A realtors group cites outdated land use rules for raising building costs for new housing in Door and Kewaunee counties and statewide. The Wisconsin Realtors Association released a study showing that restrictive zoning rules on minimum lot sizes, requiring use of high-end building materials and long approval processes can add 24-percent to the cost of a single family home. For multi-family housing such rules can boost construction costs by 30-percent. Jim Schuessler, Executive Director of the Door County Economic Development Corporation, says reforms are also needed in Wisconsin's tax-increment financing system and in rules covering some workforce housing developments.
The Wisconsin Realtors Association study also showed rents are rising faster than incomes. Between 2007 and 2017, the study found the median rent in Wisconsin had increased nearly 22-percent while median wages grew by just over 17-percent.