Intro to Bozeman

What’s Happening In Ranch Sales in Montana?

by Liz Nitz

What’s Happening In Ranch Sales in Montana?

Montana ranch sales more than doubled from 2019 to 2020. We saw a flood of wealthy buyers in search of wide open spaces to relax and play. There is a mystique to Montana thanks to movies and books and I don’t think people have been disappointed as new buyers keep coming to our beautiful state.

It’s important to keep in mind that ranch sales farm sales should be considered a whole classification. You can’t really dig deep into price per square foot because there is a huge range of criteria that affect pricing. Think water rights, structure on land, location, out buildings, etc.

Our MLS covers Butte to just outside Billings and over to the Wyoming border. Sprinkled in are a few random listings that show up because agents choose to list here. Here are the basic stats:

  • 2018: There were 28 listings sold in the farm and ranch sales category. Average days on market was 267 and there was a total sales volume of $54,074,125.
  • 2019: There were 25 listings sold in the farm and ranch category. Average days on market was 315 and there was a total sales volume of $53, 300, 418.
  • 2020: There were 63 listings sold in the farm and ranch category. Average number of days on market was 197 and there was a whopping total of $119,500,926.


What Trends Are Ranches Seeing?

Ranches have been transitioning from agricultural to investment and recreation.

  • Land value used to be the income you could make from farming/ranching. It’s now based largely on recreational pursuits, aesthetics, development and investment potential. The pandemic may have accelerated that trend. You can see from the 2020 sales numbers that listings and sales more than doubled. People wanted a place to escape the uncertainty of big cities. Montana’s wide open spaces and plethora of outdoor activities fit the bill for a lot of buyers.


Marrying economic viability with ecological sustainability is becoming front of mind.

  • Renewable energy: As more cities convert to carbon neutral over the next 20 years, ways to provide renewable energy is being heavily considered. If you have a piece of land that meets all the logistical requirements of operating a bigger solar and wind farm, it could be an income source for the future.
  • Holistic land management: This idea of operating a ranch with a wider ecosystem in mind has been gaining more traction recently. That might have to do with a younger generation taking over their family ranches. It’s not just about all the requirements of raising cattle. Holistic land management aims to create a profitable operation that is sustainable for the soil, water and native species on the land.
  • Conservation easements: These easements are used to protect land, water and endangered native species from future development. Landowners get paid or receive a tax break for the easement on their land.



Savory Institute is a global movement of regenerative farmers and land managers.

Polyface Farms and Joel Salatin in Virginia are famous for their regenerative farming practices.

Hall and Hall and Fay Ranches are two of Montana’s biggest ranch brokers.

Montana Land RelianceThe Nature Conservancy, The World Wildlife Fund are all conservation organizations that work with Montana land owners.

Montana has seen a lot of shifts happening. As more out-of-town buyers look into Bozeman, Missoula and Whitefish, many long-time residents are considering moves to smaller places like Lewistown and Dillon. If you have any questions about what’s happening in Bozeman and Montana real estate feel free to contact me at


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334 Herstal Way, Bozeman, Montana 59718

334 Herstal Way, Bozeman, Montana 59718

Form & Function are on display in this concise and well-appointed plan by Higher Standard Homes. Living room with laminate hardwood seamlessly flows through the dining area and into the kitchen which features quartz counter tops, stainless appliances, modern Bellmont cabinets and large slab island. Upper level boasts spacious master with dual vanities, tile surround shower and walk-in closet.

3010 W Villard Street 1F, Bozeman, Montana 59718

3010 W Villard Street 1F, Bozeman, Montana 59718

Well maintained and move-in ready upper level 3B/2B condo in Morgan Creek. This home also has a 1 car detached garage and spacious bedrooms. Fantastic central Bozeman location.

391 Annie Glade Drive, Bozeman, Montana 59718

391 Annie Glade Drive, Bozeman, Montana 59718

This lovely, light-filled home in Elk Grove is located at the end of cul-de-sac on a larger lot with a beautifully landscaped & fenced yard that backs to open space. This well-appointed home includes 4 bedrooms, 2.5 baths plus office and guest cabin. The main level master features a large ensuite bathroom with soaker tub. Beautiful hardwood floors cover the main living spaces and bedrooms.

1028 Boylan Road, Bozeman, Montana 59715

1028 Boylan Road, Bozeman, Montana 59715

Fantastic and flexible single level floor plan in Bridger Creek Subdivision is under construction and expected to be completed by mid-March 2022. High quality finishes include an extensive cabinetry package, custom built ins, tile, luxury vinyl flooring and quartz counters. Matte black fixtures enhance the sleek modern flair of this 2700 + Sf home.

1045 Boylan Road 3, Bozeman, Montana 59715

1045 Boylan Road 3, Bozeman, Montana 59715

Great condo in a great location! Situated on the number 6 hole on Bridger Creek Golf Course, this light filled condo is central to all that is great about living in SW MT! Minutes to downtown Bozeman, surrounded by trails, and easy to hop on the walking or bike path to the M and Drinking Horse Mountain. Golf all summer and xc ski on the groomed trails out your back door all winter.

2400 Durston 8, Bozeman, Montana 59718

2400 Durston 8, Bozeman, Montana 59718

Beautifully updated and move in ready, single level home in the desirable Willwobrook Condos. This home features a large master suite w/walk-in closet, private fenced patio and a remodeled 3/4 bath with gorgeous walk-in shower. Luxurious new wool carpet. Granite counters in kitchen and 2nd bath. Kitchen features newer stainless appliances, pull outs in lower cabinets and a sizable pantry.

6651 Gooch Hill Road, Bozeman, Montana 59718

6651 Gooch Hill Road, Bozeman, Montana 59718

Great horse property just minutes to downtown. This home has had many updates, including new paint, flooring, fixtures, hardware, lighting, bathroom etc. in 2021/2022. Perfect set-up for the horse lover, with multiple pastures, barn with stalls, tack area, hay storage, round pen, and various outbuildings. 4 beds and 3.5 baths in the house gives you plenty of room.

305 Michael Grove Avenue 2A, Bozeman, Montana 59718

305 Michael Grove Avenue 2A, Bozeman, Montana 59718

Single-level, 2-bedroom 2-bath, newly painted, ground floor, corner unit condo with lots of natural light from north and eastern-facing windows. Open concept living and dining area, opening up to small patio. Main entry is a preferred south facing entry. Condo has central air conditioning(!), a 1-car detached garage with loft storage, and a reserved parking space.

439 N 10th, Bozeman, Montana 59715

439 N 10th, Bozeman, Montana 59715

GREAT LOCATION! Close to Bozeman Senior High School 4BR 2BA Rancher with full basement and CONVERTED SHOP to a 400SF+ STUDIO/COTTAGE, additional living space in the backyard. Studio has 3/4 bath, small kitchenette w/sink, AC/Heat Mini split, stacked W/D, gas stove heater and walk-in closet. EXTRA PARKING accessed from alley.
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Windermere Downtown logo Bozeman Real Estate Agent Liz Nitz

Windermere Downtown Bozeman

135 E Main St.

Bozeman, MT 59715

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