seller’s market” we’re in.

Do-it-yourself or DIY sellers would be right to declare that it’s not rocket science and no single step is too large to tackle. In a seller’s market, there also may be more room for error (assuming more sellers than buyers go off on their own).

 Some of these stories unfold with success, and some with the worst kind of losses (or the best, depending on how you look at it)… the unknown losses.

 There’s also more to a deal than the average person knows, if they’ve worked with agents in the past. Every deal includes a variety of terms and deadlines that experienced agents should have down pat, based on  sheer number of deals completed, continuous education and their consistent immersion in the intricacies of the market.

 I’m in the service industry and identify myself as a representative of and advocate for my client and not a commission-chaser, so this topic is a tricky one for me to try tackle, yet an irresponsible one for me to ignore. I’ve seen successful realtor-free transactions, but then hid my cringe at some of the terms in other seemingly “successful” transactions. The lesson here – sometimes it works. With my clients, it’s my job and responsibility to ensure that its’ not only going to work, but also work well, and in the best interest of my client. I also strive to make sure we’re worth our weight in gold, in terms of the value we provide.

Here are a ten reminders of what we do, with worthwhile considerations if you’re contemplating going at it alone on one of the biggest transactions life tends to bring:

  1. Value. We provide service in a way that it brings as much value to the client as possible. In some cases we simply try to earn it, in other scenarios, our service pays for itself. We’re skilled, conscientious and working hard on your behalf. We’re also well aware that not all Realtors can say the same and that’s disappointing.
  2. Zillow data is not known for accuracy.  Sites like Zillow and trulia are helpful for buyers to online shop, but fall short in terms of accuracy, because the information is derived purely from public records, like your tax assessment, because that information is made available for free, compared to a paid-for membership site like the invaluable offering that agents participate in, that is the multiple listing service.  Zillow’s prized ’Zestimate’ is based  soley on a flat formula (an algorithm) that does not take into account the how the desirability of certain parts of town or highly sought-after school districts substantially impact property value. If it were that easy to price property or determine value, tax assessed values would measure more closely to market values, and they don’t. Sure, give it a look, knowing it’s not your substitute for real-time MLS updates on market activity, agent-provided analysis, and the specific knowledge of an industry expert who can point out these subjective factors that impact pricing in the marketplace.
  3. Price isn’t the only term in a contract. It can be nice to have someone on your side, who has expertise at screening offers, avoiding unfavorable terms and helping you land as closely as possible to your target (with less trial and error). That said, hopefully a realtor helps you get the full fair market value.
  4. Not all buyers are equal. At one glance at a contract, an experienced agent can see a story starting to unfold, and help you respond or negotiate accordingly.
  5. Finding a Buyer isn’t the Hardest Part - it is one item, of many important things to take care of in the sale.
  6. A good deal is a good deal for everyone. Agents are obligated by ethics to play nicely and Sherri and I take that obligation seriously. We act in the best interest of our client to get them a good deal, without alienating the other party, or making them feel like they are not getting a good deal.
  7. Knowledge first. Negotiations second. We know the market, the contracts, the ins and outs, what’s fair and what’s attainable and can counsel clients on the pros and cons of aggressive versus attractive pricing. We help sellers choose a price that will set them up for success.  We’ll advise on practical preparations and have saved many clients from spending too much money on unnecessary home repairs (carpet cleaning versus carpet replacement). We’ve also saved clients from putting their house on the market before it was ready to attract the most amount of attention possible.
  8. Recommendations. If you’ve worked with us, you’ve heard me discuss the value of a home inspection, the importance of a quality, local lender who can get us to the closing table on time and reminded about items worth of discussion with an accountant, attorney or the county (e.g. the homeowners exemption office). You’ve also likely been provided the names of providers we trust from experience.
  9. Connections. This includes, but is not limited to the 3,000 realtors exposed to listings on the MLS.
  10. Ease. We watch the contingencies, manage the deadlines and escort you all the way to the closing table. 

Thanks for reading! As always, don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions you may have!


Shana Moore, Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional and source of real estate market trends in Boise IdahoSherri Battazzo Signature

Shana Moore & Sherri B

Your Boise Market Trend Experts



Unlocking Tax Tips for Homeowners

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Home Knowledge, Local Boise Price Charts, Real Estate, Real Estate & Housing, Selling Boise Homes, Selling Homes, Tax Tips

Maximize Your Tax Deductions!

