The 2014 Kansas report indicated that the Kansas real estate field was on an upwards trend of continued strength and growth. Did this trend continue for the state’s 2015 housing market? We will give you an overview of the field and its influencing factors below, as well as highlight the best places to live in Kansas from a real estate point of view, based on the current housing market predictions for the area. But first, let’s take a look at how the overall economic climate of Kansas has been doing during the past year, in order to give the state’s housing market predictions a bit more context.
First of all, agriculture continues to be one of the strongest suits of the Kansas economy, making it continue to be one of the most productive agricultural states in the country, and also one of the most economically stable. Beyond the famous agriculture business which most of us associate Kansas with, the local economy also has some other hidden gems. For example, Kansas ranks 8th in the production of natural gas, nationwide, and also 8th in oil production. The aerodynamic industry is also a strong presence in Kansas, with several types of aerospace industries, including a few manufacturing plants, for plenty of corporations (even after Boeing moved its business out of the state in 2012-2013). With these assets, it’s no wonder that the post-recession recovery seemed to have gone smoothly for this state. According to the Bureau for Economic Analysis, the GDP of the state was $122.7 billion in 2008, making in the 32nd highest in the country. The personal income per capita was $35,013 the same year. Also, the unemployment rate in Kansas is of only 4.3% (as of April 2015), whereas the national average is of 6.0%, making the state’s economy a particularly reliable place to be in.
As for the housing market predictions in the area of Kansas, you will be pleased to know that the research Center for Real Estate (within the Wichita University) has released a very optimistic report on the Kansas real estate market of 2015 and beyond. In in, the Wichita experts agree that the good times of steady economic growth are here to stay for this market, and that the next year should bring further opportunities and gain for both potential home owners and real estate investors alike.
Influencing Factors for the 2015 Kansas Real Estate Market
- While there’s isn’t an official source for a median home value for the entire state of Kansas at this point, there are plenty of sub-values that can give you an idea of the Kansas real estate For a colorful overview in the form of a heat map, check out this Trulia report of how the average house values for various areas of Kansas tend to look like.
- On the other hand, we can definitely highlight more specific figures when the focus is one Kansas area at a time. The average home price in Kansas City, for example, is $128,975 (higher, for example, than the neighboring area of Missouri where the average home value is only $120,000). We will give more examples below with one area at a time, when discussing the best places to live in Kansas, from a real estate point of view.
- As for rents, the average rent price in Kansas is $1,050, still a bit lower than the national average (which is $1,381). The average rent list price per square foot is $0.84 (data according to Zillow experts).
- Mortgage delinquency, which usually plays an important role on other real estate markets (especially in the last recession-influenced years), doesn’t feature prominently here (which is a good thing both for the home owners and for the market’s health). Only 3.2% of mortgages are delinquent in Kansas at the time (meaning that the owners are late on their mortgage payments), while the national average is still of 6.0%. This enables some pretty favorable housing market predictions for the next year as well.
- As mentioned before, the unemployment rate in Kansas is only 4.3% (since April 2015), while the national average is 6.0%, which means people have a sustainable source of income, making the overall economy in general and the Kansas real estate field in particular more stable as well. Also, coupled with the fact that the cost of living in Kansas is only 88.8% as high as the U.S. average (meaning it’s cheaper to live in Kansas), this makes for a promising place to live in. Craigslist Kansas real estate and rental announcements are usually by the hundreds for each main city, and the same goes for the similar hubs as well (Trulia and Zillow, most notably).
Best Places to Live in Kansas
For this last in-depth part, let’s take a more detailed look at the facts and figures of the most prominent places of the Kansas real estate field. As a note, we will also discuss Kansas City here, although technically the city belongs to Missouri, not to the state of Kansas, because people usually tend to treat them together because of the name similarity.
To begin with, the Kansas City KS real estate market is not boasting with impressive values, but it’s steady and growing. The home values here aren’t really the highest in the state, but this is the place where the most transactions take place and where the investing projects are implemented most. According to the Zillow Kansas City KS index, the median home value here is $67,000, up by 7.5% since last year (and it’s quite an impressive rise) and predicted to rise by a further 3.7% in the next year. The Trulia Kansas City overview states that the average listing price for homes in the city was $148,280 at the end of September 2015, on an upwards trend.
As for the Wichita KS real estate market (the strongest and most important in the state), the median home value on this housing market is $107,100, up by 5.7% during the past year (according to Zillow experts). While the housing market predictions for the area of Wichita say the prices will very likely stay the same in the next year, the market is rated as a very healthy one (8.9 out of 10 rating), meaning the percentage of delinquent mortgages and other risky areas isn’t that high. There are only 3.6% delinquent mortgages, actually, compared to the national average of 6.0%. The median rent in Wichita is $850, while the median rent in Wichita Metro is $950.
The Topeka KS real estate is also looking good. The median home value here (again, according to Zillow data) is $88,300. It hasn’t changed during the past year, but the housing market predictions for the Topeka real estate indicate that the median price will rise by 6.1% in the next year. Also, the median rent price here is $812, just slightly higher than the median rent in Topeka Metro, which is $800.
If higher values are what might interest you as an investor, then you should turn your eyes to the Overland Park KS real estate business. The median home value here is $238,500, up by 6.2% since last year and predicted to rise further by 3.4% during the next year. Only 2.1% mortgages in Overland Park are delinquent, much lower than the national average of 6.0%.
Things aren’t looking bad in the Lawrence KS real estate field either. The median home value in Lawrence, according to Zillow data, is $163,400, down by just 0.1% from the same time last year, and with a predicted increase of 3.0% until the next year. As for rents, the median rent value is $900 in Lawrence and $950 in the Lawrence Metro area.
Last, but not least, the Olathe KS real estate business is a valuable and thriving one as well. The median home value here according to Zillow data is $199,600, up by 6.1% since last year and predicted to rise by a further 3.3% in the next year as well. The rents are quite pricey as well, making the Olathe real estate field be quite a profitable venture for who can afford it: the median rent in Olathe is currently at $1,600, while the median rent in the Olathe Metro area is $975 (considerably lower).