Greater Milwaukee housing market is hot; 'Nothing like I've ever experienced'

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MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Despite the pandemic hitting some businesses hard, it hasn't stopped the growth in home sales. In fact, October home sales are up 26 percent in the Milwaukee market. 

It's definitely a seller's market. They say usually once September hits, things start to slow down. That's hasn't been the case so far this year. In fact, they're seeing quite the opposite. 

"It was nothing live I've ever experienced," said Rose Hennessey-Garza, first-time homebuyer. 

Rose Hennessey-Garza and her husband bought their first home in June in the middle of a pandemic. 

"We were just looking for the space," Hennessey-Garza said. "We have a dog, so a yard for the dog. For the first time ever I can park my car in a garage which is amazing especially with winter coming."

"We're seeing a lot of millennials getting into the housing market either purchasing condos or single-family houses," said Mike Ruzicka, president of the Greater Milwaukee Association of Realtors (GMAR). "Baby boomers are aging and moving. The problem is that we don't have enough of those houses open for people to move into." 

Mike Ruzicka with the Greater Milwaukee Association of Realtors (GMAR), says it's not uncommon for a home to go on the market and have several offers on the first day. He says this proves the pandemic hasn't slowed the market down. 

"For county area, this year in October we sold 2,300 houses. Last year at the same time a little, over 1,800 so that’s a 26 percent increase which is pretty substantial," said Ruzicka.

Right now, Ruzicka says there's only about a month-and-a-half worth of supply -- typically about six months. This means buyers have to act quickly. That then puts pressure on the buyer to act quickly and with a larger amount. 

"We learned that we have to actually look for homes that were cheaper because in order to get those you’re going to have to ask over price," said Hennessey-Garza. 

Ruzicka says they're not sure what will happen in the next year, so he recommends buyers to act within the next six months. 

"Buying a house is super exciting, it’s also sort of stressful, but a really good stress. When you’re ready for it, I would say take the leap, find a good realtor," said Ruzicka. 

GMAR recommends buyers have everything ready to go so that when you find the right home you can act quickly and have a better chance at being considered. 

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