PRICES RISE: Home Inventory Declines

Spring is the unofficial kickoff of the construction season and skilled workers may soon find themselves working overtime.

A report released Tuesday by the S&P/Case-Shiller Index shows that home prices increased an average of 8.1% nationwide from January 2012 to January 2013.

Iowa saw even greater gains.

From February 2012 to February 2013, home prices jumped 11%.

“It shows we are on the way back to recovery,” said Larry Pickering, President of the Iowa Association of Realtors.

Although higher prices mean more money for sellers, one would think higher prices would deter buyers.

According to Pickering, demand is booming partially because there are fewer homes for sale than at this time last year.

“We’re running into situations where sellers are receiving multiple offers,” Pickering told Channel 13 News.

So where is the good news for buyers?

“We have a lot of people still seeing low interest rates and are optimistic about the economy and want to get into a home,” Pickering said.

With fewer used homes on the market, things are also looking up for developers.

“We are building more homes this year. We’ll probably build 20% more homes this year than we did last year,” Rick Tollakson, President and CEO of Hubbell Realty Company.

Tollakson says his company is adding developments throughout the metro, like Glynn Village in Waukee.

“90 percent of our lots are already sold,” said Tollakson.

More houses being built means more skilled jobs for metro workers and a healthier economy overall.

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