Chicagoland Housing Market is on the Rebound

At the end of last year, the Illinois housing market saw a decrease in property values but an increase in sales.  According to the Illinois Association of Realtors fourth quarter 2009 report, there was a 35.6 percent increase in Illinois home sales in the last quarter of 2009 compared to the number of sales at the same time in 2008.
Illinois home owners bought 29,822 single-family homes and condominiums in the final quarter of 2009; the state recorded only 21,986 home sales during the same time the previous year in Chicago real estate
In Lake County, the fourth-quarter rebound was even stronger. Sales were up 44.9 percent after 19,947 homes were sold in the last quarter of 2009 in Lake County compared to 13,765 at the same time in 2008.  In the city of Chicago, home sales were up 43.7 percent thanks to 5,639 fourth-quarter sales in 2009 versus 3,925 sales during the same period of 2008.
Experts believe the tax credit incentive, low mortgage interest rates and moderating home prices are responsible for the increase in closings.
The median home sales price at the end of 2009 in Illinois was $155,000, 5.5 percent lower than the $163,950 median price in the fourth quarter of 2008. In Lake County, the median fourth quarter 2009 price decreased 13 percent over 2008 from $215,000 to $187,000. And in the city of Chicago, the fourth quarter median price was down 11.5 percent over 2008, falling from $243,000 to $215,000.  More than 20 percent of Illinois households owed more on the mortgages than the properties were worth in the fourth quarter of 2009. And the job market isn’t helping matters: The official Illinois unemployment rate in December was 11.1 percent; the national rate was 10 percent.  Still, analysts believe the increase in home sales is a strong indication of stabilization in the Illinois housing market. Seventy percent of Illinois counties had an increase in fourth-quarter home sales from 2008 to 2009.
You can read the IAR fourth quarter 2009 report at on Market Stats.