Is it a good time to buy rental property in Sun Valley?
Just take one look at the Wednesday classifieds in the Idaho Mountain Express and you will quickly understand why we have a big shortage of rental housing. Last week's paper revealed seven columns of "Help Wanted" ads and only two columns of "Rentals Available." In other words, a much improved job market has created a great demand for rentals.
There are many reasons for the rental housing shortage. Here are a few from my perspective:
During the housing meltdown many people lost their homes to foreclosure and short sales. While some people left the area, many stayed and become renters.
We haven't had a lot of multi-family construction since the housing meltdown. If you drive around, you quickly realize that most of the homes being built right now are swanky high-end homes in the north valley or starter spec homes in the south valley. Multi-family construction is next to nonexistent.
We are witnessing a big change to Ketchum's skyline with the construction of the Limelight Hotel and the Auberge Resort Sun Valley. While 200-plus construction workers will soon be out of jobs as the Limelight construction winds down, I suspect many of those workers will pivot to the Auberge Resort. And when the Limelight opens their doors they will be hiring 55 employees, 12 of those being salaried managers. 50% of the salaried managers are from Blaine County and 50% are coming from the Limelight Hotel Aspen.
I keep hearing anecdotally that some people who previously were renting their properties on a long-term basis have switched gears and are now renting night-to-night or on a short-term basis. It's easy to attract short-term renters with websites such as Vacation Rental by Owner and AirBnB.
Finally, many of our single-family homes have moved from full-time occupancy or rental occupancy to seasonal occupancy. According to Blaine County Economic Development, in 1990, 11% of our housing was seasonally occupied. That trend has grown year-by-year. In 2010, the number of seasonally occupied homes outnumbered the total owner-occupied properties.
For more in-depth analysis of Blaine County's current economic vitality and housing shortage, see the 2016 Economic Almanac (Blaine County by the Numbers) in the Idaho Mountain Express
This is a simple supply and demand scenario. When there is great demand, prices increase. And vice-versa. If that isn't enough to convince you that now is the time to buy rental property in the Wood River Valley, I don't know what is.
Want to know more about rental property in Sun Valley? Just call me. 208.481.0450