Boise Rental Market & Vacancy Rates
The average rent in Boise, ID, is $2,085 per month. Boise rents have increased by 33.14% over the past year and 52.64% over the past three years. The vacancy rate for all rental properties in Boise is 2.20%, up from 0.75% one year ago.
Average Rents in Boise by Property Type
In the Boise rental market, the average monthly rent for all property types in the first quarter of 2022 was $2,085. The jump brings a new area record as rent prices in Boise rose $519, or 33.14%, from the previous year.
The average house rent in Boise is $2,251, a new all-time record. From Q1 of 2021, that’s a 29.15% increase of $508.
Rents for two-bedroom homes topped out at $1,897, a new record and a $334 increase from the previous one recorded in Q4 of 2021. Compared to a year ago, Q1’s new Boise rent price record is a 63.68% increase of $738.
Rental rates for three-bedroom houses saw a 25.60% increase from the previous year, after breaking $2,000 for the first time in 2021 and reaching a new record of $2,242. That’s a yearly growth of $457.
Four-bedroom home rates dropped from 2021 Q3’s record of $2,734, finishing the quarter at $2,613. That’s still a $328 (14.35%) bump from the Boise rental market’s previous year. While Q3’s incredible rate can be attributed to the volatility of the four-bedroom rental market, Q1’s growth closely matches the trend over the last two years of rent climbing around $100 per quarter.
Five-bedroom house monthly rental rates increased by 14.50% ($386) from Q4, reaching a new all-time high of $2,662. It’s also a 28.39% ($674) increase from the previous year. Also, keep in mind that the relatively small five-bedroom property sample size leads to this market variation and unpredictability.
The average apartment rent in Boise is $1,598, a new record and a $124 (8.4%) gain from the previous record set in Q4, 2021. It’s also a yearly increase of $479 (42.81%).
For the fourth quarter in a row, rents for Boise’s one, two, and three-bedroom multifamily units marked record, or near record, highs.
Boise rent prices for a one-bedroom apartments climbed to $1,356, a $368 (37.25%) jump from 2021’s first quarter. Two-bedroom units topped out at $1,479, equating to a $292 (24.60%) yearly rise. Three-bedroom multifamily apartments hit $1,959, a yearly surge of $776 (65.60%).
Boise Rental Vacancy Rates
Boise’s average rental market vacancy rate for all property types increased to 2.20% in Q1, up from 0.75% last year. In contrast, 2021’s fourth quarter saw vacancy rates at 1.64%. Historically, renter demand declines in the winter months, corresponding to higher vacancy rates. That’s changed in recent years as the pandemic and an off-again-on-again employment market brings in new variability.
Thanks to Covid-19, renter demand is no longer seasonally consistent.
Single-family investment property vacancies rose from 1.20% the previous year, beginning the first quarter of 2022 at 3.46%. Apartment vacancy rates rose from 0.53% over the last twelve months, ending at 1.52%.
To understand those numbers a little better, it’s important to note that a healthy rental market typically sees vacancy numbers around 5-6%. At the current average of 2.20%, renters are feeling the same supply shortage as homebuyers. The short supply and high demand—fueled by a fast-growing population—are sending rental rates higher.
Residential Investment Property Summary and Outlook
The 2021 rental market ended much in the same way it began, with pandemic-driven demand, high population growth, and record-breaking real estate prices driving rental rates to the highest level the Boise metro area has ever experienced.
As one of the main contributing factors, Boise’s growing population is stretching a severe lack of available housing. The population has outgrown the number of residential properties built every year since the end of the recession in 2009, which means demand has surpassed supply for more than 12 years. At the beginning of 2020, that discrepancy expanded dramatically as Covid-19 brought even more people to Idaho, pushing Boise further into an extreme seller’s market.
Boise’s dwindling supply has kept buyer competition fierce over the last three years—most sales receive multiple offers—and record-high demand has sent prices soaring. Between April 2019 and April 2022, the median sale price of a single-family house jumped $265,000.
Currently, the Treasure Valley is in a critical housing supply shortage.
The significant price bumps and severely limited supply have driven many potential buyers to the comparatively more affordable rental market. As the real estate market prices out more and more buyers, the demand for rental properties continues to swell.
