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Housing market loosens slightly in Wisconsin

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — New data from the Wisconsin Realtors Association suggest that the state’s tight housing market is loosening.

The data show that the state had nearly 7,300 sales of existing homes last month, an almost 5 percent increase from October 2016, Wisconsin Public Radio reported .

An increase in the housing supply will help lower the cost of houswing in the state, said David Clark, an economist at Marquette University.

“That will probably knock down some of those rather hefty price increases that we’ve been seeing over the last couple of years,” Clark said. “We’ve seen prices going up at two to three times the rate of inflation.”

The median home price in the state rose to $175,000 last month, a more than 6 percent increase from October 2016.

But one month of improvement won’t guarantee that the market will continue to get better, he said.

Despite the additions to the housing supply, the Wisconsin housing market will probably favor sellers for some time, particularly in urban areas, Clark said.

“If you look at overall inventory levels, they’re at about 5.1 months,” he said. “But when you look at metropolitan counties, they’re at 3.9 months. Even if new listings continue to improve, it’ll take a while for this market to adjust to the point that it’s a buyer’s market as opposed to a seller’s market.”

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