Downtown condo sales up 7 percent in 2017

Number of days on market down 50 percent in three years

Harbor Front Condominium in the Third Ward

The number of condominium sales throughout the downtown Milwaukee area was up 7 percent in 2017, indicating demand has returned since the condo boom and bust of the mid-2000s, according to a report by the Greater Milwaukee Association of Realtors.

Harbor Front Condominium in the Third Ward

With no supply being added to the market, 352 condos sold last year, compared to 330 in 2016.

Average sales prices were down 0.7 percent from $340,161 in 2016 to $337,795 in 2017 in the Historic Third Ward, Walker’s Point and downtown Milwaukee.

“The gains in unit sales are a continuing sign that buyers are still eager and looking to experience Milwaukee’s urban lifestyle,” said GMAR president Mike Ruzicka.

The length of time units were on the market was down 27 percent in 2017 from 70 days to 51 days. The decrease comes after falling 25 percent from 2015 to 2016, 93 days to 70 days.

Through May 11, 2018, prices in the downtown market have increased 3 percent, while sales were flatcompared to the same portion of 2017, according to GMAR.

With no supply being added to the downtown condo market, the law of supply and demand would dictate price increases in the future, Ruzicka said.

Slowly, developers are looking at condominium developments.

Wangard Partners revised his plans at North Water and East Brady streets along the Milwaukee River on the city’s East Side, just north of downtown, to make the project a four-story luxury condominium development.

The previous plans for the project called for a four-story apartment building with 4,500 square feet of first floor retail space.

Milwaukee architect and developer Peter Renner is planning to build a 10-unit condominium development on vacant land at 610-628 E. Summerfest Place in the Third Ward.

Chris Corley, who specializes in selling luxury condominiums, said properties that have sat on the market for a year or two are finally selling.

Corley has sold six properties this year, priced under $200,000, site unseen.

“I never thought in my lifetime I would see that,” he said. “People are too afraid to lose out. Properties priced under $400,000 are flying off the shelf, which is great. Literally, almost everything is selling as long as it is priced accordingly.”

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