Anyone who is considering buying land in Montana may be wondering if making a purchase like this is a sound investment.
Purchasing land anywhere can be a big decision, especially if you aren’t familiar with the area and need some help figuring out if this is a good idea or not. Purchasing land in Montana can especially be overwhelming because it is a state that – though beautiful – has not been heavily reviewed and therefore, feedback is sometimes hard to find.
You should buy land in Montana for these 8 reasons:
- you love nature
- you love solitude
- you are an adventurous person
- you are a risk taker
- the economy is booming
- the land is still (relatively) inexpensive
- taxes are low
- the sky is amazing
Buying property anywhere can feel intimidating, but when you are setting off to purchase something in a place you don’t know much about, it can feel especially hard. And buying land in a state like Montana is tough because there hasn’t been significant enough real estate activity there in the past to have a ton of data to go on to help you make your decision.
I love real estate and have a deep love for all states in the western part of America. I recently took a trip out west and fell in love with the idea of buying some land in that part of our country. Let me tell you why.
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8 Reasons Why You Should Buy Land in Montana
Located in the top west of the United States, Montana is the fourth largest state and is bordered by North Dakota to the east, Wyoming to the south, Idaho to the west, and the country of Canada to its north.
A landlocked state, Montana holds beautiful mountain ranges that draw tourists every year, and some of the best state parks in the United States, namely Yellowstone National Park.
If you’ve visited Montana, you’ll know why it’s referred to as the “Big Sky State.” Let’s explore other reasons you should consider buying land in this beautiful place.
1. You Love Nature
This may be the biggest reason to consider buying land in Montana. And believe me, it’s a big one.
As I mentioned before, Montana is the fourth largest state landwise, and what land it is! Whether you like to hike, bike, fish, hunt, or just spend time taking in the great outdoors, Montana has some of the most scenic and awe-inspiring locations you can imagine.
You aren’t going to run out of outdoor activities in this state. Not only that, but the weather that Montana boasts will keep you wanting to spend a good chunk of your time outside.
Though the winters can be cold, they are great for people who like lower temperatures. With an average snowfall of around 70 to 100 inches of snow each year (depending on where you’re located), this is a paradise for people who love the white stuff.
Summers are mild and dry, with an average temperature hovering around 80 degrees. And with little humidity, the air is crisp and clean and the long days are perfect for being out in nature well past the time people in hotter states are running for the air-conditioning.
2. You Love Solitude
Another highly rated reason why buying land in Montant may be for you is if you are a person who craves solitude.
Montana’s population is the eighth lowest in the United States, having been recorded at just over one million people in 2020.
Given that the entire city of New York has over eight million people, you can see how small Montana’s population is.
And, since the majority of people live in one of Montana’s cities like Billings, Bozeman, Helena, or Missoula, that means that if you decide to buy land in Montana and live on it, you aren’t going to be dealing with much in the way of neighbors.
It is not uncommon to go for days without seeing another soul if you live on land in Montana. For company, you can always travel to one of the afore-mentioned towns, but if being alone and able to spread out is appealing to you, then Montana is a great place to consider for the type of peace and privacy you are seeking.
3. You Are an Adventurous Person
Montana is not for the unadventurous. Living out in the middle of nowhere can have huge benefits for those who yearn for privacy and quiet, but it can also come at some costs if you were to find yourself in a pickle.
Many of the land plots in Montana can be hours from a town. This means that if you were to have an emergency, getting help may not be as easy as just making a quick phone call.
Even things like grocery shopping would have to be well-thought-out and planned ahead of time. Knowing how to fend for yourself and be resourceful are important parts of a person who wants to buy land in this great big state.
But if you have the kind of grit and adventurous spirit that’s needed to live in a place like Montana, you will enjoy how simple daily tasks aren’t just taken for granted out on that Montana land.
A license isn’t required to own a gun in Montana. Concealed carry is also allowed and it’s pretty common to see people with guns in just about every setting in Montana. Wildlife is rampant in this state and you may find yourself in a position of having to defend yourself against a wolf, grizzly bear, or rattlesnake.
If being adventurous is something that excites you, Montana isn’t going to disappoint!
4. The Economy is Booming
At a time when there seems to be a fair amount of economic uncertainty, buying land in a state where the economy is booming is going to seem attractive.
