Home sales and prices increased in Iowa again last month. Dale Gross of Atlantic is president of the Iowa Association of Realtors (IAR).

“We’ve had a tremendous 13 months in a row where everything continues to go a little bit up or a lot up,” Gross says. Home sales have increased in Iowa for 13 consecutive months.

A new report from the IAR shows 3,367 homes were sold last month, compared to 3,274 homes sold in July 2011. The median sale price of a home in Iowa last month was $134,900, up from $130,000 in July 2011. Gross says the inventory of homes available for purchase has dropped 13% over the past year.

“We’re down from nearly 25,000 houses to 21,600 houses available for buyers to look at,” Gross said. “That, along with the low interest rates – which we’re seeing the 30 year (interest rate) at just under 4% and the 15 year under 3% – means there are still people out there buying or involved in the home buying process.”

Gross said he’s concerned about the impact the drought will have on home sales in rural Iowa communities. “And yet, the statistics don’t show that anybody is backing away here in the summer months,” Gross said. “I guess maybe the farmers have the right amount of crop insurance or something like that and everybody is talking like, ‘well, we’ll get by.'”

The new IAR report shows pending home sales were up 4.2% in July compared to the previous year. The average number of days on the market in July was 96 days, down from 106 days in July 2011.