UPDATE: Silver lining to Wisconsin housing market

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UPDATED: Monday, June 23, 2014 --- 9:25pm

Roads weren't the only things that took a beating during the brutal winter here in Wisconsin. The housing market took a hard hit too.

For the fifth month in a row home sales dipped in the state. In May, home sales were down nearly 7 percent, compared to May of last year.

It's disappointing, but there's seems to be a light at the end of tunnel.

Richard and Mary Ellen Hamilton figured selling their Madison home might be hard. But, the process has actually gone quite well. Their property listing went up June 4. By June 8 they had four bids and three were over the asking price.

In just a matter a weeks the couple sold their home for more than they anticipated. In fact, the average selling price is up throughout the entire state by almost 4 percent to $150,000.

"I think we're recovering very quickly” says David Stark, president of Stark Company Realtors. Stark anticipates that despite a slow start the year, the housing market will end 2014 on a high note.

Posted Monday, June 23, 2014 --- 12:50 p.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Home sales in Wisconsin have declined for a fifth month in a row.

The Wisconsin Realtors Association said Monday that home sales were down 6.9 percent in May, compared to the same month a year earlier.

That's not all bad news.

Steve Lane is chairman of the association's Board of Directors. He says the state economy appears to be improving and unemployment is lower, and that can affect home sales.

Homes that are selling are commanding a better price. The median price in May was $150,000, up 3.8 percent from May 2013.

Wisconsin Realtors Association President Michael Theo also says lending reforms may have slowed the market.

Nationally, home sales were down 7 percent in the first four months of 2014 compared to the same time in 2013.

Copyright 2014: Associated Press

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