Bozeman Montana Real Estate Information Archive

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Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 531

Bozeman Market Report - Condos and Townhome Sales Through June 2016

by Hart Real Estate Solutions

This month, we will highlight condo and townhome sales through June 1 2016 and compare them to 2015 totals in the greater Bozeman area and Belgrade. Here are a few stats:

  • Condos and Townhomes sales have increased by 7.35% in 2016 (204 sold in 2015, 219 sold in 2016)
  • Dollar volume has increased by 14.73% in 2016 ($44,716,616 in 2015, $51,305,072 in 2016)
  • Condos and Townhomes have spent 26.98% longer on the market than they did in 2015 (46 Days on the Market in 2015, 63 Days on the Market in 2016.

Summary: Condo and Townhome values continue to climb steadily in the greater Bozeman, Belgrade area. As values have risen, these homes have spent more time for sale but as of yet, total sales continue to go up. Having total sales increase suggests that the buyer pool still has an appetite for well-priced multi-family properties. Bozeman and Belgrade’s multi-family market continues to grow and remain healthy.

Bozeman Montana Commissioners Approve City Budget

by Hart Real Estate Solutions


Commissioners have been debating the city’s budget, discussing where spending needs to increase and by how much. Bozeman Montana is one of the fastest growing towns in the nation, so commissioners did not consider lowering the budget, but rather trimming back on possible spending increases.

Commissioners had debated several budgets, with City Manager’s Chris Kukulski’s budget dominating the conversation. Kukulski called for major investments in infrastructure, while also addressing issues created by Bozeman’s population and economic growth. If adopted in total, this budget would have increased a typical Bozeman resident’s city fees by 5.5 percent.

In Kukulski’s budget, the average Bozeman resident would see their taxes increase by $114 per year. Infrastructure spending would take $72 of the yearly tax increase per resident. The fees would fund deferred maintenance as well as street creation and maintenance in new Bozeman neighborhoods.

An alternative budget reduced the increase to $80 per year, representing a 3.9% total increase. However, this plan required cuts in both planning studies and affordable housing efforts, both topics that have been high on the Bozeman’s list of priorities.

The city ultimately decided to approve a budget closer to Kukulski’s budget, but with additional cuts, representing a middle area between the two proposed budgets. They city approved the new budget with a 3-2 vote. Bozeman Commissioners passed on several new hires and a few planning initiatives to cut an additional half million from the budget. They did add some spending in a few places, including the Bozeman Public Library’s new mobile library, the bookmobile.

The approved budget will add $92 a year to a Bozeman resident’s lifestyle. Total yearly costs per resident have increased to $1,148 per year. The 4.5% increase fell between Kukulski’s budget (5.5 percent increase) and the alternative budget (3.9 percent increase). Homeowners can expect to see a $1.32 increase in their property taxes.

Sources: http://www.bozemandailychronicle.com/news/city/bozeman-budget-passes-on-a-split-vote-as-commissioners-spar/article_fe577606-0987-5ec5-9127-3c4303a0dd65.html

http://www.bozemandailychronicle.com/news/city/bozeman-city-commission-debating-budget-tax-increases-monday-night/article_b337d1b8-0451-53ce-b795-c93180feddb5.html

http://www.bozemandailychronicle.com/blogs/city/getting-a-handle-on-bozeman-s-budget/article_8ebe8f60-6dde-56e8-929d-8756366b8241.html

Bozeman High School Students Earn 1.7 Million in College Scholarships

by Hart Real Estate Solutions

 

After tracking scholarship winnings for the first time in Bozeman High School’s history, the College and Career center announced that BHS students received more than 1.7 million dollars in scholarships for college. These scholarships were application based awards, requiring hard work and consistent support from both the students and the center.

Bozeman High School’s education is considered the best in the state. But perhaps its the programs and community that encompass more than just class taking that make the high school unique. The College and Career Center is one of the auxiliary programs that seem to direct BHS students in a positive direction.

