As potentially the brightest sun in the current economic recovery, housing activity has followed the mercury higher this summer. Interest rates and new construction activity have been in the spotlight lately, fueled by concerns over tapering Federal Reserve activity and ongoing inventory constraints. Watch for indications that more homes are selling in less time and at higher price points. Also watch for sellers returning to an inviting marketplace, which will help replenish neighborhoods with new listings.
New Listings in the Milwaukee region increased 8.9 percent to 2,459. Pending Sales were down 17.5 percent to 1,227. Inventory levels shrank 10.3 percent to 8,576 units.
Prices followed the mercury higher. The Median Sales Price increased 8.1 percent to $190,000. Days on Market was down 19.8 percent to 83 days. Absorption rates improved as Months Supply of Inventory was down 18.0 percent to 6.7 months.
The economy – which generates the jobs that fuel housing demand – continued to improve at a moderate pace during the second quarter of 2013. Budget sequesters and sluggish export growth have taken a back seat to housing recovery and stronger consumer spending. Interest rates could flirt with 4.0 or 4.25 percent again but the days of 3.3 percent interest are likely behind us.
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