3 Unquestionably Good Signs for Chicagoland’s Housing Market

by Peter Thomas Ricci

We ventured through the data jungle, and came upon three very good signs for our housing market.


A couple weeks ago, we reported that though home sales have slumped in the Chicagoland area, there were signs that our housing market was improving.

Now, after sifting through a massive collection of data that the good folks at MRED provided us, we can definitively point to three areas that suggest positive things for real estate in Chicagoland:

1. New Listings Commence – Low inventory has been a problem in Chicagoland for some time, but new listings are up by hefty amounts in both the detached and attached markets. By year-over-year measures in October, new listings are up 13.7 percent for detached and 4.8 percent for detached, and year-to-date, 7.9 percent more detached listings have hit the market, and 6.1 percent more detached.

Things are a bit mixed, though, with the total inventory of current homes for sale – though inventory for detached homes is up 4.0 percent, its down 5.0 percent for attached homes.

2. Pending Sales Show Considerable Strength – The number of listings under contract rose by strong yearly amounts, with detached pending sales up 13.4 percent and attached up 6.9 percent. Though year-to-date pending sales are still down 2.5 and 2.6 percent, respectively, there is still two months left to close the gap…and if those increases can be sustained, there’s a good chance that’ll happen.

3. A MUCH More Balanced Market – We saved the best for last. Since the downturn began, Chicagoland’s housing market has been among the most topsy turvy in the nation, with distressed sales making up an outsized portion of the marketplace; as of Oct. 2014, though, we can safely say that things have changed in a dramatic fashion.

Since the start of 2013, traditional sales have gone from 50.6 percent of total sales to 74.3 percent, while REO sales have fallen from 35.4 percent to 19 percent, and short sales have fallen by more than half from 13.6 percent to 6.4 percent.

Check out our graph below for an idea of how much our market has improved:

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