Despite the seasonality of residential real estate in the Chicago area, a new report from Illinois REALTORS® reveals data that points to a buzzing market in Illinois during the month of October. Buyers remained very active last month according to the report. Statewide, homes sold in an average time of 28 days, which is considerably lower than the 43 days during October of 2020. This suggests that not only does competition between buyers remain stiff, but there’s more of an emphasis to jump on deals sooner than later and close quickly.
The statewide median sale price for single family homes and condos is also up 5.4% this October compared to the same period a year prior. However, overall sales are down by 11% from 17,889 in October of 2020 to 15,920 home sales this past October. Inventory is also down compared to last year. In October, there were 29,456 homes for sale, which is a significant drop — or nearly 29% decrease — compared to the 41,320 homes for sale across the state during the same period last year.
However, while a number of indicators may suggest a stronger residential market statewide, prices in the Chicago area may be leveling off. For the Chicago metro area as a whole, the median home sale price this past October was $289,745, which represents a 5.7% increase from last October’s $274,000 median sale price. But within Chicago city limits, the story changes a bit. The median sale price last month in Chicago proper was $312,000, slightly lower than the $315,000 from the same period last year.
Home sales — specifically single family properties and condos — were also down in Chicago this October. There were 11,149 closings for these properties within Chicago proper last month while the city had 12,613 closings in the same period in 2020. And with the holiday season quickly approaching, there is a likelihood that sales may slow down until the last weeks of winter and the beginning of spring.
“Real estate has always had an element of seasonality, and that’s what the data reflects from October: seasonality coming back into play after so much pent-up demand over the past year and a half,” Antje Gehrken, president of the Chicago Association of REALTORS® and president and designated managing broker of A.R.E. Partners said in the release. “The market remains relatively strong and healthy, even compared to before the pandemic, despite concerns about continued inventory strain.”
There are other factors at play that could affect the market going into the new year as well, such as the high inflation rate and rising mortgage interest rates. However, mortgage interest rates continue to hover near record lows and are expected to remain as such through the end of the year.