After reading a few facts about Milwaukee, many want to move there. It's the biggest city in Wisconsin for a reason, isn't it?
Nature lovers can find more than 150 state and county parks in Milwaukee. There are also 1,400 acres of beaches and over 100 golf courses across the city.
Additionally, it's a metropolitan area with multiple business establishments, many job opportunities, and a high quality of life.
Such wonders make Milwaukee an attractive city for homebuyers and real estate investors. However, it's crucial to learn about the local housing market before buying a property in this city.
In this regard, there are a few essential questions to consider: What did the latest trends show? What do the experts think about the current real estate statistics? What are the predictions for the coming months?
Read on to find the answers to those questions and make an informed decision for your next investment!
Milwaukee Housing Market Trends
According to Redfin's latest reports, the Milwaukee housing market has remained competitive during this year's first quarter, but what supports that claim?
April 2023 figures showed that home prices in Milwaukee increased by almost 7% compared to the same period last year. In addition, the median days on the market also fell, suggesting that properties are selling faster.
Here's more information on each key indicator to better understand the latest housing market trends in Milwaukee.
Milwaukee Home Prices
As mentioned, Redfin's reports showed that home prices in the Milwaukee area rose by 6.9%, with the median listing home price reaching $187,000 in April of this year.
This rise of almost 7% year over year comes after a sharp fall in February 2023, which shows that the market is moving in a positive direction.
According to Realtor.com, a total of 1,277 homes are currently listed for sale in Milwaukee, including 211 added in the last seven days.
Redfin's report also showed that 52.9% of homes in Milwaukee sold above list price, which accounts for a 2.0% increase year over year.
Additionally, the same report revealed that only 15.1% of residential properties sold below the listing price in April 2023. Compared to last year's figures, that's a 3.7% year-over-year drop.
The number of Milwaukee houses sold in April 2023 also fell, down to 439 units. That's a drop of 34.5% year over year. In April of last year, 670 residential properties were listed and purchased.
Median Days on the Market
According to Redfin's latest report, the median days on the market dropped four days year over year.
As of April 2022, homes spent 42 days on the market before going under contract. However, the number fell to 38 this year.
Wisconsin was ranked 41st for the highest foreclosure rate by SoFi, as the state had just 371 foreclosures out of 2,718,369 homes.
Based on these figures, Wisconsin's rate is only one foreclosure filing for every 7,327 households. Marathon, Douglas, Ashland, Kenosha, and Langlade were the counties with the highest number of foreclosures per residential unit.
What Factors Affect the Milwaukee Real Estate Market?
Fluctuations happen for a reason. Overall, a city's real estate market is influenced by different factors, including the health of the economy, changes in demographics, people's income, and government policies. Let's learn more about each one.
The Local Economy
The local economy always impacts a city's real estate market. If they have a solid income or start earning more money, residents will be more interested in buying a property.
In Milwaukee, the economy has always been diverse, as the city is home to many businesses and employers in different industries, from education to manufacturing.
The Milwaukee metropolitan area is ranked 40th by the highest population. Additionally, the Globalization and World Cities Research Network has rated Milwaukee as a "Gamma minus" city, meaning that it links smaller regions into the global economy.
This city has also experienced steady growth in terms of employment, which has increased by 13.5% in the last decade, according to the Milwaukee Economic Development Corporation.
Mortgage Interest Rates
If mortgage interest rates are high, the costs associated with obtaining a loan and buying a residential property also increase. However, when they're low, homes become more affordable, and demand goes up.
According to the Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Market Survey (PMMS), the average mortgage rate fell from 6.60% to 6.39% (30-year fixed-rate loan) between mid-March and April of this year.
How the population is composed also influences the housing market. Demographic changes tell us how each group behaves in terms of real estate purchases and migration or how much money they earn. These significant factors directly affect the prices and demand for homes.
Is the Housing Market Expected to Crash Soon?
There's another question worth answering before buying a home in Milwaukee: Is the housing market expected to crash soon?
Since many think a recession is coming, homebuyers and real estate investors are concerned about their financial situations and avoid making decisions that could put their money at risk.
However, experts predict that there will only be a slowdown in the Milwaukee housing market, explaining that it's unlikely to crash soon. These signs support such claims:
- High Housing Demand: Although the number of homes sold in Milwaukee dropped slightly in April, it's still high compared to the figures reported in recent months. Also, many people still want to move to this city.
