The 4-county Metropolitan Milwaukee housing market was as hot as the weather in July, boiling 29.2% over July of 2011.
Historically low interest rates, low prices and improved consumer confidence – despite recent fluctuations – have helped the market tremendously; generating double-digit sales growth for more than a year.
The ‘Great Recession’ provided an abundance of available properties for sale, however, that 5-year trend ended this spring as inventory of available homes for sale dwindled, currently sitting at 7.8-months.
July continued that trend with a 0.09% decline in homes listed for sale. A very small decrease compared to the 12.85% decrease in June, but the continuation of a trend since the beginning of the year – occurring at the same time sales have increased – resulting in inventory levels not seen since the early 2000s.
The combination of high sales and low inventory appears to be placing some pressure on prices, via multiple offers on homes, not in initial listing prices. In fact, the 2nd quarter of this year we saw two counties with price increases. Prices in Washington County were up 1% and Walworth County was up 1.3% over the 2nd quarter of 2011.
Sellers should be very cautious about pricing their home or starting with a price higher than their REALTOR® recommends, because buyers are still requesting discounts and concessions. A more prudent action would be to price a home correctly for the community and neighborhood it is in, and see if it attracts multiple offers.
County-by-County Sales Analysis for July compared to 2011:
Milwaukee County up 29.2% in sales (899 units vs. 696 units)
Waukesha County was up 32.5% (505 sales compared with 381)
Washington County was up 43.6% (145 vs. 101)
Ozaukee County also up 5.4% (117 units vs. 111 units)
Racine County down 3.9% in sales (172 units vs. 179 units)
Kenosha County was up 38.6% in sales (158 units vs. 114 units)
Walworth County up 35.6% in sales (122 units vs. 90 units)
The Greater Milwaukee Association of REALTORS® is a 4,000-member strong professional organization dedicated to providing information, services and products to “help REALTORS® help their clients” buy and sell real estate.