The scholarship totals only represented high schoolers who had reported their scholarship to the center, so more money may have been awarded. This year, the College and Career center worked in depth with around 60 of the 415 students (going to the center is voluntary and must be student led). A majority of the 1.7 million in scholarships came from these students. One student went in almost every day and ultimately walked away with $27,000 in scholarships.

The center is open every day at Bozeman High School from 8 am to 4 pm. Having an additional support/educational program like this in the school will get more students into college and at a better rate.

Bozeman High School continues to work hard on surrounding the school with great programs to help students excel and to keep students from falling behind. Last year, Bozeman won an award to improve its mental health programs while also taking part in a competitive study for teaching mathematics in schools.

Bozeman’s enrollment continues to increase because of its consistent excellence. It’s hard for a home buyer to NOT move to Bozeman when they start a family. The City of Bozeman just announced plans to move forward with a second high school to better address growth, allowing for the city to grow while keeping a great education system moving forward.

 

Source: http://www.bozemandailychronicle.com/news/education/bozeman-high-seniors-earn-million-in-college-scholarships/article_a0a3da58-7edd-5dc3-879a-978a2e9fee18.html

Bozeman Approves Cottage Housing to Improve Home Affordability

by Hart Real Estate Solutions

The City of Bozeman has passed a proposal to create smaller, cottage style homes to add lower priced inventory to Bozeman’s real estate market. Bozeman has been addressing home affordability in town for some time, including passing an inclusive zoning ordinance, while continuing to approve additional developments.

The general proposal encourages homes between 1,000 and 1,200 square feet, built surrounding the edges of a property, with an interior, shared common space between them. The design would aim towards using the land more efficiently, fitting many more units per acre with a clustered living style. The design creates a pseudo courtyard feel, with buildings surrounding a natural space.

Growing homes have, at the very least, contributed to growing home prices in Bozeman.  Since 1950, the average square feet for a Bozeman home has doubled, while the average household size has actually shrunk. As buyers have searched for bigger homes year over year, builders have obliged, requiring lower end buyers to buy more home or return to the rental market. Allowing builders more opportunities to create smaller homes will help renters and condo owners get more opportunities to own a detached home. 

The new proposal would also allow for infill development from Bozeman property owners and developers as well. City officials believe cottage housing will improve density, while avoiding large apartments and other urban designs. Previous ordinances had funneled developers into building condos. Condo owners own their own units, but not the exteriors or the land beneath them. The cottage homes would make detached homes more affordable while also giving home buyers the opportunity for land ownership.

Source: http://www.bozemandailychronicle.com/news/city/bozeman-pondering-cottage-housing-ordinance-to-provide-affordable-homes/article_d987b65f-87af-5e23-a661-708e91461a8c.html

http://www.bozemandailychronicle.com/news/city/bozeman-commission-delays-discussion-on-vacation-rentals-food-trucks/article_08f615da-3309-55fb-a406-4579ab709237.html

http://www.bozemandailychronicle.com/news/city/bozeman-city-commission-approves-cottage-housing-ordinance/article_52afe981-a29c-5540-a84c-39d60b57c4cf.html

 

The US Navy has turned to Montana State University and Bozeman’s S2 corporation to help design new technology for diagnosing and detecting potential threats across the world.

The Navy has given MSU’s Spectrum Lab and S2 Corporation a $4.5 million contract to develop new sensors to improve the Navy’s intelligence and awareness. The university and corporation were chosen based on their marked improvement over current technology. According to the CEO of S2 corporation, current sensors see only about 1 percent of a possible spectrum whereas technology they have developed in Bozeman sees more than 100 times that.

The Navy has given S2 and Montana State a 3-year contract, which will provide additional stability for Bozeman’s burgeoning high tech industry. Bozeman, Montana's e-city according to Google, has seen a major expansion by Oracle and NASA funded tech programs in 2016 alone. This news, continues to add to Bozeman's recent stockpile of tech news.

These groups have the opportunity to invent new technology in Bozeman that will be deployed into real world practice. This contract will only improve Bozeman’s reputation as a center for technology in Montana. The contract will also provide additional capital for MSU and S2 to hire additional high income employees.

