Utah Thrives Podcast | The Growing Challenge of Housing Affordability in Utah

Written by: Peter Reichard

The Utah Foundation recently produced a brief on housing affordability as concerns in Utah have become increasingly acute.  In this edition of Utah Thrives,  Utah Foundation Senior Analyst Christopher Collard, President Peter Reichard and Vice President / Research Director Shawn Teigen discuss what they’ve been learning as they dig in on the housing cost issue. 

Op-Ed: Rising housing costs and rising concerns in Utah

Written by: Peter Reichard

Concerns about housing affordability in Utah have become acute, to say the least. In Utah Foundation surveys dating back to 2008, housing affordability had never been a top-10 issue. That changed in 2020. In an initial Utah Priorities survey before the economic shutdown, we found that housing affordability had surged to become the second most important issue. In a new survey several months later, it remained in the top 10, even after the pandemic crisis … Continued

Significant Statistics | Are Californians to Blame for Salt Lake’s Rising Housing and Rental Rates?

Written by: Christopher Collard

The Utah Foundation has released a series of Significant Statistics on the relative importance of housing affordability among Utah voters, noting the steep increases in housing prices and rental prices. Why are we seeing these increases? The Utah Foundation has looked at whether it might be due to an influx of Californians. That does not seem to be the whole answer. When looking at Utah’s larger metropolitan areas, the recent rate of people moving in … Continued

Significant Statistics | 2020 a standout year for home sale price escalation

Written by: Christopher Collard

Utah Foundation’s 2020 Utah Priorities Project found that housing affordability is a top issue to Utah voters. This is due in part to increasing housing prices. Based on data collected by Redfin (a real estate brokerage that publishes national housing data), Utah’s housing prices skyrocketed in 2020. (See Figure 1.) A study by bankrate.com found that over the course of 2020, Utah’s home home values increased by 15.4 percent, which was the third-highest increase among … Continued

Significant Statistics | Rents in Salt Lake area expensive from a national perspective, but not among Mountain State peers

Written by: Christopher Collard

Utah Foundation’s 2020 Utah Priorities Project found that housing affordability is a top issue to Utah voters. Previous Utah Foundation research indicated that housing affordability was of much greater concern among renters than homeowners.  While the increasing cost of owning a home is potentially offset by record low interest rates, there is no such offset for renters. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development uses a national survey to calculate the Fair Market Rent, … Continued

Significant Statistics | Priorities survey reveals divergent housing affordability concerns by age, political viewpoint, ethnicity

Written by: Christopher Collard

Utah Foundation had asked about housing prices in its 2008, 2010 and 2012 Utah Priorities Project surveys but housing had never been one of the top 10 issues. However, housing affordability was the second most important issue to Utah voters in early 2020. With the emergence of the coronavirus, concerns about housing affordability dropped to 7th – with just under one-third of Utahns ranking it in the top 5. (See Figure 1.) Interestingly, housing affordability … Continued

Significant Statistics | Housing Permits Plummet

Written by: Staff

UTAH HOUSING BUILDING PERMITS decreased from 3,070 in March to 2,089 in April, a 32% decrease.1 Interestingly, this came just after a March in which the greater Salt Lake City area (MSA) saw the highest number of housing permits in decades, and perhaps ever – over 1,500. The next month, they plummeted: April saw a decrease to just over 800.2 Meanwhile, regional housing start3 estimates across the West indicate a dramatic dropoff, from 325,000 in … Continued

Utah Thrives: Community Growth

Written by: Dan Bammes

Utah Foundation hosted a panel discussion on the challenges posed by Utah’s rapid population growth, issues explored in the research report Building a Better Beehive: Land Use Decision Making, Fiscal Sustainability and Quality of Life in Utah. The panelists included: Andrew Gruber, Wasatch Front Regional Council Robert Grow, Envision Utah Beth Holbrook, Utah Transit Authority Bryson Garbett, Garbett Homes Cameron Diehl, Utah League of Cities and Towns In this edition of Utah Thrives, we’ll hear … Continued

Utah’s Quality of Life – Video

Written by: Shawn Teigen

Utah Foundation occasionally surveys Utahns in an effort to understand how they feel about both their community and their personal quality of life. This video describes why Utah’s community quality of life is declining, and shows how quality of life is affected by demographic factors. This is all described in further detail in our report Utah Foundation Quality of Life Survey: Measuring Utahns’ Perceptions of their Communities, Personal Lives.  

Utah housing concerns center on Salt Lake County and renters

Written by: Peter Reichard

Housing affordability has become one of the biggest topics in recent public discourse. That makes sense: Housing prices in Utah have increased sharply during the past five years. The median sales price of a home rose from $207,000 in 2013 to $298,950 in 2018. Median rents in Utah have increased from $851 in 2012 to $986 in 2017. From a longer-term perspective, housing cost increases in both Utah and most other Western states have consistently … Continued