We try to stay out of politics, especially when it comes to quirky candidates who go viral for the cringiest or silliest reasons. That said, we’re starting to think that Jimmy McMillian wasn’t all that crazy, after all. 

Photo by Robert Ritchie on Unsplash
Photo by Robert Ritchie on Unsplash
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Who’s Jimmy McMillan? The leader of the New York-based “The Rent is 2 Damn High Party,” whom Kenan Thompson flawlessly parodied on Saturday Night Live. Who knew when this sketch aired in 2010 that it would hit so close to home in Boise in 2022?! 

We’re seeing stories like this over and over again on social media. People in Boise are finding themselves in situations where they have to quickly make an unplanned move because their apartment complex management has elected to renovate their unit. In some cases, the complexes have offered to move the tenants to an updated unit…for a monthly rate 75% higher than what they are currently paying. Who can pivot and budget like that in just 30 days?! The rent is too damn high.  

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We’re in a situation where we’re considering a move ourselves. We looked at a three-bedroom apartment in Meridian quoted at $1755 a month. Someone snatched it before we could finish our application. While there are no three-bedroom units left at that complex, their website is showing $2,167 a month for the same unit just 10 DAYS LATER. The rent is too damn high. 

How Dramatically Has Rent Risen in Boise? 

Zumper has tracked rental trends in real-time for nearly a decade. Based on their data, the average rent in Boise has risen nearly 36% since March 2020. Year-to-year, it’s gone up 15%. It’s one of the most dramatic increases in the country and renters don’t know what to do. Many are renting because they’re not in a position to buy in Boise’s hot and overvalued housing market. Renting used to be a more affordable option that would allow people to squirrel away some money each month to eventually use toward a down payment on a home. But now? Renters fear living paycheck to paycheck. 

It’s gotten bad enough that renters are thinking about leaving Boise for good, but where will they go if they do leave the City of Trees? Apartment List tracked outbound searches from January-March 31, 2022 to put that puzzle together. These were the nine cities outside the Boise metro that renters were most interested in during the first quarter of this year.

Boise's Out of Control Apartment Prices Send Residents Fleeing to These 9 Cities

During the first quarter of 2022, Apartment List saw the most outbound searches from Boise targeting these 9 cities. Rental price data is from Zumper.com. Median income figures are from the United States Census Bureau.

KEEP READING: 20 Photos of the Least Expensive Houses You Can Buy in Boise

In mid-May 2022, the cheapest house (no mobile homes were considered) you could buy in Boise was $329,900. One home had that price tag. A second only cost $100 more, so we took a look at that one as well. Let's just say that one's probably going to be an easier sale than the other!

A Former Californian's Advice to Californians Moving to Idaho

"Philo," a user on Bestplaces.net moved to Boise from Fresno in 2014. Like other California transplants, navigating the waters of moving to the Gem State from California has been tricky at times. He offered these tips to others in that situation to make things a little easier.