Iowa Housing Market Vitality

Market Rank


Iowa metro area house prices are forecasted to underperform the national market over the next twelve months. Currently, the market is underperforming the overall U.S. market. Compared to 12-months ago, Iowa’s housing market has strengthened. Current local economic conditions support an estimated 10.3% increase in house prices over the next twelve months. Based on the housing market vitality of the nine metro housing markets which comprise it, Iowa’s housing market ranks forty-sixth amongst all states and D.C. The three-month outlook is negative.

Housing Market Vitality

Housing Market Vitality summarizes the impact of economic conditions on house prices. A value of 100 corresponds to conditions supporting current price appreciation; values less than 100 correspond to a dampening effect and values greater than 100 indicate a positive impact on house prices. A housing market vitality value can be interpreted as a growth rate. Hence, a reading of 105.8 can be interpreted as a 5.8% annualized increase in house prices.

Iowa Metro Housing Markets

Iowa is comprised of nine metro housing markets that account for nearly 58% of the state’s population. The Hawkeye State metro housing markets are unique in their demographics and local economies and exhibit trends that are distinct from the national and state narrative. Each metro market presents its own unique opportunity.

Ames, IA Underperforming Negative354
Cedar Rapids, IA Underperforming Negative294
Davenport-Moline-Rock Island, IA-IL Underperforming Negative338
Des Moines-West Des Moines, IA Underperforming Negative321
Dubuque, IA Underperforming Negative383
Iowa City, IA Underperforming Negative376
Omaha-Council Bluffs, NE-IA Underperforming Negative247
Sioux City, IA-NE-SD Underperforming Negative244
Waterloo-Cedar Falls, IA Underperforming Negative372

Industry Specialization

Iowa’s state economy is specialized in Trade Trans Util, Fncl activities, and Manufacturing. Mining, Pro Bus svcs, and Construction industry sectors are less important to the state economy compared to the national economy.

Industry specialization helps explain the differing impact of industry trends on local economies in contrast to industry composition which describes the structure of the economy. A Specialization Index value greater than 100 corresponds to the sector having a greater share of the state economy than it does of the national economy. Sectors with a Specialization Index greater than 120 characterize the local economy.


Compared to the U.S., there is a lower incidence of poverty amongst Iowa residents and they have greater purchasing power. There are more high school graduates and a larger proportion of the population is college educated. Iowa’s population is comparatively less diverse than the overall U.S. population.

A Demographics Index value greater than 100 corresponds to the factor being more intense in the state versus the national average. Characteristics of the local population is a longer-term factor that influences the housing market.

Updated September 08, 2021 with data through July 2021