A Frenzy In The Market…

by William Skink

A friend of mine took a day trip this week to Granite ghost town and he said the interstate was literally choked with out-of-state traffic.

Whether they are coming temporarily, as tourists, or looking to relocate permanently, Montana is quickly becoming a very desirable location to shelter in place from a global pandemic.

It was just a matter of time before someone wrote an article with the title Realtors report out-of-state rush on Montana real estate. From the link:

“There is a flood of people coming into the market,” said Crystal Ault, a Missoula-area real estate broker. “There is a frenzy in the market.”

Like Friedner, Ault said she has had a number of clients from other states looking to relocate to Montana. In one instance, she described a family from Oregon that is looking for property to relocate their entire family, including both sets of parents. Ault said she has seen people make offers anywhere from $10,000 to $15,000 above the asking price. Last week, one of her clients made a cash offer $5,000 above the asking price and still lost out on the property because there were seven different buyers bidding on it.

Some would-be buyers are even resorting to apps like FaceTime to virtually tour as many homes as possible from afar. Both Friedner and Ault have had clients in recent weeks make offers on homes they’ve never stepped foot in. (Both note that the clients usually see the home during the inspection period and before the final paperwork is signed).

Isn’t this wonderful? The cost of housing will CONTINUE to skyrocket in places like Missoula because a global pandemic has motivated wealthy people to flee their elitist urban enclaves. Fantastic.

A few weeks ago I ran across a second-homer at one of my favorite outdoor spots. I was surprised she openly disclosed that she had a second home and it was in Alberton. Maybe she expected a quaint local like myself to excitedly welcome her to the beautiful, non-crowded state she had the financial means to flee to.

I wasn’t rude to this person, but I also didn’t roll out the rhetorical red carpet for her either. I simply made a mental note to prepare myself for more of these encounters.

Like rats jumping from a sinking ship, those with the means to do so are coming to Montana.

Maybe instead of looking like a quaint local I should add some hardware to my hip.

What caliber says WELCOME TO MONTANA most effectively?

About Travis Mateer

I'm an artist and citizen journalist living and writing in Montana. You can contact me here: willskink at yahoo dot com
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2 Responses to A Frenzy In The Market…

  1. john mcnaught says:

    kinda like financial osmosis. movement of greater financial concentration to an area of lesser confrontation concentration. It may be accurately concluded that they are bringing the Covid with them. All the more reason for testing and contact tracing.

  2. Djinn&Tonic says:


    Over weekend 75 new Covid cases. Previous single day high was 32 on June 20th.
    We had such a good thing going. Yes, there are many issues with keeping Montana closed. But what are the ramifications?

    We do have a healthier population, but an older one too. Especially with reopened tourism, it is only a matter of time before we see smaller, older, tight knit communities decimated.

    That is ignoring the cities, ignoring farmers who massively boost our economy. Among thousand other issues that arrive.

    There is no good solution, but reopening like that? We should have gone for 2 weeks of zero cases and kept the state closed. Exactly like the countries who are now flourishing. The second wave isn’t even here yet, we just boosted the first.

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