Who doesn’t love to save money when possible, or get hard-earned money back at the end of the year, as the case may be at tax time? This article is meant to help homeowners maximize their returns by offering tips worthy of talking through with an accountant or tax attorney. I’m neither an accountant nor equip to give tax advice, but here’s what I have learned . . .

Real estate write offs and tax deductions

Mortgage Interest Paid– Mortgage interest is deductible on first homes, second homes and even equity lines of credit (if and only if that equity line was indeed used to improve the home). $1 million loan limit applies plus $100 thousand limit for home equity debt).

For new homeowners, the mortgage interest tax break will be larger, since the ratio of interest to principal paid is heavier in the early years of a loan. See below.

Example scenario:

$112,000 Loan at 4.25% interest
Principal and interest payment: $550
Around $50 per month more goes toward principal in year 5 than in year 1 (that’s nearly 10% in this example).
$1,700 in principal was paid the first year and $2300 will be paid in the fifth year.


Taxes –Local and state taxes can be deducted on our Federal Taxes. If these are paid through escrow, keep in mind it’s only the actual disbursement that is deductible (not the amount pulled into your escrow account).

Home office deduction – This applies only to the square footage that is used specifically and only for business or business-related storage. Your home office can be your only office and cannot be combined with another office deduction outside of the home. My accountant has advised diligence in these details, as it’s an area the IRS could be inclined to watch more closely.

Selling costs – If you sold a home in the 2014, the selling costs can be deducted from the gain from sale.  Examples include repairs, title insurance, advertising expenses, real estate broker’s commissions, and inspection fees. Repairs need to have been made within 90 days of the sale and clearly for the intent of marketing the property.

Capital gains taxand the two out of five rule. If your home is your primary residence for two of the last five years, up to $500,000 in profit from the sale of a home may be tax-free (if married/filing jointly). A new purchase is NOT needed to claim this tax benefit! You can also claim certain repairs to reduce your capital gains on the sale, if  they were made within 90 days of the sale and clearly made for the intent of marketing the property.


Real Estate Caital Gains Tax Chart

Homeownership has tax advantages. Particularly if you’re selling a home you’ve lived in for 2 of the last five years. The next best scenario is to hold it for at least one year for long-term capital gains taxes.

Points – If you pay points on a loan, these are deductible as the IRS sees them as “prepaid mortgage interest.”

PMI (Private Mortgage Insurance) is deductible.Moving Costs – If you had to find a new home because of a new job that is located more than 50 miles away from your old home, you may be able to deduct your reasonable moving expenses.

Casualty Losses – If losses are large enough (more than 10% of your income), the portion not covered by insurance could be a deduction. Documentation in the form of photos, videos or receipts can be key in times of loss, both for insurance and tax purposes.

Documentation reminder at tax time – Smart phones and tablets make it easier than ever to document the contents or condition of your home. This can help in times of loss.

The benefits of homeownership carry through to tax season. So do the benefits of having a good accountant on your side, who reminds you to track all of these deductions.  Hopefully, a good realtor also is a part of your household’s team and hopefully I have been, or will be that resource for you.

If you know anyone who is ready to sell their home, I would much rather work for them, than work on my taxes, so please, have them give me a call!


Shana Moore, Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional and source of real estate market trends in Boise Idaho



Shana Foster Moore

Your Boise real estate resource


2014 Market Trends Report

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Boise Market Trends, Buying Boise Homes, Housing Market, Idaho Real Estate Price Trends, Local Boise Market Update, Local Boise Price Charts, Market conditions, Market Trends, Market Updates, Real Estate, Real Estate & Housing

Was 2014 a good year for homeowners?

“What happened in real estate in 2014 and what can we expect in 2015?”

This time of year, we’re answering questions about the real estate market from a wider perspective, that looks beyond the current month-to-month stats and examines the overall market trends in Boise and the nation. In short, 2014 was a good year for homeowners.

In fact, 2014 was the third year in a row that I’ve had the pleasure of communicating good news about pricing and equity for homeowners. This has enabled owners the freedom to move around a bit. The average price was up about 6% this year, 17% last year and 13% the year before that.

This comes amidst other good news statistics, as well as ongoing and interesting reactions to the Great Recession. For one, there are more renters and fewer homeowners. Data suggests a seeming tentativity to enter home-ownership, despite low interest rates, recent government incentives and an overall upward trend in pricing.

