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The income of Boise area homebuyers increased fastest in the US, fueled by remote workers

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The median income of a buyer of a home in the Boise metro area increased sharply during the COVID-19 pandemic era. More sharply than anywhere else in the country.

Real estate firm Redfin said the median income of a homebuyer in the area stood at $98,000 as of 2021. That’s a 24.1% increase from 2019 — a higher rate than any other metro in the US.

Austin, Texas is next on the list, followed by four cities in Florida.

While the median income of buyers went up 24%, the prices went up even more – an increase of 53% from December 2019 to December 2021. The price increase is the most for any of the top ten markets Redfin provided data on.

Metro areaMedian homebuyer income growth – 2019-2021Median homebuyer income – 2021Median home price growth – Dec. 2019-Dec. 2021
Boise, ID24.1%$98,00053%
Austin, TX19.1%$137,00048%
Cape Coral, FL18.5%$96,00048%
North Port, FL18.5%$109,00047%
West Palm Beach, FL17%$110,00033%
Phoenix, AZ15.9%$95,00048%
Stockton, CA15.3%$113,00034%
Tacoma, WA15.1%$107,00039%
Salt Lake City, UT6.8%$94,00041%
National 6.8%$94,00024%
Source: Redfin data

Remote work a factor

A big factor in the increase in income? More folks moving to the Boise area for remote work, Redfin said.

“For white-collar workers earning high salaries, remote work is a huge financial boon,” Redfin Senior Economist Sheharyar Bokhari said. “It enables them to move from a tech center like San Francisco to a more affordable part of the country like Boise or Salt Lake City, get more home for their money and save some for a rainy day.”

As BoiseDev reported earlier this year, Idaho saw the second highest percentage increase in tech workers in the country during the pandemic area.

But while it’s good for folks moving and keeping higher coastal salaries, there are downsides for people who lived in the area already.

“It can have the opposite effect on locals in those destinations–especially renters–who are watching from the sidelines as home prices skyrocket while their income stays mostly the same,” Bokhari said.

Nationally, median income rose 6.8% during the two-year time frame. Boise’s homebuyer median income of $98,000 is just above the national average of $94,000 – and still far below other fast-growing cities like Austin ($137,000), but above neighboring city Salt Lake City, UT ($91,000).

Don Day - BoiseDev Editor & Founder
Don Day - BoiseDev Editor & Founder
Don is the founder and publisher of BoiseDev. He is a National Edward R. Murrow Award winner and a Stanford University John S. Knight Fellow. Contact him at [email protected].

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