Home sales continue to rise across Iowa. Don Marple is president of the Iowa Association of Realtors, which has released a new report on home sales in January.
“We had a 14.7 percent increase compared to January of last year and we’re showing that increase around the state. Twenty-eight of our 44 local Realtor boards showed an increase in regard to their sales activity,” Marple said. A total of 1,898 homes were sold in Iowa last month, compared to 1,655 homes sold in January 2012.
Home sales in Iowa have increased in 18 of the last 19 months. Marple credits the slowly improving economy and low interest rates.
“Interest rates are still anywhere from 3.25 to 3.75 percent,” Marple said. “We look for that to steady in that range probably through the end of this year.”
The median sale price for a home sold in Iowa rose last month to $116,050. That’s up from $108,199 in January 2012. Marple said he’s hearing from sellers that they’re receiving multiple offers, which is leading to quicker home sales.
“The downside is we don’t have enough homes on the market,” Marple said. “We’ve got plenty of buyers who want to get into the market and get their first home or second home…but we don’t have enough people selling at this time. I think it’s because they don’t know how good the market is for them to get their home on the market. They’re going to get a good dollar value and they’re going to be able to move up themselves and find a better home they can get into.”
The average home sold in Iowa last month was on the market 102 days, down from 114 days last year. The statewide inventory of homes on the market has dropped 19-percent over the year, according to Marple.