Bozeman continues to attract more specialized, high salary jobs. Bozeman’s economy continues its forward momentum as more high tech professionals continue to make their home in Bozeman.

 

 

Source: http://www.kbzk.com/story/31588503/msu-bozeman-corporation-land-45m-contract 

Bozeman Montana Will Have Second High School

by Hart Real Estate Solutions

Make some room Bozeman High School—it looks like you will have some company soon in Bozeman, Montana. The phrase now feels much more real, thanks to a 6-1 vote by the Bozeman School Board to build an entirely new, 9 -12 high school in Bozeman Montana. Bozeman has been one of the fastest growing small towns in Western United States.

Bozeman High School currently has 2,000 students but has been expanding year over year. By 2020, the date a new high school should be opened, that enrollment will reach 2,400, hence the split.

The Bozeman School Board, as well as its high school expansion advisory committee, worked hard in the past six months to determine the best method of expanding its educational services to a growing city.

The Bozeman School District had grappled with several ideas, including a Freshman only school, expanding the current high school, or even changing which age children would attend what school. However, after much deliberation, the board went ahead with the most expensive, but also most forward thinking proposal (in terms of potential future costs): an entirely new high school, a distinct entity from Bozeman High School with its own teachers, athletics, mascot etc.

The high school will be built on Bozeman’s west side of town, on Oak and Flander’s Mill Road. It will be just North of Meadowlark Elementary school.

The recommendations for the new Bozeman high school were researched and made by the 31-member advisory committee which consisted of parents, teachers and community members. The committee had to tackle concerns that expansion might bring. The variety and number of classes offered may be thinned due to the costs of new faculty, administration and operating costs.

Bozeman High School’s reputation has been nothing short of stellar of late. Its students always perform extremely high on standardized tests, they take a wide variety of AP classes, the school has received education based grants, and the overall happiness of Bozeman high schoolers is very high in comparison to other places in Montana and in the US. Many are concerned a second school could potentially dilute the excellence and momentum Bozeman High School has built.

Despite concerns of the price and drawbacks of a second high school, the advisory committee reported that letters for and against a new high school were nearly 2-1, giving them the confidence that they have made the best decision for the community. Voters will still need to pass the bond that funds the school. That very important vote will take place in May, 2017.

 

 

Source: http://www.bozemandailychronicle.com/news/education/milestone-vote-supports-bozeman-s-second-high-school/article_a436820e-7804-58d6-bb04-8619b632e863.html

This month, we will compare single family home sales in the Gallatin Valley through April 2016 to last year’s home sales and help reveal trends in the market. Here are a few stats:

  • 2016 sales are currently projected to drop by 21.62% (1,485 in 2015, 388 through April, projected to 1,164 sales in 2016)
  • Dollar volume is projected to drop by 24.05% ($663,572,593 in 2015, $167,993,026 through April, projected to 503,979,078 in 2016)
  • Currently, homes are moving slightly faster than last year, staying on the market 2.06% shorter than 2015 (97 days on the market in 2015, 95 days on the market in 2016)

Summary: The 2016 housing market has moved slower than in 2015, at least through the first 4 months. Home buyers and sellers alike should keep in mind that the most active time periods, those over the summer and fall, tend to see the highest activity. So although simple projections suggest the market might be slowing, a fast summer could easily reverse this trend. The market remains very healthy—growth continues—and small home inventory has kept the market fast paced. 

New Phone Application Will Map Bozeman Montana Trails

by Hart Real Estate Solutions

As the outdoors continue to bring more and more people to Bozeman, Montana, the city has put a bit of organization back into nature. One of Bozeman’s biggest attractions is its 80 mile, in and around town trail system. Bozeman continually updates and improves its trails, knowing they are one of the main attractors to local residents. The trail is used by adults, children, runners, walkers and bikers. Whether for exercise or for travel, the trails have become a part of Bozeman’s outdoor culture.

