The stagnant housing market, coupled with a swell of foreclosures seen in recent years, may be over in Winona County, with sale prices up, plenty of activity in the housing market, and foreclosures declining rapidly.
Winona County Recorder Bob Bambenek gave a mid-year update to the County Board last month, reporting a steep decline in foreclosures compared to midyear 2012. As of the end of July, only 29 Winona County homes entered foreclosure, down by half when compared to the 58 foreclosures counted at the end of July 2012. "It's a pretty significant improvement," explained Bambenek.
June produced plenty of residential sales, with 65 percent of those recorded sold at prices over market value. Several of the highest residential property sales were also recorded in June, with a Dresbach home that sold for $503,000, a Pleasant Valley home that sold for $405,000 and an apartment building in the city of Winona that closed at $375,000.
Agricultural land did not sell for record-breaking per-acre prices. This is good news for some rural residents feeling the pinch that higher land values bring — higher property taxes. Bambenek said that some land sales were coming in at about $6,100 per acre, with 95 tillable acres east of Lewiston selling for about $7,500 per acre.
Property recordings as a whole were up about nine percent, Bambenek reported.