To illustrate 2014 in terms of real estate housing market trends, and divulge what to expect in 2015 we’ve pulled the data below from the 2015 Idaho Real Estate Summit hosted by the Ada County Association of Realtors, and of course, our own client experiences.

Boise’s housing market was not far from the national housing market trends, which are show in this slide from the 2015 Idaho Real Estate Summit. Source: Ada County Association of Realtors.


Jobs have the biggest impact on any local real estate market, including the housing market here in Boise. Job growth trends in Boise have been favorable, mirroring the national trends, according to Lawrence Yun, the Chief Economist and Senior Vice President of Research at the National Association of Realtors.

Household net worth also is at an all-time high, reports Yun. Homeowner households tend to be 31-46 times the net worth of renter households, however our rate of homeownership is decreasing. When asked to make forecasts, Yun obliges – his predictions are below the job growth chart.

What’s next in 2015

Lawrence Yun suggests we’ll see:

  • More jobs, as well as a slightly increasing job-quitting rate
  • Manageable mortgage rates, increasing slowly and reaching 6% by 2016
  • Population growth and a pent-up demand for housing
  • Record high household wealth
  • More starts, sales, growth in prices, and transitional/erratic lending policies which should return to “normal” by 2016
  • Improving business opportunities in the commercial sector

On a more immediate and local scale, we’ve seen a winter slowdown following the previous period of rising home prices. Inventory requires patience from our buyers (us too, but it’s my job to be patient). We’re reaching out to sellers, in part because we need some inventory to present to our buyers.

Housing Market Trend Update

 UPUpward Market Trends

  • Sales in 2014 were up in all price points above $160,000, when compared to the previous year
  • Median home prices have been on the rise in Ada County over the past year
  • Jobs are the biggest factor influencing the housing market and jobs in Boise, and the nation have been on the rise
  • Renter households also are on the rise nationwide
  • Existing home sales
  • Boise area housing permits

    Boise real estate price charts

    Source: Ada County Association of Realtors, as presented at the 2015 Idaho Real Estate Summit


Arrown indicating downward market trends in Boise's housing marketDOWN

  • Sales in 2014 were down in all price points below 160,000, when compared the the year prior
  • Now, and at the end of 2014, inventory has been down. This can be typical this time of year.
  • Homeowner households and the overall rate of home-ownership decreased alongside an increase in renter households


Static Boise real estate market trendsSTATIC

  • There is pent up demand for homes priced below $160,000 – this is a trend that first started being noticed back in 2006.
  • America’s Gross Domestic Product has been low – below 3% for nine years now. This was among the market indicators Lawrence Yun pointed out at the 2015 Idaho Real Estate Summit.

Thanks for reading. All that data leaves me ready for a break to go skiing! I’d recommend you do the same – it’s a beautiful time of year to take off for a spontaneous Bogus Basin visit. If you’re hungry for more market info, or an analysis of how these market trends are affecting your home’s value, please don’t hesitate to give me a call!


Shana Moore, Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional and source of real estate market trends in Boise Idaho



Shana Foster Moore,

Your resource for Boise market trends (and more)





You Deserve Real Results

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Moving in Idaho, Real Estate, Real Estate & Housing, Selling Boise Homes, Selling Homes

What to Expect from Your Agent

Have you ever wondered about an MLS listing missing photos or critical information. Or why your neighbor sold their home for so little. Or why a house sat on the market longer than it seems like it should, given the house’s price and appeal compared to overall market conditions. Sometimes I’m amazed by the evidence that a hard-working agent could have made the difference in the results.

You deserve great results, solid market information and helping-hand style customer service when working toward the biggest sale of your life – a home. Here are some things to look for when choosing an agent to make sure you’re not setting your sight too low.


  • Availability. Are they available to work with your schedule and responsive to your calls and emails?
  • Information with experience. Are they experts in all elements of real estate, including the art of making and keeping a good deal, adapting to adversity, and keeping things on track when all does not go perfectly smoothly?
  • Market knowledge. Do they understand the market and are they going to seek that careful balance between your wants and needs, while providing insight on the opportunities and limitations of the current market? Do they drive traffic to your listing?  Do they check out houses to personally seek out pertinent information that might be missing from the listing (e.g. an unlisted shop or bedroom)?
  • Understanding. Are they listening to and hearing your needs, answering your questions, understanding your goals and helping translate your interests into opportunities, while striving to be helpful? Your agent’s primary interest should be your goals.
  • Pressure-free. Are they helping guide you toward your desired direction without pressuring you to make a decision that’s inconsistent with your goals, or the less than what the market can do for you.

