The 10 Best Places To Buy A House In Montana For 2021


Using science and data, we can tell you which places in Montana have seen home prices rising and people flocking over the past year.

Editor’s note: This is not investment advice and we are not financial advisers. Article updated for 2021.

There's a the age old question everyone thinks about when they decide to move to a city in Montana:

Should I buy a place or rent? Well, we aren't here today to solve that problem for you exactly. We are just assuming you'll do the right thing and a buy a place. And while we are happy to tell you the best place to live in Montana, this analysis is going to tackle the question of the best place to buy a house as an investor. That is we are going to try and determine the up and coming cities in the Treasure State.

To do that we are going to look at places in Montana that are growing faster than average, but where home prices are below average. In every day terms, the "deals". The best deal in Montana at the moment? That would be Glendive according to our analysis.

Here's a look at the top ten places to buy a home in Montana for 2021.

What's the best place to buy a home in Montana for 2021? According to our analysis, would the the ideal place to buy a home looking into the future.

The methodology that wen't into this can be a bit complicated, so we'll break it down for you in as much detail as we can below. If you're not worried about finding a deal on good places to live, check out the most expensive places to live in Montana and, for those of you on a budget, the cheapest places to live in Montana.

For more Montana reading, check out:

The 10 Best Cities To Buy A House In Montana For 2021

Glendive, MT

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 5,126
Median Home Price: $161,500
Population Change: -2.0%
Home Price Change: -0.2%
More on Glendive: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Columbia Falls, MT

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 5,429
Median Home Price: $195,700
Population Change: 3.9%
Home Price Change: 1.5%
More on Columbia Falls: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Lewistown, MT

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 5,885
Median Home Price: $107,100
Population Change: -0.2%
Home Price Change: -4.1%
More on Lewistown: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Sidney, MT

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 6,416
Median Home Price: $233,800
Population Change: -0.9%
Home Price Change: 9.8%
More on Sidney: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Laurel, MT

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 6,834
Median Home Price: $174,000
Population Change: -0.2%
Home Price Change: 3.3%
More on Laurel: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Livingston, MT

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 7,575
Median Home Price: $224,200
Population Change: 1.3%
Home Price Change: 4.1%
More on Livingston: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Whitefish, MT

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 7,714
Median Home Price: $364,500
Population Change: 5.5%
Home Price Change: 4.6%
More on Whitefish: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Miles City, MT

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 8,487
Median Home Price: $160,000
Population Change: -1.0%
Home Price Change: 6.3%
More on Miles City: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Belgrade, MT

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 8,685
Median Home Price: $243,200
Population Change: 4.1%
Home Price Change: 9.5%
More on Belgrade: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Anaconda-Deer Lodge County, MT

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 9,106
Median Home Price: $131,300
Population Change: 0.1%
Home Price Change: 9.1%
More on Anaconda-Deer Lodge County: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

How do you determine the best places to buy a home in Montana for 2021?

We were in real estate for almost five years and have been working on this site for another three. Suffice is to say, we've put a lot of thought into what goes into finding a good place to buy a home.

So all that thinking has come to this moment where we get to spell out how we'd approach finding an up-and-coming place to live in Montana. Put differently, the analysis will try to find places in Montana with undervalued homes relative to pent up demand.

To do that we looked at the most recent American Community Survey Census data for 2015-2019 and compared it to the previous vintage (2012-2016). Specifically, we used the following criteria:

  • Y-o-Y Change In Population (People want to live here)
  • Y-o-Y Change In Median Home Prices (People are willing to pay for it)
  • Home Prices Relative To The State Average (It's still kinda cheap)

We want places that are growing, have seen home prices increase in recent years, and are still "cheap" for Montana with the following caveats:

So of the 0 cities and towns in Montana, only 17 places made it through our initial filters to even be considered.

We then ranked each place from 1 to 17 for the criteria mentioned above with 1 being the best for that criteria. We averaged the rankings to create a "best place to buy" index with the place having the lowest index being the best. You can download the data here.

Turns out that Glendive is the best potential gem in the not-so-rough in the Treasure State.

Read on for more on these places.

There You Have It - The Best Places To Purchase A House In Montana for 2021

There's our analysis of the best places to buy a house in Montana. And, to be clear, we aren't necessarily saying these places are the best places to live, just that it looks like they might be in a couple of years based on the data.

In fact, every place in the following table meets our criteria, so even though it may not look super long, remember we started off with all 0 places in the state.

So if we'd could rent or buy in these cities, we'd definitely buy.

For more Montana reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Places To Buy A Home In Montana

City Rank Median Home Price Population Change Home Price Increase
Glendive 1 $161,500 -2.0% -0.2%
Columbia Falls 2 $195,700 3.9% 1.5%
Lewistown 3 $107,100 -0.2% -4.1%
Sidney 4 $233,800 -0.9% 9.8%
Laurel 5 $174,000 -0.2% 3.3%
Livingston 6 $224,200 1.3% 4.1%
Whitefish 7 $364,500 5.5% 4.6%
Miles City 8 $160,000 -1.0% 6.3%
Belgrade 9 $243,200 4.1% 9.5%
Anaconda-Deer Lodge County 10 $131,300 0.1% 9.1%
Havre 11 $149,300 0.2% 3.8%
Kalispell 12 $233,500 2.7% 9.1%
Helena 13 $244,300 2.6% 5.3%
Bozeman 14 $365,600 3.6% 6.6%
Great Falls 15 $176,500 -0.3% 4.5%
Missoula 16 $279,700 2.2% 6.6%
Billings 17 $221,100 0.1% 3.9%

How Is The Area In ?

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About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.

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