Chicago, State and Nation Home Sales Rise

September 21, 2011

Metro Chicago real estate sales saw a double-digit, year-over-year improvement last month, as did the Chicago area, the state of Illinois and the country in general.

According to the Illinois Association of REALTORS® latest report, the nine-county Chicago metropolitan area sold 7,187 homes in August, which represents a 27.6 percent increase from the number of homes sold in August 2010.

In the city of Chicago, existing home sales were up 20.3 percent in August 2011 compared to the same month last year. And, in Illinois the increase in August homes sold was 25.9 compared to August 2010.

guy on computer that says Home Search, shows a Home, then SOLD“Housing sales in Illinois and the nine-county Chicago region increased in August and positive year-to-year changes are forecast in both the Chicago PMSA and Illinois for the next three months of September, October and November,” said Dr. Geoffrey J.D. Hewings, director of the Regional Economics Applications Laboratory (REAL) of the University of Illinois.

“However, the job market confirmed that the nation’s economic recovery is slowing down; the Illinois unemployment rate has increased four months in a row after 15 consecutive months of declines.”

It’s good thing, then, that home prices are still bottoming out.

*Chicago metro area: The median price in August 2011 was $176,500, down 10.4 percent compared to the $197,000 in August 2010.

*City of Chicago: The median price in August was $192,500, a 3.8 percent decrease from the $200,000 posted last August.

*Illinois: The statewide median price was $149,000 last month, a 5.4 percent decline from the $157,500 recorded a year ago August.

“A strong buyer’s market continues in the Illinois housing market with record low mortgage interest rates and lower home prices although job worries and overall economic uncertainty are holding many back,” said REALTOR® Sheryl Grider Whitehurst, ABR, CRB, GRI, e-PRO, president of the Illinois Association of REALTORS®.

“In some local markets prices are firming as homes are selling due to high affordability conditions and pent-up demand; 8.5 percent more homes sold statewide in August compared to the previous month of July.”

Nationwide, the story is pretty much the same. U.S. existing-home sales in August rose to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.03 million; an 18.6 percent increase from the 4.24 million unit level in August 2010.

The national median home price last month was $168,300, a 5.1 percent decline from the median price during the same month last year.

No matter where you live, the conditions to buy are there. The economy just needs the buyers.

“All year,” said National Association of REALTORS President Ron Phipps, “the relationship between home prices, mortgage interest rates and family income has been hovering at historic highs, meaning the best housing affordability conditions in a generation.”

The Federal Reserve made a move on Wednesday to stimulate the economy and make home buying opportunities even more possible. Please check back to Chicagoland Real Estate Forum for that story.

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