What Else to Expect from Me

As those of you who have worked with me before already know, or have said here in my reviews on Zillow, I’m not afraid of hard work and extra efforts to help a deal succeed. I like to go above and beyond. . To me, it’s not about making a sale – it’s about making the sale work for my clients because, as those in the service industry should understand, I’m happy when they’re happy. What does this mean in details? Here’s some extra things I do with my clients.


  • Insight – I maintain a blog to share my market trend knowledge, insights and tips, but when working together, you’ll receive individual information pertaining to your house or the areas you need guidance. Leveraging more than a decade in the industry,  I can run the numbers with you, share my resources and local connections and point out reasons not to buy into a deal, if I see something that you miss.
  • Creativitiy. Creative, professional photos accompany each listing, in addition to flyers, placement on Zillow and well-written descriptions. Adaptive deal-handling skills.
  • Availability X 2 – You have double the coverage and resources because I partner with Sherri B, the active broker at Buy-Boise Real Estate Group. Our clients get two of us for the price of one.
  • Responsiblity. I take responsibility for researching the price points, helping you prepare your home for sale and helping you evaluate your opportunities and determine which next steps are most reasonable for you. It’s my goal that you have a good experience and my responsibility to do what I can to facilitate that.
  • Extras – it’s hard to summarize what the “extras” might be in any scenario, but I know them when I see them and am not afraid to take on the extra expense, effort or work. It’s my goal to make sure your house is ready to sell when the parade comes through. For buyers, I’ll take extra time with you on the process, followed by extra steps to make sure your offer is going to receive all due consideration (and then some) – sometimes by writing a personal letter other times through solid negotiations to help ensure that the right deal isn’t lost due to details.

If you’re considering selling your home, or interested in assessing your readiness in terms of an equity standpoint, we should talk. Value assessments are part of my job.


Shana Moore, Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional and source of real estate market trends in Boise Idaho



Shana Foster Moore,

Your Caring, Local Boise Real Estate Agent


Cashing In

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Housing Market, Local Boise Market Update, Local Boise Price Charts, Market conditions, Market Trends, Market Updates, Moving in Idaho, Real Estate, Real Estate & Housing, Selling Boise Homes, Selling Homes

Cashing In: The Costs of a Sale

Those accustomed to moving, or 11.7% of the population in any given year according to Census data, seem to understand that moving carries a cost. Buyers understand there are costs involved with buying – down payment, closing costs, initial repairs or improvements and maybe a new couch that fits the new space.

A lesser known fact is that selling a home also carries a fairly standard set of inherent costs. Greg Kester of Pioneer Title breaks it down, “The seller is usually paying for anything associated with the sale, to show they have a sell-able, insurable property where the buyer is usually paying for anything to finance that home.”

Seller costs can be less intuitive, or more surprising, but a good rule of thumb is to budget 8-10% of the price of the sale to be safe.

Seller-paid costs

  • Real estate commissions -this is not a fixed number for all real estate companies, but Buy-Boise charges 6% to sell your home, 1/2 of which is given to the Buyer’s agent’s brokerage
  • Title insurance – also a percentage based on the price (.5% or less)
  • Settlement fees – usually split 50/50 with buyers and $680 or less
  • Unpaid taxes (billed bi-annually), irrigation fees, dues or assessments

Other potential costs to sell a home in Idaho

  • Capital gains tax (if there was a profit, and the home was not owner-occupied 2 of the last 5 years)
  • Seller-paid repairs
  • Seller paid closing costs
  • Transfer of security deposits and rents (for an occupied rental property)

Seller-paid closing costs have been trending up in Idaho. I started noticing it back when the Boise real estate market conditions took a big dip, but the idea seemed to gain traction, even as the market recovered. Buyers find it attractive more so than sellers, who already face some costs of selling.

Buyers often choose this form of negotiation because it decreases the amount they have to bring the closing table dollar-for-dollar in a lending situation. A reduction in purchase price only reduces “cash to close” by a percentage, in financing situations. It also affects the monthly payment ever so slightly.

“Whether it’s a buyers or sellers market can really determine whether buyers are asking for closing costs,” says our Pioneer Title expert Greg.

