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A Buyer’s Ideal Market: Affordability in Chicagoland Housing

by Chicago Agent

First quarter Illinois housing sales showcased the affordability in the current market, with nearly 70 percent of Illinois homes sold with price tags of under $200,000, and a median of $131,175, according to Illinois Association of Realtors (IAR).

The median home price, which is down 8.9 percent from last year’s first quarter median, accounts for the sale of 18,940 homes, an 11.2 percent decrease from the first quarter of 2010.

“Affordability conditions reached a peak in the first quarter prompted by the low interest rates, and these ideal conditions should continue for the spring selling season with lower pricing making housing more affordable for buyers who are eager to purchase property,” said ABR, CRB, GRI, president of the Illinois Association of Realtors and development and operations coordinator for Traders Realty in Peoria, Sheryl Grider Whitehurst in a press release from IAR.

“As companies do more hiring and the economy grows stronger so will the housing market and that will benefit the many industries and jobs inter-connected to housing, as a recent study by Chicago-based RCF Economic and Financial Consulting shows. The sale of just one home in Illinois produces $28,581 in expenditures made by buyers and sellers in the transaction with a total annual impact of $7.9 billion in direct and indirect expenditures across the Illinois economy,” added Whitehurst.

Specifically, in the Chicagoland Primary Metropolitan Statistical Area total home sales were down 9.9 percent compared to last year’s first quarter with 12,937 homes sold in 2011, and a median price reduction of 11.7 percent compared to 2010, with 2011 finding a median of $155,000, according to IAR.

IAR found that the city of Chicago experienced a 16.5 percent drop in total home sales in comparison to the first quarter of 2010, as well as a first quarter decrease of approximately 8.2 percent in the median price, with a current figure of $180,000.

“We are seeing a market in its infancy of recovery as median prices are narrowing, year over year. We see a healthy comparison of units sold in the first quarter 2011 when 3,540 units sold versus the same period in 2009 when 2,995 units sold in the city of Chicago,” said Mabel Guzman, president of the Chicago Association of Realtors and a Realtor with Envision Real Estate LLC, Chicago. “Sellers should consider a competitive price will keep their home on the market, a compelling price will get it sold.”

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