- Low Housing Supply: Although housing inventory in Milwaukee changed slightly compared to last year's figures, it's still low. Market crashes usually occur when the housing supply is excessively higher than the demand.
- Fewer Foreclosures: As mentioned, Wisconsin has one of the country's lowest foreclosure rates. Experts believe this occurs because residents are more confident in their financial situations.
- Fewer Newly Built Homes: Many people find the process of getting approved to buy land and build new properties to be tedious and time-consuming. Therefore, they don't want to invest in building new houses, which means that inventory remains low.
- Stricter Lending Criteria: Since loan requirements are now stricter, individuals must have an excellent credit score to get their applications approved. As a result, there is still no artificial purchasing power increasing demand and prices to worrying levels.
Milwaukee Housing Market Statistics
Besides knowing the latest trends, it's also important to take a look at the following statistics to determine if buying a home in Milwaukee is a good idea:
- According to the latest report found on Realtor.com, the median listing price in Milwaukee reached $174,900 in April of this year.
- Realtor.com also showed that the median listing home price was $133 per square foot.
- The median sold price for a home in the Milwaukee housing market was $189,500, Realtor.com said.
- Houses in this city sold for approximately the asking price, on average, in April of this year, with a sale-to-list price ratio of 100.41%, according to Realtor.com.
- Milwaukee's unemployment rate has fallen from 9.5% to 3.5% between 2010 and 2022.
- Redfin says that about 25% of homebuyers expected to move out of Milwaukee between February and April of this year.
- Contrastingly, 75% of people expected to move within the Milwaukee metropolitan area in the same period, Redfin showed.
- According to Redfin's reports, 0.51% of homebuyers across the United States searched to move into Milwaukee.
- Forbes says the cost of living in Milwaukee is 3% below the national average.
- The median sale price for single-family homes in Milwaukee rose 6.7% year over year, reaching $192,000 in April of this year.
Expert Housing Market Predictions
Experts can also help you know if Milwaukee is a good place to invest in a real estate property or buy a house to live in. This is what they say about what may happen to the city's housing market in the near future:
Higher Mortgage Interest Rate
Analysts believe the Fed will continue to raise interest rates to combat inflation and deal with a potential recession.
Many predict that mortgage interest rates will rise to 8.0% or higher for both 30-year and 15-year fixed-rate loans, even though they have already reached record highs.
Lower Home Sales
Most experts also predict home sales will fall because of higher interest rates. If properties are more expensive, the number could drop by 10% or more.
Also, homes are expected to spend more time on the market before going under contract. Analysts believe the median days on the market could be 10 days higher.
Lower Home Supply and Housing Prices
If homeowners aren't confident in the housing market, they won't sell their properties, and inventory will remain low.
In addition, homes will look less affordable, which also means home prices will fall. Many experts believe that the drop may be as high as 5%.
Milwaukee Housing Market Predictions
While experts' predictions are lukewarm, many analysts believe the Milwaukee housing market represents a positive outlook.
A report recently released by the Greater Milwaukee Association of REALTORS showed that the local real estate market had slowed down. However, it revealed buyers are still actively looking for properties in this city.
In addition, according to Zillow's forecast, the growth rate in the Milwaukee-Waukesha-West Allis metro will be consistent at 0.5%, which means the housing market could experience even more positive movements.
As Milwaukee's real estate market remains competitive, many also expect home prices to continue to rise in response to increasing demand.
Milwaukee is a great destination for people from all over the world. Besides offering great job opportunities, this city is beautiful. You can visit hundreds of parks if you want to reconnect with nature or just walk in the sun.
However, it's important to consider the latest housing market trends and experts' predictions to know if buying a property in this city can really benefit your investment strategy.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Milwaukee a Seller's Market?
Yes, it is! With more people looking to buy property in the Milwaukee area than homes available in inventory, the city is a seller's market. As a result, homebuyers can lead negotiations.
Is Buying a Property in Milwaukee a Good Idea?
While many are rushing to buy properties in Milwaukee due to the competitiveness of the housing market, there are several things you should consider before purchasing a home there. Your budget and preferences play a key role in this decision.
If you have questions or need help to make smarter investment choices, remember that you can contact an experienced real estate agent.