Compounding that additional rental demand, the formation of new households has risen as friends and family members strike out and look for their own spaces. While there was an initial decline as the pandemic began, new household formations exploded after the initial lockdowns as renters sought out personal space.
Real estate price jumps, critically-low supply, rising household formations, and the flood of pandemic-related population growth have created a perfect storm. There just is not enough housing to meet Boise’s demand, and as a result, rental rates are breaking records every quarter, and vacancies remain near recorded lows.
This was vividly clear at the start of 2021—the first quarter saw Boise rental market vacancies reach an all-time record of 0.75%. As Q4 came to a close, its 1.64% vacancy rate indicated much of the same experience for renters going into the new year. Demand continues to dwarf available supply.
Note: Historically, the rental market vacancy rates average between 5-6% for both single and multifamily rentals.
With the rental property supply well below the historical market average, rates climbed, and Q1 of 2022 brought new records across the board.
2021 was different from the start of the pandemic when vacancies were spiking, and many landlords were reluctant to increase rent as Covid-19 took hold.
2020’s combined average rent stayed reasonably consistent throughout the year, and Q4 of 2020 ended at $1,480, only a $70 jump from the previous year, an increase consistent with historical data.
That was not the case for 2021.
Last year’s Q4 brought record-breaking rates in 8 out of the 10 metrics we monitor. Only four and five-bedroom single-family rentals stayed below their previous records, but that’s more due to statistically fewer properties and available leases. Both rates are still much higher than historical rent increases, with both rents jumping 23.34% and 19.43%, respectively, from the previous year.
Notably, landlords have been bumping rates in an effort to keep up with the steeply climbing market, and average rents have shot up 33% over the past year.
Q1’s combined average monthly rent across all property types hit a record of $2,085. That’s a $529 twelve-month increase.
Moving into 2022, demand has maintained near-record highs. This is driving prices higher across both the rental and housing market. As Boise’s population continues to grow by nearly 2,000 people a month, demand is not dwindling—but it is continuing to exacerbate the supply shortage.
As a result, expect the Boise rental market to continue to follow last year’s trend. Demand will stay high, vacancy rates will remain exceptionally low, and rental prices will likely keep climbing.
The median home price in Boise, ID (metro) is $552,504. In the first quarter of 2022, the median sales price for duplexes was $602,500, $955,000 for fourplexes, and $1,380,000 for apartment buildings (defined as five or more units).
Rents at 30% or below household income are typically considered affordable. In fact, many property management companies require a minimum income of at least two and a half to three times the asking rent. Based on U.S. Census data, the median household income in Ada County is $69,952, equating to rents of $1,749 per month (at the 30% threshold).
Multifamily Market Report - Supply
While there are no signs of a drop in demand for multifamily units from potential renters, we continue to see a steady stream of new supply, albeit at higher monthly rents.
Estimated Apartment Projects Under Construction in 2022
- Boise = 1,436 units
- Meridian = 1,004 units
- Eagle = 47 units
- Garden City = 583 units
- Nampa = 159 units
- Kuna = 64 units
- Star = 148 units
- Caldwell = 123 units
- Middleton = 0 units
Building Permits Issued for Multifamily Units by County
Boise Rental Units by Structure Type
Keep in mind that the Boise area still has fewer apartment buildings than a typical metro area this size. Single unit properties, primarily houses, make up more than half of the Boise rental market.
Boise Residential Income Property Capitalization Rates
Capitalization Rate, also known as "Cap Rate," is a good starting point to compare Boise investment opportunities quickly. Many more factors need to be considered, such as the growth or decline of the potential income and the increase (appreciation) in the value of the property.
Capitalization Rate = Yearly Net Income/Total Value
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*This We Know Boise Rental Market Report is based on a survey of 10,352 rental units. It refers to the city of Boise and the surrounding areas of Meridian, Eagle, Kuna, Star, and Garden City. Select data obtained from the Intermountain MLS, Community Planning Association of Southwest Idaho, and the 2022 SW Idaho Vacancy Report Q1 from the Southwest Idaho Chapter of the National Association of Residential Property Managers.