Costs to Buy a Home in Idaho

  • Down payment
  • Closing costs (loan origination, documentation, settlement fees  recording, pre-paid insurance, etc)
  • Appraisal – paid by the buyer about 60% of the time
  • Home inspection

A home tends to account for our biggest life purchases, and then one of our biggest sales. It’s important to fully understand all the numbers when making decision about selling your home, and evaluating the costs and profitability of a change.

For more information, please don’t hesitate to email me, or comment with your individual questions.


Shana Moore, Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional and source of real estate market trends in Boise Idaho

Shana Foster Moore

Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional

Boise Real Estate Market Trends Update

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Buying Boise Homes, Housing Market, Idaho Real Estate Price Trends, Local Boise Market Update, Local Boise Price Charts, Market Trends, Market Updates, Real Estate, Real Estate & Housing, Selling Boise Homes

Real Estate Market Trends Update

Last month, Boise was named the “Best City to Move to in 2014” because of our ‘Median Income” “Home Value Growth” and “Home Affordability”.

That said, a look at the latest real estate market trends shows pent up demand for the most affordable homes – those priced below $160K. As more homes in that category come online, some of the trends showing in our “up and down market update” also may adjust a bit, including year-to-date sales.

Until August, we were almost keeping up with the strong year-to-date sales trends from 2013. It’s not too late to match last year though, things slowed significantly in the last quarter of 2013. We have strong potential if homes priced under $160K, open the door and let first time home buyers into the market.

I’ve personally witnessed some decent negotiating power lately – more than in recent previous months. And, in situations where multiple offers are probable, the power of making business personal has gone a long way. Introducing sellers to their buyers through photos and letters has sparked interest in passing along their home to those who will adore it as much as the owners, who often are sad to let it go.

In summary, the homes market trends in Boise homes have been going up in price but down in sales. We’ve been tracking interest as well, expecting that very subtle increases eventually will add up enough to affect buying power. So far, interest is fine.


Real estate market trends in Boise, according to the Ada County Association of Realtors.

Your Up and Down Market Trends Update

Up!Upward Market Trends

  • Days on market – one more than last year, six more than last month.
  • Sales - home sales priced above $160K are up (and there is a demand for homes priced lower).
  • Median home prices – Our August-to-August and year-to-date home prices are up 9.5% and 8% respectively.
  • The number of houses available for sale is up 2% from last month and 20% from last year.
Source: Ada County Association of Realtors

Down! Market trends down

  • Pending sales have lagged behind last year for 13 months in a row.
  • Sales between July and August were down 11%. Typically there is an increase in sales between these months. Last year, the increase was 8%.
  • Overall home sales- due to the drop in sales of homes below $160K, single family home sales are down year-to-date and when compared to last year at this time.
  • New homes sold – new homes sold are down 25% from last year and 25% from last month.  
  • Existing home sales -existing home sales are down 8% from last year.
Source: Ada County Association of Realtors

Static. Static Boise real estate trends

  • Inventory – at 3.8 months, inventory is static compared to last month, with homes priced below $160K being in shortest supply.
  • Growth was consistent across the price categories, with the exception of homes priced above $250K.

Thanks for reading and allowing me to keep you up-to-date on your local market price trends, housing trends and market indicators. Please don’t hesitate to contact me for a specific home pricing evaluation.


Shana Moore, Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional and source of real estate market trends in Boise Idaho



Shana Foster Moore

Your Local Real Estate Market Trends Connection

Boise Real Estate Market Trends + Up and Down Update

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Boise Market Trends, Housing Market, Idaho Real Estate Price Trends, Market Trends, Market Updates, Real Estate

Boise Real Estate Market Trends

Last Spring brought a huge boost for Boise’s real estate market trends. The grandeur of this spring’s boost is yet to be determined, however (insert drum roll here) inventory is up.

Since I had to report the opposite for so many consecutive months, I’m saying it again. Inventory is expected to continue to grow through the end of Summer, according the Ada County Association of Realtors (ACAR), who provides a plethora of punchy data that I share with you.

There’s always a caveat with data. While the number of houses available for sale is up, the boost is in the $200,000 + price range and the 4.5 months of inventory we currently have on hand is actually down a bit from March. Furthermore, many of my North End Boise buyers aren’t necessarily going to see the effects of this data in that highly-desired area that has its own price trends.

