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Uptown Sees Biggest Uptick in Housing Prices Over Decade

by Chicago Agent

Despite the housing market’s decline, housing prices in Andersonville and Uptown have reportedly seen a steady climb upwards in the past decade.

According to Fiserv, Inc., in the 60640 zip code, which includes the two Northside neighborhoods, the average single family home price rose 39.3 percent from the end of 2000 to the end of 2010. This is the largest 10-year gain in all of the 252 zip codes that are tracked by Fiserv, a financial services firm that calculates the widely followed Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices.

Despite suffering double-digit drops during the bust years, prices in neighborhoods such as Lincoln Square, Ravenswood, Irving Park and Garfield Park also saw an increase, according to Crain’s Chicago Real Estate Daily. Buyers have reportedly been looking for less expensive alternatives to neighborhoods like Lincoln Park and Bucktown, and this influx has driven up prices in places like Uptown and Andersonville.

“So many more families are wanting to stay in the city, and prices in those areas have gotten astronomically high,” says Thaddeus Wong, co-founder of local residential brokerage @properties, in a statement.

Uptown, Andersonville and Lincoln Park are a lot less affordable now that they were at the beginning of 2000. The 60640 zip code is the 14th-highest ranked median home price among Chicago-area zip codes, at $540,000. The highest was Glencoe’s 60022 at $952,000.

“People that were priced out of neighborhoods (like Bucktown and Wicker Park) were seeing Uptown as a sort of fringe — probably a similar dynamic was going on in Garfield Park,” says Philip Ashton, an assistant professor of urban planning and policy at the University of Illinois at Chicago, in statement. “In a lot of cases, demand exceeded supply in a lot of targeted neighborhoods.”

With the influx of young professionals, more retailers were attracted to the area, further boosting the appeal of the neighborhoods.

“With all the more commercial (development), it makes the neighborhood more desirable to live in,” says Jeanne Carava, a broker with Prudential Rubloff Properties who’s had listings near Andersonville for 15 years, in a press release. “When the first Starbucks went in (in Andersonville), there was just a lot more confidence.”

Northern suburb Downers Grove was the only zip code outside the city that made the top 10 local price gainers of the decade, with a 32.5% increase.

The broader housing picture still remains gloomy with a high foreclosure rate, a weak job market, a tight lending market and persistent pessimism among buyers.

The Standard’s & Poor’s/Case Shiller index of Chicago-area single-family home prices fell 2.4 percent from February to March and was down 7.6 percent from the year-earlier level, hitting its lowest point in 10 years.

“We still got a long way to go for some areas in the city,” says Ashton, in a statement.

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