Starting sometime this year, the Gallatin Valley Land Trust and the City of Bozeman will create a new phone application that maps out every mile of Bozeman’s trails. The application will help residents organize runs or discover new trails. The app will also be constantly updated, so residents will know when a trail is  closed or under maintenance. Amenities like bathrooms will also be marked on the application, helping Bozemanites plan their hikes and breaks accordingly.

The application was approved in January. Once the application is up and running, it will help locals utilize Bozeman trails even more effectively.

 

Source: http://www.kbzk.com/story/30944764/80-miles-and-growing-app-to-feature-bozemans-trail-system

New Pathway Planned For Bridger Canyon Hikers and Bikers

by Hart Real Estate Solutions

The “M” Trail and the Drinking Horse Trail attract a host of daily hikers, trail runners, bikers and other outdoor enthusiasts. Bridger Canyon Road is also one of the more beautiful and fun biking roads in the area. As the area’s popularity has increased, Bridger Canyon road has seen a lot of pedestrian and recreational traffic.

Currently, only a small shoulder exists for people who want to get to the trail heads without having to drive. Using a previously passed bond, the city will construct a new pathway from Bozeman that will go to both the "M" and Drinking Horse Trails. The pathway will be fully separated from Bridger Canyon Road and is expected to cost $4 million.

The path will be asphalt to allow bikers to also use the path with ease. It will connect into city trails at Story Mill Road and then extend out to both the “M” and Drinking Horse. The city will also look into creating an under path  to connect the two trails (on opposite sides of the road) without having to cross Bridger Canyon Road.

The city will need to get 5 homeowners on board to allow room for the pathway.

Bozeman continues to focus on its resident’s safety, while also finding ways to provide access to the outdoors, without the need for a car. Bozeman becomes more convenient to its residents everyday. Its no wonder that more and more people continue to move to the greater Bozeman area.

 

Source: http://www.nbcmontana.com/news/safer-pathway-planned-for-bozeman-hikers-bikers/39578514

Vacation Rental Regulations Coming for Bozeman?

by Hart Real Estate Solutions

The vacation rental market in Bozeman has grown quickly over the past couple of years. The presence of online short term rental sites like AirBnB, have made it easier for any property owner to advertise their home to the world. Vacation home sales increased drastically across the US in 2014, partly due to their wonderful return on investment. But as the market has grown, more and more concerns have been raised about the lack of regulations of vacation rentals in Bozeman.

Bozeman has been honored as a top 16 world wide destination and a top ten ski town in the United States. Coupled with Big Sky's summer growth (and very consistent winters of course!) as well as Yellowstone's increasing popularity, it can be easier to find short term renters than in other Montana markets.

While short term rentals have provided Bozemanites with additional revenue potential in their properties, others have grown concerned about the commercialization of neighborhoods and rising rental rates. As more investors opt into the short term rental market, that leaves less home inventory for the long term rental market. Bozeman has had a vacancy rate at or near zero for several years. It has been an owner’s market, with most owners being able to filter rental candidates based on lease terms and rent rates. In general, having even less inventory on the rental market will lead to higher rent rates.

To have a vacation rental in Bozeman, home owners need to have a permit. However, vacation rentals have not been regulated. According to the Bozeman Daily Chronicle, 280 vacation rentals were listed as active on AirBnB. City planning only has 6 registered vacation rentals in the City of Bozeman.

Although vacation rentals only earn about 10 to 15% of their full potential in Bozeman, having a successful one can lead to a wonderful return on investment. A vacation home priced at $250 a night would net earnings at $40,000 plus if it was filled only half the year.

Bozeman Commissioners will explore the vacation rental market and determine if regulations will be necessary. They will discuss the issue on June 27th. Commissioners have had affordable housing on their list of priorities for a couple of years. The vacation rental battle will probably fall into this discussion as commissioners try to find ways to lower the average price of homes for sale as well as homes for rent.

 

 

Source: http://www.bozemandailychronicle.com/news/city/bozeman-may-tackle-vacation-rental-regulation/article_e3d08226-a643-5b06-89a9-6af769fc64d6.html

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 531

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