Eau Claire (WQOW) - Spring has a tendency to grow more than flowers. The housing market blooms as well, but as area buyers are searching for homes, realtors say, they're in short supply.
Kingsley Gobourne and his wife closed on their first home last week, but it wasn't their first choice.
“What we found is that there are so few houses that the good ones go very fast,” said Gobourne.
While re-locating from Madison to the Chippewa Valley, the couple started with a large list of things they were looking for, but they had to scale it down.
“We had to just take what was available is what it really came down to. Because you have to move so fast to choose a house, when we found this house, it wasn't the right acreage, it didn't have all the things we wanted but we knew that if we didn't make an offer it was going to be gone,” said Gobourne.
The Gobournes are a part of a supply and demand trend that realtors say has been ramping up the past couple months. “I know just a lot from the realtors that I talk to and even the agents within our own office, it just seems to be a constant trend that we're seeing right now and you know the houses are going fast. Buyers will send us a list of ten MLS numbers of houses they want to look at and then half of them already have accepted offers,” said Tina Theisen, President of Realtors Association of Northwestern Wisconsin.
On Tuesday, in Eau Claire and Chippewa County, around 600 houses were listed for sale, which is less than expected compared to previous years.
“Inventory levels are down more than normal, which is different than what we've experienced in the last few years. And since we have had higher inventory that continues to go down we're basically just going to have to wait and see what happens in the spring and summer,” said Theisen.
State-wide, inventory has been dropping over the past few years as well. The President of the Realtors Association of Northwestern Wisconsin said that this decrease in inventory may be because the state has seen less foreclosure property on the market. Here are some of the numbers from a state-wide inventory that News 18 received from the President of the Realtors Association of Northwestern Wisconsin:
In 2012, the state inventory of properties for sale in February was 52,935 and then in March it was 54,181.
In 2013, the state inventory of properties for sale in February was 46,001 and then in March it was 48,135.
In 2014, the state inventory of properties for sale in February was 43,582 and then in March it was 46,364.
In 2015, the state inventory of properties for sale in February was 43,010.