Posts Tagged ‘ ADA County ’

Boise area Home Owner Exemption Status

Did you buy a home since last May? Did you apply for your home owners exemption? If you do not apply by April 15th your property taxes will be higher until next year and you will pay the same rate as if you were a non-owner occupied. This is an item that can sometimes get overlooked when purchasing a home.

The process is very simple here in Boise. You have several options: fax it, mail it, apply on-line, or walk into the Ada County Assessor’s office. If you fax it or mail it, make sure to get a receipt to prove that you did apply on time. If you apply on-line you will get an electronic receipt. If you walk it in, they will give you a copy of the paperwork with a “received” stamp on it.

You have to do this even if you are just refinancing a mortgage. I recently refinanced and I then walked my home owners exemption paper in to the Assessor’s office and as helped right away (by a very helpful clerk named Vicki). She plugged in the information, handed me the receipt and I was on my way.

To get a copy of the exemption form go online to:  To fill out the form you will need the parcel number, the date the property was purchased, the date that the property was moved into, and the purchase price. The Ada County Assessor’s office is located at 190 E. Front St (right next to the court building) in Boise. Parking is free if you are there less than one hour (there is usually no waiting). 

To fax it: 208-287-7209

To mail it: Ada County Assessor’s Office, 190 e. Front St., Ste 107, Boise 83702

Online: see web address listed above

If you would like additional information regarding home owner’s exemptions or if you would like other Boise Real Estate information please feel free to contact me through my website (no sign up required):

Real Estate Statistics for ADA County-February 2011

Today we will look at the Real Estate Statistics in ADA County for February 2011. ADA county covers all of Boise, Meridian, Kuna, Star and Eagle areas. These numbers will represent single family and single family w/ acreage.

Available Homes

# Available: 2661

# Vacant: 1451

# Short Sale: 837

# Bank Owned: 260

Median Asking Price: $165K

Number of distressed properties still dominates the market  with 41% of homes either a short sale or bank owned. The median asking price did rise by $10K over January. Inventory levels rose by almost 400 properties but is at the same level it was at in December of 2010 which was still lower year over year.

Pending Sales:

# Pending: 692

Median Asking Price: $150K

Pending sales are way up from January’s 584 and that is several months straight of increasing pending sales. The median price has remained the same from January. 

Closed Sales:

#Closed: 393

# Short Sale: 89

# Bank Owned: 145

Median Sales Price: $145,700

Median Days on Market: 70

ADA County’s sold prices increased by over $5K and should remain pretty stable since the pending prices are pretty flat.  Almost 60 % of homes sold were distressed which is a good thing/bad thing. Good being that distressed properties are moving through the system but the bad news is that they are taking the prices down with them.

Overall, ADA County showed some hopeful signs in February and this is considering that it was a shorter month. I think that spring is going to prove very interesting for real estate! If you would like additional statistics for the Boise Real Estate Market please go to the “Boise Real Estate Statistics” category menu or go to my website (no sign up required):

Could 2011 End the Down Housing Market?

According to a Wall Street Journal article today, 2011 could well be the end of the housing crash. They cite several reasons but one in particular that is in contrast to the housing bubble is that there is an increase in cash buyers and deals. During the height of the housing bubble most deals were done through loans.  

That is good news for the future because if the prices go back up a bit and then dip back down, many of the homeowners have full equity in their property. This could help avoid another disastrous housing crisis.

Another important issue discussed was that on the national level the cost of a home is estimated to be around 19 months of pay. This is the lowest it has been in 35 years! Prices normally cost about 2 years in pay. Couple that with the relatively low-interest rates and you have a great buying opportunity.

The article does go on to caution that buyers that are in the market right now should plan on buying and holding onto the property for 10 years. They use this caution because there is still the potential for housing prices to dip another 5 to 10%. But since there is not guarantee how prices will go in the next few months, waiting to find out could cost the buyer a great deal.

I will be posting the local numbers for February for Boise, Meridian, and Eagle, Idaho by weeks end. It should be interesting to say the least, with good and bad news mixing it up as usual!

If you would like to see information regarding the current real estate market in the Boise area please go to my website (no sign up required):

Foreclosures Tripled in Idaho since 2008-Really?!

I love when my local newspaper gives me something to write about! The Idaho Statesman so consistently gives half a story I wonder how they get away printing them as news.

If you happened to catch the article about Foreclosure sales having tripled in Idaho, let me give you the “rest of the story” as Paul Harvey used to say.

This article compares foreclosed property sales (bank owned)  in 2008 with 2010 in Idaho. Well, duh, there was an increase in foreclosed properties!  Let me show you the numbers to better illustrate the “duh” moment:

2008 ADA County

Total Sold: 5359

Short Sale: 253

Foreclosed/Bank Owned: 0


2009 ADA County

Total Sold: 5752

Short Sale: 852

Foreclosed/Bank Owned: 1205


2010 ADA County

Total Sold: 6254

Short Sale: 1066

Foreclosed/Bank Owned: 1866

Observe the Foreclosed number in 2008(and no, I was not making an emoticon face there!).  That’s right! It was zero! This is not a shocker because short sales were just getting started with the housing market decline that did not officially start until late 2007. Therefore foreclosed properties would not start for another 6 months at least. So to compare 2008 to 2010, the article might as well have compared 2003 with 2010 and they would have had the same outcome.

But look carefully at all the sold numbers, because this is the good news. In 2008, 5359 homes sold and in 2010, 6254 homes sold. That is a pretty significant increase. So how come the article did not highlight this aspect? 

