First Quarter Home Sales Stable Until COVID-19 Crisis

Apr 27, 2020

Credit Pixabay.com mohamed_hassan

The Wisconsin existing home market was on solid footing in the first quarter of the year and was on track to have strong sales in the spring and summer. That’s before the COVID-19 pandemic hit and hurt economic activity. That word from the Wisconsin Realtors Association.

Economist David Clark says the first three months of the year were the best numbers since 2007 with sales up more than six percent from a year ago. Median prices will also up about 12 percent. Clark says those homes were in the pipeline of closing. Then came the coronavirus impact in April...

"If you look cumulatively at how many of those have taken place between January of this year and April 15, the increase in those cancelations, expirations and withdrawls was 22 percent higher this year than last year..."

In northern Wisconsin, sales were up just over one percent and median prices were up almost 8 percent this first quarter compared to the same quarter one year ago. Dr. Clark says some sellers are stepping back to see what the future holds, especially people who are still living in their homes while they try to sell it. He says they don't want strangers walking in their homes with the threat of COVID-19.

He says the economy is likely entering into a recession brought on by the pandemic, which will affect home sales. Clark says only time will tell how fast the economy bounces back.