WISCONSIN (WKOW)-- Spring is on it's way. For realtors it's their busiest time of the year.
After 20 consecutive months with home sales on the rise, an industry has a breath of new life.
"People are still looking for a deal and they're still out there, but right now there's competition for those deals," Madison realtor Michela Terrazino says.
The competition has lead to a 6% increase in home prices compared to last year, according to the Wisconsin Realtors Association. Realtors are hoping it will inspire sellers to put their homes up for sale. They say with historically low interest rates the market is appealing to both buyers and sellers.
"You can see this clear across the board, but when you're looking at the houses that are selling they're in the median range which in Dane County is about $197,000," Terrazino says.
Nationwide home sales actually went down in February according to the U.S. Commerce Department, but here in the Midwest we saw a 13.7% increase. In Wisconsin it was a 12% increase with an average home sitting at a $122,000.
"The rental vacancy has dropped in Madison and rental prices have gone up and I think the buyers are looking at getting a 30-year fixed rate at 4% or lower right now," Keller-Williams Realtor Ryan Koch explains. "It's making sense to them. They're saying hey, I should invest my money, look at other options rather than renting."
It's a trend realtors are happy to see, as a solid February and promising March carry them into the busy months of April through September.
"I think we're moving in the right direction. It's an exciting time here in Dane County to see the market increase," Koch says.
Madison wasn't the only successful region this Winter. The Wisconsin Realtors Association says sales in the central region of the state saw an increase twice as high as we did.
WISCONSIN (WKOW)-- A solid February for Wisconsin home sales is an encouraging sign for realtors as they move into their busy season. The season typically runs from April until September.
Wisconsin home sales saw a 12% increase in February according to the Wisconsin Realtors Association. This comes after 20 straight months of growth and the best month for home sales since 2008.
Nationwide the numbers decreased from January to February showing a 4.6% slip. However, the entire Midwest continued their growth trend posting a 13.7% increase in sales.
Madison realtors are excited for the upcoming Spring. They think this recent success will motivate sellers to put their homes on the market. They say low interest rates for buyers has created a lot of competition for medium-priced houses.
Competition has lead to a 6% increase in the pricing of homes. The median home price in Wisconsin rose to $122,000 in February.
Tonight on 27 News at 10, we'll hear from Madison area realtors.