ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- The local real estate market is inching closer to a recovery. In fact, local realtors sold more homes last month than any other month since the recession began.
After spending the last 15 years in Iowa, Mike Panoske is thrilled to return to the Stateline, near friends and family.
"Definitely was a dream or desire to come back to the homestead. So, good that we can do it now with young children and everything for grandparents, nieces, nephews, cousins,” said Panoske.
The Panoskes just bought a home in South Beloit. Adding to the Rockford area realtors' belief the housing market is improving.
“Most all numbers are positive. So, I mean, that's really exciting. You know, we've said we're in the recovery mode, and we finally agree that yeah, I guess we're recovering. And certainly the October numbers are really showing in a big way that that's happening," said Steve Bois, CEO of Rockford Area Realtors.
More people bought homes in October than any other month since June 2009, with 416 houses sold. The Panoskes looked at more than 40 houses before finding their dream home.
"Again, just can't get settled soon enough. But it'll take time,” said the Panoskes.
They moved back to town for a job opportunity. Another sign, Rockford realtors say, the area is improving.
The Rockford area still has a high foreclosure rate. Even still, there are fewer homes on the market than more than five years ago. About 2,400 homes are for sale. Realtors say it remains to be a buyer’s market especially with interest rates being so low.
The positive October numbers actually marked the fourth straight month of year over year sales increases in the Rockford area. The Rockford Area Realtors say the growing aerospace cluster and improving schools will continue to boost the housing market into the future.