Housing Market Data Dashboard
Below are visualizations representing data that reflect social and demographic trends in Missoula County (for the Sales, Supply, and Rental sections click the boxes above).
These visualizations are updated regularly with the most recent data available. Depending on the sources, some data may be refreshed monthly or quarterly. Some may update annually, with a year or more of lag.
Under the visualizations, you can find explanatory text that adds context to the data presented here.
Click the double-arrow icon in the lower-right corner of the visualizations for a full-sized view.
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Please note that the color palette for these visualizations has been chosen for maximum accessibility for those with visual impairments. If you have trouble viewing the visualizations, please contact us for assistance.
Social Data Context
Population Change in Missoula County
The total population of Missoula County increased by 0.68 percent from 2018 to 2019, reaching a total population of 119,600. This is the second year in a row where the population growth rate in the county has fallen and is the second-lowest county growth rate since 2011.
From 2018 to 2019 the population of unincorporated Missoula County fell by almost 300 people, which indicates migration from rural areas into the City of Missoula or other destinations.
Looking back, from 2010 to 2019, the total population of Missoula County increased by 9 percent, adding 10,106 residents. Much of this growth occurred within the City of Missoula, which added 8,622 residents, an increase of 12.9 percent. The population of unincorporated Missoula County increased by 1,484 residents (an increase of 3.5 percent) from 2010 to 2019.
The Impact of Net Migration on Missoula County Population Change
Three factors influence population change: births, deaths, and net migration. Net migration factors in both the number of individuals moving to the area and the number of individuals leaving the area. Typically, more people move to Missoula than move away, giving it a positive net migration.
For the third year in a row, net migration declined in Missoula County. In 2019, the net migration was 649 people, compared to 1,150 in 2018. The natural increase in population (births versus deaths) in 2019 was 160, the lowest the county has experienced in over 30 years.
Changes in Median Income
The estimated median income for all households in Missoula County increased 1.3 percent in 2019 to $57,347, slightly ahead of Montana’s median income of $57,153, but below the U.S. median income of $65,712.
Reported by household type:
- Renter median income increased 1.7 percent to $38,186.
- Homeowner median income declined 4.3 percent to $72,121
Over the past five years, all household median income increased 33.9 percent; renter median income increased 32.8 percent, and homeowner median income increased 14.3 percent.
The Impact of COVID-19 on Unemployment
The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on unemployment in 2020 is not fully visualized on the graphs above. The unemployment rate peaked in April at 13.8 percent during Governor Bullock’s stay-at-home order. By the end of 2020, the unemployment rate improved to 5.85 percent, which is well below the peak, but roughly 2.75 percentage points higher than year-end 2019. It is also notable that the recovery has not been equal across all industries.
Poverty and Homelessness Rates
Missoula County’s poverty level has shown a steady decline since 2016 and is currently estimated at 11.5 percent for 2020.
The January single point-in-time survey of individuals experiencing homelessness counted 468, up 27.5 percent from 2019. It’s important to note that this survey is from before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Missoula County Public Schools identified 318 children who had unstable housing (either experiencing homelessness or at risk of being homeless) during the 2019-2020 school year.
Even with increasing median income and declining poverty rates, 49.2 percent of Missoula County renters and 24 percent of Missoula County homeowners are “cost-burdened,” meaning they pay more than 30 percent of their income for housing. These figures are similar to those of the U.S. at large, where 49.6 percent of renters and 22.5 percent of homeowners are cost burdened.
2020 Housing Attainability/Affordability
Housing attainability continues to be a challenge across most price ranges. Low mortgage rates and higher median family income have helped, however increasing home prices offset those gains.
When buying a median-priced home for $350,000, at an interest rate of 2.50 percent on a 30-year conventional mortgage and a down payment of 5 percent, the required income to qualify is about $93,616. If you overlay this data point with the Census Median Family income projection of $84,279 for 2020. The buyer of this scenario would be short approximately $9,300 in annual gross income. This roughly translates into a Housing Affordability Index (HAI, referenced in slide 6 of this section) of 90.
In the scenario where the borrower has a 20% down payment, the income needed for the same purchase was $75,014, considered affordable at an HAI of 112.