Demand drives up Jackson Hole housing market; supply becomes scarce

Apr 24, 2013

The housing market in Jackson Hole is booming, and it’s getting even more expensive to live there.

Last week, the Jackson Town Council decided to buy an apartment building to house town employees, so they could afford to live in the area. That makes it 15 housing properties the town will own.

When home values dropped during the recession, many investors and first-time homeowners bought up available inventory in the area. And now the shortage of available properties now is driving real estate costs back up. The overall number of properties under contract in the area was up 96-percent in the first quarter of this year, compared with the same time last year. That’s according to the most recent numbers from the Jackson Hole Report on real estate.

Co-author David Viehman says many people would rather pay high rental costs instead of commuting from Star Valley or Victor, Idaho. And that’s why, Viehman says, it’s almost impossible to find places to rent.

“In the last year, year and a half, prices have gone up 10-15 percent. All the management companies have waiting lists for single family homes that have a back yard or condos that have a garage.”

Viehman says Jackson Hole is running out of space that’s eligible for development, which could make it impossible to accommodate population growth in the future.