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Business & Economics

Home Sales Continue To Grow Though Inventories Tightening

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State realtors say despite low inventories of houses on the market in urban areas, both home sales and median prices finished the summer ahead of last year.

The Wisconsin Realtors Association releases a monthly update and economist David Clark says home sales in August set a record, running slightly ahead of sales last August , making it the strongest August for home sales since 2005. Year-to-date sales are also at their highest level, with more than 55,000 homes sold through August this year.

Clark says tightening inventories are bringing prices up....

".....if you look at the year to date, prices are up about 6.1 percent. Sales are up about three-tenths of a percent. A consistent story whether you're looking at August or whether you're looking at the full 8-month period...."

In the 18-county northern region, prices are up five percent to $147,000 and sales were up about 7 percent to more than 5,100 units sold. Clark says statewide they have about 5 months of available housing supply, but in metropolitan areas, they only have about 4 months of inventory...

"...in the rural parts of the state there is stronger supply available so that keeps those prices from spiking as rapidly as they are in those urban metropolitan areas...."

Clark says the economy continues strong with affordable interest rates and with most people having jobs.