Now that the baton is in grasp of the final quarter of our annual relay, it's a good time to look back and reflect. This year has been spectacular for residential real estate. Robust gains in sales and prices were felt in many markets. More homes sold in less time for closer to asking price. While consumers have felt empowered by low prices and interest rates, sellers are starting to regain their footing. Seller confidence is crucial to refilled inventory bins – which are still relatively sparse.
New Listings in the Milwaukee region increased 5.6 percent to 1,824. Pending Sales were down 23.1 percent to 913. Inventory levels shrank 4.4 percent to 7,886 units.
Prices got a lift. The Median Sales Price increased 6.1 percent to $174,000. Days on Market was down 17.7 percent to 82 days. Absorption rates improved as Months Supply of Inventory was down 11.1 percent to 5.9 months.
The economy continues to snail forward. The government shutdown had a modest impact on borrowing – mostly centered on USDA and VA borrowers. Consumer confidence is central to ongoing recovery, and confidence was hindered by the shutdown. Consumer spending accounts for roughly 70 percent of U.S. economic activity and impacts the likelihood for big-ticket purchases like homes and cars. Future shutdowns are unwelcome.
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