Homes under $119,000 are in shortest supply and homes over $500,000 are at a 15-month supply level, with $200,000 being the median price.

Up and Down Update – Boise Housing Market Trends



-Median home prices in April are $209,450, up 12% from April 2013.

-Median home prices for the year are up 10% over last year.

-Sales revenue is up 12% from March, not as much as expected. In April 2013 sales jumped 28% from March, kicking off a strong spring and summer.

-Inventory is up. The number of homes for sale is up 13% from March and 35% from last year at this time.

-Pending sales have moved ahead of 2012 numbers for the first time this year, although their down from 2013.


Market trends downDOWN 


-First time buyers are closer to 30%, compared to 52% in 2010

-Number of sales, are down 8% compared to April 2013 and 1% compared to 2013

- Days on market are down two weeks from March and very similar to April 2013

-Pending sales

-Distressed sales are now at 7%, down 1%


Side arrow showing real estate dataSTATIC 


-The most popular price points remains $120,000-$200,000.

- Median pricing is holding at the $200,000 level, but may rise with the temperatures.


-Quality inventory in the North End. This is the heart of my territory and a highly-desired area. Here are few recently houses listed by Buy-Boise in North and Northwest Boise (I’d like to add a few more).

Home for Sale in boise's north end, listed by buy-boise real estate group





-It’s challenging to have buyers who are ready to go, but can’t find the quality of the house that they want. Hopefully, summer provides.

- Unknown or obscure lenders – the occasional unknown lender pops up and that always raises red flags. Out-of-state lenders arise the biggest red flags of all.

Let’s not exclude the most fun part. Connecting. I love connecting homeowners with their goals and finding the buyers and sellers they seek. Let me know if you and I need to connect.


Shana Moore, Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional and source of real estate market trends in Boise Idaho



Shana Foster Moore

Your Local Boise Real Estate Connection

Market Update

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Boise Market Trends, Housing Market, Local Boise Market Update, Market Trends, Market Updates, Real Estate, Real Estate & Housing

The numbers are in

Two months in a row we’ve seen double digit increases when compared to the previous year. Inventory also has been a big topic lately.

While inventory doesn’t historically increase until April, we reversed four consecutive months of decreasing inventory when 2,044 homes were on the market in January.

Now here’s something all this data doesn’t quite say. Right now, I have multiple buyers waiting to buy and sellers waiting to sell. My next blog will encourage you not to wait, but rather to beat the rush.

But now, back to your monthly numbers!

While sales historically drop when the calendar rolls over and January hits, this year they went up, however so did the days on market. This is odd, however with only one month of higher-than anticipated days on market, it’s too soon to suggest any sort of a trend. We’ll keep you posted as future data points present themselves.

Up and Down Update


  • Single family home sales increased 10% when compared to January 2013.
  • Days on market! In January, homes were on the market for 70 days, compared to 59 in December and 53 last January.
  • The 99 new home sales created a 27% increase from January 2013.
  • Existing home sales, at 309, were up 6%.
  • Total sales were up 29% over December’s (reversing typical trends).
  • Distressed sales, at 12%, were up 2% from last month, but down 13 % from last year (not to be mistaken for distressed inventory/listings).
  • The median home price, at $208,190, was up 12% from January 2013.
  • Inventory was up slightly, showing 4.2 months and 2,044 homes in January.
  • Down payments were up. More buyers are puttin more than 20% down.


  • Pending short sales, however pending REOs went up.
  • Distressed inventory went down 1% between December and January, 2014.
  • Sales to first time buyers decreased to 31% in 2013.
  • Home building dipped in January according to the Department of Commerce. That makes sense. Brrr!
  • The Fed’s monthly bond purhcases, which push down longer-term interest rates, according to KTVB.

Thank you to the Ada County Association of Realtors for providing these wonderful numbers! Check back next month for more on my interpretation and vantage point.

Providing you real estate market trends
Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional

Interest Rates Chart

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Buying Boise Homes, Financing, Lending, Real Estate, Real Estate & Housing

Interest Rate Update

It’s a great idea to keep your eye on interest rates for so many reasons, but especially if you’re keeping your eye on the housing market.

National rates are still really good – in the 4′s, for a 30-year-fixed loan.