Agriculture is still the biggest driver of the economy in Montana. As there are over 2.5 million heads of beef cattle in the state, that means there’s more than twice as many cattle as there are humans!
Another big industry for the big sky state is outdoor recreation and tourism. With more than 4 million people visiting Yellowstone National Park alone each year, tourism plays a big role in this state’s success.
And in addition to Yellowstone, there are plenty of other national parks, rivers, lakes, and mountains for people to explore, which ends up bringing in over 12 million people each year and an impressive revenue stream of over 3 billion dollars as well.
Montana also has a growing craft beer scene and 5-star restaurants that keep people entertained and their wallets open.
The unemployment rate is also low, usually around 4 percent, which is well below the national average, and there are good jobs to be had in the agriculture, mining, logging, and service industries.
A state with a strong economy is a good place to consider buying land. Montana definitely checks this box for any potential property buyer.
5. The Land is Still (Relatively) Inexpensive
Even though the economy is booming in Montana, prices of land and real estate have continued to stay at a reasonable cost, which is a good reason to buy land now instead of waiting, when the prices will most likely start to climb.
In 2018, the average price of land in the state of Montana was around $2,000 per acre. Today that price hasn’t changed much at all which is impressive, given the booming housing market.
At $2,000 per acre, Montana comes in well below the national average, which typically tends to be between $5,500 to $8,500 for farmland and $10,500 in residential areas.
Even in a place like Iowa, which is not heavily populated, an acre of land in a rural setting is closer to $6,100.
The states of New Mexico and Wyoming have the lowest priced acreage, both boasting land prices of less than $1000 an acre.
But if Montana is where you want to buy land, you are going to see your dollars stretch much farther than they would in some of the other states in our country.
6. Taxes Are Low
Another big perk to buying land in Montana is the tax situation.
Ready for this one? Montana is one of only five states in the nation that does not have a sales tax. That’s right…whether you’re buying jeans and a belt buckle or a new pickup truck, you won’t be having a sales tax on your purchases tacked on to your final bill of sale.
Most states impose some sort of tax on all purchases being made. California has the highest state tax, at 7.25% while Colorado has the lowest at 2.9%.
But only Montana, Alaska, Oregon, New Hampshire, and Delaware don’t have a tax at all.
The income tax for Montana’s residents is also low, which is another nice perk that will allow your purchasing power of land to go even further.
Based on a progressive tax scale, a person’s income tax will vary from 1% to 6.9%, based on their earnings and what bracket they fall into.
Having lower taxes like this (and no taxes at all on some things) makes land ownership in Montana all the more attractive.
7. The Sky is Amazing
As I mentioned earlier, Montana is lovingly called the “Big Sky State” by locals, and once you spend some time there, you will immediately know why.
The plains of Montana have a breathtaking view and really give a person pause. Looking at long vistas and endless blue skies can be pretty amazing during the day. And at night, there is nothing more majestic than a dark sky full of twinkling stars.
With very little light pollution, the Montana sky seems as though it can go on forever. Buying a piece of land with an expansive landscape and what seems to be a never-ending sky can be a beautiful bonus to land ownership in this state.
Standing in the middle of your property, looking up at the majestic blue sky can feel exhilarating. And humbling at the same time.
8. They Aren’t Making More of It
This is an obvious one, but I needed to include it because it’s so true.
Land is finite. It is not a renewable resource and it is easy for us to sometimes take for granted. But we shouldn’t, because we only have so much of it.
Purchasing land anywhere is most likely going to hold its value, because there is just only so much left. But in a place like Montana, it would be hard to suggest that buying land won’t pay off in the long run, since it’s an investment in a place that has so many other things going for it as well.
And remember, you can’t use it up. Purchased land is your land, until you decide to do something else with it. Owning a piece of dirt, especially beautiful dirt in a place like Montana, will definitely pay off for you, financially and emotionally.
About THE AUTHOR
Brittany has been in the land business since 2020 when the world was starting to shut down. Since then, we’ve sold to dozens of people from ATV weekend warriors to camping enthusiasts to retired truck drivers. Our inventory spans mostly in the western United States. We’ve been trained by experience, land acquisition courses, and hundreds of hours meeting with county assessors and clerks, zoning officials, realtors, and land investors. We’ve answered hundreds of questions from people regarding the buying and use of land.Read More About Brittany Melling