The Idaho Homestead Exemption

Homeowners can use the Idaho homestead exemption to protect home equity from bankruptcy creditors.

By , Attorney

Most people want to know whether they can keep valuable property before filing for bankruptcy—especially a home. If you qualify to use the Idaho homestead exemption, you can protect some or all of the equity in your house. In this article, we explain how much the Idaho homestead exemption will cover and how to apply it in your bankruptcy case.

For more bankruptcy information, read Filing for Bankruptcy in Idaho. Not only will you find answers, but it includes helpful checklists and a link to an interactive bankruptcy quiz.

Homestead Exemptions Available in an Idaho Bankruptcy

You'll use Idaho's state exemptions in Idaho. Although some states allow residents to choose between state and federal bankruptcy exemptions, the federal exemptions aren't available in Idaho. However, you can supplement Idaho's state exemptions with the federal nonbankruptcy exemptions.

To help you make an informed choice, we've listed the homestead exemption amount below. We've also included links to the federal and state exemption lists that apply in your case, so you'll have an easier time deciding whether bankruptcy will work for you.

Spouses can double some exemption amounts if you're married, but not all. Find out about other filing considerations for spouses.

Idaho Homestead Exemption

Homestead Exemption Amount


Can spouses who file a joint bankruptcy double the exemption?


Homestead Exemption Law

Idaho Code § 55-1003

Other Information

Amounts are subject to change.

Where to find other exemptions.

Filing for Bankruptcy in Idaho

Federal Nonbankruptcy Exemptions

Property Protected by the Idaho Homestead Exemption

In Idaho, the homestead exemption applies to real property, including your home, condominium, or mobile home. It isn't necessary to occupy the property to claim the exemption; however, if you don't, you must record a homestead declaration before taking advantage of the homestead exemption. The homestead exemption also applies to sale proceeds for up to six months after the sale of the property.

Timing Your Idaho Bankruptcy

You can file for bankruptcy in Idaho after living there for more than 180 days. However, you must live in Idaho much longer before using Idaho exemptions—at least 730 days before filing, to be exact. Otherwise, you'd use the previous state's exemptions.

But suppose you lived in multiple states during the two years before filing for bankruptcy. In that case, you'd use the exemptions of the state you lived in for most of the 180 days before the two-year period immediately preceding your filing. (11 U.S.C. § 522(b)(3)(A).) Learn more about filing for bankruptcy after moving to a new state.

Also, to claim the total value of the Idaho homestead exemption, you must have purchased and owned the property for at least 1,215 days before the bankruptcy filing. If you can't meet this requirement, your homestead exemption is limited by federal law to $189,050 for cases filed between April 1, 2022, and March 31, 2025.

Learn more about this requirement, the current amount of the federal cap, and other important exceptions to homestead exemptions.

Claiming the Idaho Bankruptcy Homestead Exemption

In Idaho, the homestead exemption is automatic—you don't have to file a homestead declaration with the recorder's office to claim the homestead exemption in bankruptcy. However, if you don't yet occupy the property, you must file a homestead declaration (a form filed with the county recorder's office to put on record your right to a homestead exemption) before you file for bankruptcy to claim the homestead exemption. Contact your county recorder for information on how to file a homestead declaration.

When filing for bankruptcy, you'll list your homestead exemption on Schedule C: The Property You Claim as Exempt when completing your bankruptcy forms. You can find out about other requirements you'll need to meet in Your Home in Chapter 7 or Your Home in Chapter 13.

Finding the Idaho Bankruptcy Homestead Exemption Statute

Idaho's homestead exemption is in the Idaho Code at § 55-1003 on the Idaho Legislature website. Still, the best way to protect your assets is by consulting with a local bankruptcy lawyer.

Need More Bankruptcy Help?

Did you know Nolo has made the law easy for over fifty years? It's true, and we want to ensure you find what you need. Below you'll find more articles explaining how bankruptcy works. And don't forget that our bankruptcy homepage is the best place to start if you have other questions!

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Helpful Bankruptcy Sites

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We wholeheartedly encourage research and learning, but online articles can't address all bankruptcy issues or the facts of your case. The best way to protect your assets in bankruptcy is by hiring a local bankruptcy lawyer.

Updated September 20, 2023

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