MADISON - Existing single-family home sales in
June saw positive gains for the first time this year, and median
home prices were up slightly in Wisconsin.
The Wisconsin Realtors Association released its
monthly report Monday, which shows June’s home sales rose 4.5
percent compared with June 2013, while the average price of a
home inched forward 0.6 percent over the same period.
“This is a welcome sign since June is our most
important month for sales,” said Steve Lane, chairman of the WRA
board of directors. “In a typical year, Wisconsin sells
approximately 11.5 percent of its homes in June, which is more
than any other month of the year, so strong sales in June is
All regions saw positive gains in June sales,
with double-digit growth seen in the West and Central regions,
up 15.6 percent and 10.1 percent, respectively. Home sales were
ahead between 3 percent and 6 percent in the South Central,
North and Northeast regions. Sales in the eight-county Southeast
region, including Waukesha and Milwaukee counties, were ahead
However, Lane cautioned that even a solid showing
in June won’t completely erase the weak winter and spring sales
the state experienced in the real estate market. Through the
first half of 2014, statewide sales were down 4.9 percent
compared with the first six months of 2013.
The Southeast region is behind 6.9 percent over
the same period a year ago. The Northeast region, which
stretches from Fond du Lac to Marinette counties, trails by just
The statewide median price of homes stood at
$159,900 in June compared with the same month last year. All
eight counties in the Southeast region saw positive gains; the
region was up 1.8 percent.
This year to date, the statewide median price
jumped to $145,000, an increase of 3.6 percent over the first
six months of 2013. The Southeast region is ahead by 4.1 percent
over last year, second only to the 11.7 percent jump in the
The annual statewide pace of median prices grew
5.7 percent in the fourth quarter of 2013, 4.4 percent in the
first quarter of 2014, and 1.7 percent in the second quarter of
2014 relative to the same quarter in 2013.
“Fortunately, our price increases have moderated
compared to late last year and early in 2014,” WRA President and
CEO Michael Theo said.
The uptick in prices and slight increases in
interest rates in June have pushed affordability down, the WRA
believes. The Wisconsin Housing Affordability Index, which
measures the percent of the median-priced home that a median
family income can afford, showed a mark of 206 in June 2014
compared with 220 in June 2013.
Meanwhile, both inventory levels and foreclosure
activity appear to have steadied. Inventories statewide stood at
10.1 months of available supply, which is nearly the same as
last year; however, metropolitan counties have only 7.7 months
of supply compared with 16.4 months of available inventory in
All told, the inventory of homes for sale
statewide in June 2014 was 57,267, an increase of 1.6 percent
over June 2013. The inventory includes residential single
family, duplexes, condominiums and townhouse properties.
“Whereas urban markets are relatively balanced,
rural counties continue to be buyer’s markets with ample supply
available, which should translate into great opportunities in
those parts of the state,” Theo said.
Residential foreclosures are down 22.5 percent
for the first six months of 2014 compared with the first half of
2013, the WRA said. The reduction in foreclosures is essentially
the same across metropolitan and rural counties, and the decline
is similar in the first and second quarters of the year.
“High levels of foreclosures create a drag on
local housing markets, and while Wisconsin didn’t see the
extreme level of foreclosure activity as other parts of the
country, it’s good to see continued reduction of foreclosure
activity in the state,” Theo said.
The following statewide real estate data is
through the first six months of June 2014 compared with the same
period in 2013
Change: +1.3 percent
Change: -4.9 percent
Median sales price
Change: +3.6 percent
Wisconsin Realtors Association