But here are some even more interesting numbers to me that give me hope that the market truly is turning around:

January 2008- ADA County

Total Sold: 324

Short Sale: 44

Foreclosed/Bank Owned: 0


January 2009 – ADA County

Total Sold: 245

Short Sale : 30

Foreclosed/Bank Owned: 14


January 2010 – ADA County

Total Sold: 305

Short Sale: 60

Foreclosed/Bank Owned: 101


January 2011 – ADA County

Total Sold: 381

Short Sale: 69

Foreclosed/Bank Owned: 150

Look carefully at the Sold numbers.  January 2011 had 381 solds while January 2008 had 324.  Yes, more than half of the homes sold in January 2010 and 2011 are distressed properties but these two years reflect the mortgage and housing collapse of 2008.

Two sold numbers that I find promising are the total in 2010 and the January 2011.  We have increased sales and a shrinking inventory which will help lead us back to a healthy balance in the real estate market.

One more item in the article that always makes me crazy is the talk of “shadow inventory” that has not been put on the market yet. This is fear mongering plain and simple. This “shadow inventory being dumped on the market” theory has been around for a few years now.

 Two things about this theory: One, the banks are not going to dump all their inventory at one time. They are already discounting their properties well below market value so to dump them all at once would further devalue their properties. Two, you can consider all homes that are not on the market as shadow inventory. My house, your house and anyone else who has not put their house up for sale are technically “shadow inventory”!

Please note that these statistics are based on Single family and Single family with acreage in ADA County from the Intermountain Multiple Listing Service.

If you would like additional statistics for the Boise Real Estate market area please go to my website:

Article referenced: Foreclosure sales in Idaho have tripled since 2008; Joe Estrella; Idaho 2/24/2011

Home Prices- Pre-Bubble?

In a recent Wall Street Journal article it was discussed that we are now at pre-bubble prices for housing. (Pre-bubble is considered to be pre 2003.) Nationally there are still pockets that are over valued (Seattle, New York, Portland , Oregon and Charlotte).  Place like Cleveland are so undervalued that their prices are considered to be at the 1991 level! Economists are expecting another 5-10% drop. But that is nationally, and as I have said in a prior post, real estate is local!

So I checked the Intermountain MLS to see if the data agrees with that and here is what I found for the ADA County (Boise, Idaho area):

In 2002 the Median price (sold) was : $140K

In 2003 the Median price (sold) was : $146.9K

In 2004 the Median price (sold) was:  $162,990

In 2010 the Median price (sold) was : $155K

It is possible that if the 2010 price goes down 5% it will be $147,250 which is near the 2003 price. If it goes down 10% it will be $139.5K which is almost the 2002 prices. So far the data I have seen doesn’t suggest a 10% decrease but a 5% decrease is plausible.

Would that be bad news? No! I do not remember anyone complaining in 2003 that homes were too expensive (okay, maybe there were a few). I have stated before that getting back to normal prices for real estate in the Boise, Idaho area will be closer to 2002-early 2003 pricing.  And affordability is always a good thing! 

If you would like to see what current home prices are in the Boise, ID area please go to my website:

To see more of the Wall Street Journal article go to:

More Media Bad News

Today was the Idaho Statesman’s turn to let you know that homes prices are plummeting. They even called the four paragraph article, “A Sinking Feeling”.

Once again they compared home sales of January 2010 to January 2011. They ask “How can prices be down if sales are up?” As I pointed out in yesterday’s post, with the large number of bank owned properties being sold in January 2011 it is only natural that the median price would be lower.

No where in the article do they mention that the inventory is also at a four-year low. Once again the media only tells part of the story. For the full story please refer to my post dated February 11, 2011 – “January Statistics Boise-2010 vs 2011”.

If you have any questions or comments please feel free to contact me: or

Are We There Yet?

Many are wondering if the real estate market has hit bottom (here in Boise anyway…). It seems every time we think that the market was there, it then edged a little lower the next month. But if we look at the statistics from the past few months, the story seems to be changing. So, are we there yet?

The problem with knowing when the market has hit bottom, is when the data shows you that your are already out. And the numbers are indicating that we are not in bottom anymore. Now there will be those that argue that “shadow” inventory has not hit yet so we can expect further decreases in prices and increased inventory. The problem with this theory is that shadow inventory could be considered every house that is not for sale yet! Well if that is the case, then the market is doomed! Kind of silly thinking, so here are some real numbers to consider:

In the ADA County (Boise, ID)  market units sold:

December: 2010- 518  homes sold

                       2009 – 374 homes sold

                       2006 – 614 homes sold

Keep in mind that in 2009 the buyers credit was in place and yet we still sold more in 2010. This means a few things to me: 1. that lenders are doing a better job of closing short sales and bank owned, and 2. that smart buyers are realizing that the prices are definitely in bottom.

Inventory has also had quite a change:

December: 2010 – 2641  active

                       2009 – 3428 active

                       2006 – 3919 active

The difference between Decembers 2010 and 2009 for active listings really highlights how inventory has decreased. With prices staying relatively flat for the past few months and inventory on the decrease, I sense a subtle shift in the market. Now does this mean that we are going back into a seller’s market? Not immediately, because we do have to see how it goes come spring, but it is pretty safe to say that the pendulum is starting to shift out of the buyers side and back in the sellers direction.

One more thing to keep in mind! When we think of getting back to normal, do not think of the market as it was in 2006, when the median sales price was $ 232.9K but closer to the 2004 median sales price of $167K.  2004 was a much “saner” normal!

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