How Far Will That Salary Go? Ranking Housing Costs in Idaho’s Top 10 Largest Cities

When hunting for jobs in Idaho’s cities, it is important to know what you pay for housing. We reviewed the 10 most populated cities in Idaho  and ranked their housing costs. While there are over 200 cities in Idaho, many have populations of just 200 or less. Accordingly, most jobs in Idaho are centered in larger cities.

Where to Look For Jobs In Idaho

According to the 2010 census, the 10 most populous cities in Idaho, from greatest to smallest, are: Boise, Nampa, Meridian, Idaho Falls, Pocatello, Caldwell, Coeur d’Alene, Twin Falls, Lewiston, and Post Falls. Some of the population has changed since the 2010 census, of course. For instance, Meridian has now overtaken Nampa as the 2nd most populous city.

The Highest Housing Cost In Idaho

The cost of housing in Meridian is the highest in the State of Idaho. According to information gathered by the census bureau, the median gross rent in Meridian from 2011 to 2015 was $1003 per month. Compare that to Pocatello, which is the lowest in the state, with a median gross rent of just $616 per month during the same period.

Equally interesting are the median home values of owner occupied homes from 2011 to 2015. Meridian has the highest value at $191,000. In this case, Caldwell has the lowest median home value at $104,600. However, Pocatello has the third lowest home values with a median value of $133,700.

Where Does Boise Fit in

In the Boise Metro area many people live in the Nampa-Caldwell area and work in Boise. Micron, Boise State University and the Idaho State Government all create a lot of opportunities for jobs in Idaho. Interestingly, Boise’s median  gross rent is $805 which places it lower than Meridian and Coeur d’Alene.

Northern Idaho

Home costs in northern Idaho are slightly higher than the Boise area. In Coeur d’Alene and Post Falls, the median gross rents are $821 and $823 respectively. However, gross median home value is $170,600 in Coeur d’Alene compared to Post Falls at $164,400.

Eastern Idaho Cities

Eastern Idaho has some of the greatest values in the state. In the eastern part of Idaho, Pocatello is a little more affordable than Idaho Falls with rents at $616 and home values at $133,700. On the other hand Idaho Falls comes in at $696 for rent and home values at $140,700.

The least expensive rents to highest

We reviewed the cost of rent, the cost of home owner occupied housing, and the costs associated with home ownership. With those three criteria in mind the following is the list of the 10 largest cities in Idaho with the least expensive housing costs to the most expensive.

Accordingly, Caldwell is the most affordable city in Idaho with Pocatello and Twin Falls coming in at second and third. Next we have  Nampa and Lewiston at fourth and fifth. We see the housing costs in the these next cities going higher with Post Falls, Coeur d’Alene, Boise, and the most expensive Meridian.

The cost of your housing in Idaho is important in relation to the salary being offered. Many employers recognize the difference. Be sure to check closely and find a job that provides  enough for you to pay the rent or mortgage.

See our source data: Idaho Housing Affordability by City