Mortgage rates 30-year fixed 15-year fixed 5/1 ARM 30-year jumbo
2/12/2014 4.48 3.53 3.32 4.50
2/5/2014 4.43 3.50 3.27 4.47
1/30/2014 4.50 3.56 3.37 4.54
1/22/2014 4.56 3.61 3.42 4.63
1/15/2014 4.57 3.62 3.40 4.65
1/8/2014 4.64 3.69 3.46 4.73
12/31/2013 4.69 3.73 3.52 4.72
12/24/2013 4.63 3.70 3.43 4.67
12/18/2013 4.58 3.63 3.33 4.6
12/11/2013 4.55 3.6 3.34 4.55


I recommend that you find local rates, which may run a little lower than the averages above, and get pre-approved, through a local resource. I like Dave Rusk at ICCU for his service, as well as the unbeatable rates he consistently provides. To compare, today’s rates at ICCU are listed at 4.375 for a 30-year fixed loan.

Keep in mind, interest rates affect your monthly payment, as well as the house you can afford. I always suggest checking into a pre-approval even if you’re still waiting for your credit to improve. It’s the first step in the process, and one that good lenders are eager to take with you, even if you’re “not really serious right now.”

Once you are serious, you can compare rates between a mortgage broker (who has access to loans from many different banks) and Idaho Central Credit Union (ICCU) or your bank of choice. Banks underwrite loans in-house and aren’t sourcing them, like mortgage brokers, although it’s common for them sell the loan once it’s in effect.

With a few years between us and the big crash, many people are closer than they may think to being “approvable.” As spring approaches, don’t write-off your ability to buy until you’ve verified your options. My previous, in-depth blog entry reveals some of the waiting periods following issues with distressed properties.


Shana Moore, Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional


Shana Foster Moore

Your local, Boise Real Estate Professional

Renters Vs. Owners – Who’s Really Better Off?

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Boise Market Trends, Market Trends, Real Estate, Real Estate & Housing

Renters Vs. Owners – and other interesting Boise and Ada County Demographics.

When it comes to the percentage of their income that goes toward housing, owners are better off than renters. At least according to Census data, which reports about 50% of renters put less than 30% of their income toward housing costs, compared to 66% of homeowners who have the majority their income leftover after the housing-related bills are paid.

This Census data from American Communities Surveys suggests that about half of local renters would meet a common rental criteria – that monthly income must be three times the rent. Two-thirds of owners would meet the same criteria.

The catch. Home repairs are not included in the lists of costs. The costs included are mortgage, taxes, insurance and utilities. Let’s not forget that renters have the fortune of calling landlords when repairs are needed. This surely would sway those numbers a bit. It also provides renters with the advantage of being less prone to expensive surprises, if they carry renter’s insurance. Without renters insurance, which also isn’t included in the housing costs, a water heater leak could become a big expense for a renter, in terms of damaged material goods. I recommend renters insurance!


Know Your Market

Delving Into the Demographics of Ada County

  • Median rent in Ada County $806 (compared to $790 the two years prior and $860 before that).
  • Rental Vacancy Rate 3.7%
  • Homeowner Vacancy Rate 1.6%
  • 161,876 housing units with a median of 5.8 rooms, with three bedroom units being the most popular (46.9% of houses)
  • Population of people 16 years of age and older – 315,225 in Ada County and 171,487 in Boise
  • 65% of homes are owner-occupied and 35% are renter occupied.
  • 77.5% have a mortgage (of the 100,000 owner-occupied units)
  • The median mortgage is $1,295
  • Average household size is 2.52-2.64, with the higher number representing owner-occupied units
  • It appears that moving has expedited – more people moved within the past several years in 2012 than in the two years preceding
  • Median earnings for full-time workers $36,000- $48,000 (depending on gender)
  • Median household income and benefits $53,909 in Ada County (slightly lower with just Boise)
  • Mean household income and benefits $69,768
  • Median family income 63,736
  • Mean family income 81,963
  • 20 minutes – the mean travel time to work
  • 4.8% are unemployed, 62.3% are employed and 32.7% are not in the work force
  • 12% of people and 8.4% of families are below the poverty line

Data source


If you filled out the ongoing and longer Census survey that supplements the ten-question decennial Census, this was your 2012 data at work. Thank you for populating my latest Foster Boise Blog post with your efforts! PS – way to make it this far, through all that data!

Providing you real estate market trends
Your Local Boise Real Estate Professional

The average rent in Ada County Idaho is $806, however this is not for a specific size or number of bedrooms.