Nebraska Housing Market

Learn more about the housing market in Nebraska

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Nebraska Housing Market Trends & Forecast

July 2, 2024

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Every state is unique when it comes to the real estate market. That’s why it’s critical to understand the market you live or operate in. Whether you’re renting, buying, or selling Nebraska homes, it will impact many aspects of your life.

Nebraska Housing Market Overview 

Nebraska is in the vast grassland prairies and plateaus of the Great Plains. Given its nickname as the Cornhusker State, it is no surprise that Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing, and Hunting was the second-highest contributor to Nebraska’s GDP last year, according to data from IBISWorld 

Real Estate, Rental, and Leasing was the fourth highest contributor to Nebraska’s GDP in 2023, making the state’s housing market an interesting topic for further exploration. 

At the beginning of the year, experts predicted that the housing market in Nebraska would continue to see rising housing prices after historic median prices in 2023. However, it was also anticipated that interest rates would decrease and stabilize after reaching historic highs of nearly 8% in late 2023. As of April 2024, both predictions have come true. Average home prices have increased while interest rates have smoothed.

In fact, historically high interest rates have seen a significant decrease across the country. The national average 30-year fixed mortgage rate in late 2023 approached 8% but settled in April 2024 to just below 7%. As we will discuss later in this article, a similar trend can be seen in the Nebraska housing market, reflecting easing inflation that is bound to benefit a growing demographic of prospective homeowners across the country.

Nebraska Market Trends

To understand the Nebraska real estate market, it’s important to keep up with trends. Let’s look at some key ones in Nebraska:

Note: These statistics are based on Redfin’s monthly housing data from April 2024 

Median Home Price

The median sale price of a home in Nebraska as of April 2024 was $296,500 according to Redfin’s monthly housing market data. This is an increase of 2.1% from April 2023, accurately reflecting predictions of continually rising average list price in the state. In Omaha, the most populous city in the state, the median home value is currently slightly lower at $277,000, although it is experiencing a similar appreciation rate at 2.6% from April 2023.

Number of Homes Sold in April 2024 

2,137 homes were sold in Nebraska in April 2024, which is a 4.8% increase from the previous year. This number can be expected to increase throughout the summer when home sales are much more common. Though this is a significant increase from the previous year, it falls short of peaks that were seen in the summers of 2021 and 2022. 

However, it is important to keep in mind that nationally speaking, sales usually peak during the spring and summer months and slow in the winter. In fact, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) predicts that in February and March alone, sales activity increases by as much as 34% and prices by 3%.

Median Days on Market (DOM)

Days on market (DOM) is a measure of the average length of time a home remains listed on the market before being put under contract. A lower DOM signals a highly competitive seller’s market with more pressure on buyers to make higher offers and remove contingencies. A higher DOM signals a buyer’s market as sales are slower and sellers have less leverage. 

The median DOM in Nebraska in April 2024 was 15 days, which is an increase from 11 the previous year. This means that, on average, listings spend about two weeks on the market before they are purchased. This short period generally indicates a seller’s market, although an increase in DOM signifies movement more toward buyers’ favor despite rising prices.

New Supply Statistics

In April 2024, there were about 5.46 new residential construction permits per 1,000 people in Nebraska. This statistic, which can be indicative of the rate of housing supply growth, is slightly above the national average. Increased housing supply is predicted to ease housing prices and increase affordable homes in many markets across the U.S. in 2024.

Property Tax Rate

According to Rocket Mortgage, the average property tax rate in Nebraska is 1.63%. This is the seventh highest average rate of any state in the country, and the average annual property tax is around $5,982.37. However, it is important to keep in mind that this statistic reflects the average of a lot of data in a populous state with significant geographic and economic diversity. Tax rates are likely to vary depending on the value of a home and its location in the state.

Foreclosure Rate in Q1 of 2024

IN the first quarter of 2024, 1 in every 3,490 homes in Nebraska experienced a foreclosure filing according to recent data from ATTOM. This rate is considerably lower than the national average, and Nebraska is ranked 42nd for its foreclosure rate nationwide.

Hottest Local Markets in Nebraska 

Nebraska features several great local housing markets for homeowners and real estate investors. We review a few of these below.

  1. Omaha

As we mentioned earlier in this article, Omaha is the most populous city in Nebraska. While its median home price of $277,000 is lower than the statewide average, its median DOM of 8 days suggests a very competitive housing market in Omaha Nebraska, where a plethora of buyers are competing for homes. Some of the most popular neighborhoods in Omaha include Benson, Northwest Omaha, and Maple Village. 

  1. Lincoln

Lincoln is the capital city of Nebraska and the second most populous city behind Omaha. Its median housing price in April 2024 was $290,000, an increase of 1.8% from April 2023, and its median DOM of 14 days is lower than the statewide average, suggesting a more competitive market. Some of the most popular neighborhoods in Lincoln are New South, Country Club, and University Place.

  1. Bellevue

Located on the eastern edge of the state along its border with Idaho, Bellevue’s median DOM of 6 days marks it as a highly competitive market compared not only to the statewide average, but also to its more populous contemporaries like Omaha and Lincoln. Bellevue’s median housing price in April 2024 was $289,500, which is close to the statewide average and a 7.2% increase from April 2023. Some of the most popular neighborhoods in Bellevue include Northwest Bellevue, Bellevue Boulevard West, and Old Towne.

