A senior state economist says housing sales in Cheyenne and especially in Casper are down compared to last year for the first six months of 2016.

But Jim Robinson says despite the slow sales, home prices are up in both communities.

In June [the last month for which numbers are available] in Cheyenne 112 homes were sold, compared to 125 in June of 2015. Robinson says home sales for the first six months of 2016 in Cheyenne were down by 8.3 percent compared to the same time one year earlier.

But despite the slow market the average price of a home sold in Cheyenne in June was $225,000, compared to an average price of $207,450 in May of 2016 and $217,000 in June of 2015.

In Casper home sales actually were up slightly in June 2016 compared to the year before, from 107 to 116. But for the first six months of the year home sales in Casper were down by 16.9 percent compared to the same period in 2015.

But despite the slow sales the average price of a new home in Casper in June was $217,400, an increase of almost $25,000 form the June 2015 average of $193,000.

Robinson says the slow sales in both communities over the first six months of 2016 is probably being caused mostly by inventories of homes combined with a poor economy.

While Cheyenne's economy isn't in great shape, Robinson says Casper's is quite a bit worse, and the bigger decline in home sales for Casper over the first six months probably reflects that fact.