Home sales up 6.2 percent in August

Last updated on July 2nd, 2019 at 09:05 am

The Metropolitan Milwaukee housing market continues to improve with home sales in August up 6.2 percent compared to August 2014.

August was the seventh consecutive month of positive sales this year, with 1,933 homes sold compared to 1,821 in August 2014, according to the Greater Milwaukee Association of Relators, which looked at Milwaukee, Waukesha, Washington and Ozaukee counties.

Washington County had the highest increase in sales at 17.2 percent, followed by Milwaukee and Waukesha counties at 5.4 and 5.2 percent, respectively. Ozaukee County remained the same, with 128 housing sales in August 2015 and August 2014.

“Buyers are very active, some homes in move in condition are receiving multiple offers, inventory is tight, and there is some upward price pressure,” said Mike Ruzicka with GMAR. “These conditions usually encourage buyers to test the waters, but they are currently slow to jump in.”

August was the third month this year where listings decreased, declining 1.3 percent.  Washington County was the exception with its listings increasing more than 23 percent.

Ruzicka was surprised at how strong August sales were, given the lack of inventory, which is at about 4.6 months.

“It’s interesting how the market is adapting to it, we’re not seeing the price increases like we were in boom years,” Ruzicka said.

During the peak housing sales years of 2006 and 2007 inventory was at about 6 months and home sellers were increasing prices. Today, prices are holding study.

Ruzicka believes home sales will continue to increase; however, given the lack of inventory, he isn’t sure sales will surpass 2014. Overall home sales in 2014 were the strongest they had been since 2006.

“If we beat that, it will be pretty striking,” Ruzicka said.

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