Economic Factors Impacting the Nebraska Housing Market 

A holistic view of Nebraska’s housing market requires a basic understanding of the main economic drivers affecting the market. Let’s take a look at a few critical ones below:

Mortgage Rates

Mortgage rates are a common cause of concern for would-be homeowners across the U.S. in 2024. As previously mentioned, national averages have dipped from last fall’s record highs, and Nebraska is no different. According to Zillow, the average 30-year fixed mortgage rate in Nebraska was 6.47% in June 2024. This accurately reflects previous predictions for the Nebraska mortgage market, in which rates were expected to fall from the record highs of the previous autumn but remain above 6%.

Inflation and Cost of Living

Mortgage rates are tied to inflation, another massive contributing factor to the affordability of housing and the state of housing markets in general. Inflation has increased the cost of living for many across the U.S., including in Nebraska. This means fewer people can truly afford to limit housing costs to less than 30% of their monthly income.

Population Changes and Demographics

A changing population can also have implications for the housing market. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate in Nebraska is 2.1% (the fourth lowest rate in the country), suggesting a healthy and thriving economy that is bound to attract new potential homeowners and increase demand for homes for sale in the state.

Nebraska Housing Market Forecast 2024

As previously mentioned, appreciating costs in late 2023 led experts to predict that the 2024 Nebraska housing market would continue to see rising prices. This has proven true so far throughout the year, and it is expected to continue into the summer. However, steadying interest rates and an increase in supply may indicate that the rate of appreciation will slow and stabilize.

Likelihood of Nebraska Housing Market Crash

Though the continued appreciation of prices in the Nebraska housing market may seem concerning, experts maintain that a housing market crash is significantly unlikely. There are many reasons for this prediction, including that the state’s low unemployment rate points to a thriving economy of workers and that soaring interest rates settled in the first quarter of the year. The market seems poised to continue appreciating and to attract buyers, but it is unlikely to reach any significant or worrying thresholds in the near future.

Forecast for the U.S. Housing Market

Now that we’ve looked at Nebraska’s housing market, let’s zoom out a little bit. What about the U.S. housing market? What do you need to keep an eye on in the coming years?  

The United States’ current median existing-home sale price is around $384,500 per the National Association of Realtors. The inventory, though, remains low. A balanced market typically has a 5-to-6-month supply, but the current figure is 2.9.

We’re currently in a seller’s market with buyers looking at continued rising house prices. The same trend can be seen with renters. Housing continues to appreciate, in general.

Dr. Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist and Senior Vice President of Research, National Association of Realtors, believes the housing market will appreciate 15 to 25% over the next five years. He thinks that the seller’s market will continue because housing inventory will remain low. In five years, however, he predicts a more balanced market, in which neither party has a built-in advantage. Thus, the market will shift to a case-by-case basis to determine what kinds of deals people can get.  

Hybrid work also impacts the housing market. This shift in work culture means suburbia will continue to grow. States like Texas, the Carolinas, Tennessee, and Florida should see continual growth.

The number of single-family homes built decreased over the past couple years while the number of multi-family homes increased due to lower prices and a demand for affordable housing. Higher mortgage rates and inflation (affecting price of materials) were the main causes.

Lower income households continue to struggle in the current housing market. This trend appears likely to continue into the foreseeable future. Without enhanced supply or helpful subsidies, the outlook is that many Americans will still wrestle with housing affordability in the years to come.

Nebraska Rental Market

The rental and buying market are obviously closely linked. When home prices fall, landlords are more likely to buy properties to rent out. Home prices and rental prices are correlated as well because a hot market means prices rise.

Rents were more unaffordable than ever in 2021 and 2022. In 2022, 22.4 million households paying rent said it was unaffordable, which is the highest that figure has ever been, according to a January report from the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University. The study found that half of all renters in the United States spent over 30% of their income on rent and utilities.

The markets cooled in 2023, though, due to new units and decelerating demand. But a serious problem persists: Rent increases are still outpacing income gains.

Moreover, high interest rates are keeping borrowing and transaction activity down. Over half the banks surveyed by the Federal Reserve reported that demand for multifamily loans decreased year-over-year.

The pandemic caused a housing disparity that isn’t going away anytime soon. Unaffordable housing is a serious issue across America. Whether high rents or low income is the main cause doesn’t change the fact that this problem is widespread.

This short summary leads directly into Nebraska’s current rental market. Below are just a few of the current trends for Nebraska’s rental market based on data pulled from Zillow:

Nebraska Rental Market Key Trends

  • Median rent: $1,300 
  • Month-over-month rent charge: $35 
  • Year-over-year rent charge: +$27 
  • Available rentals: 1,754

Conclusion

Nebraska is a state of varying landscapes, industries, and economies. Therefore, it stands to reason that the housing market in different areas in the state will be diverse. In general, however, 2024 has seen continued appreciation but maintains indicators of a healthy housing market that buyers and sellers alike should watch closely. Experts and analysts will continue to monitor this market, as well as nationwide factors like interest rates and new construction.

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