Illinois median home prices increase 6.1 percent in August; Home sales down amid tight inventory

FOR RELEASE: September 22, 2014

For Further Information Contact: Stephanie Sievers, 217-529-2600

Illinois median home prices increase 6.1 percent in August;
Home sales down amid tight inventory

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — Illinois median home prices continued to see robust annual gains in August while tighter housing inventory and credit availability slowed sales in the final month of the summer selling season, according to the Illinois Association of REALTORS®.

Statewide home sales (including single-family homes and condominiums) in August 2014 totaled 14,679 homes sold, down 10.4 percent from 16,384 in August 2013.

The statewide median price in August was $175,000, up 6.1 percent from August 2013 when the median price was $165,000. The median is a typical market price where half the homes sold for more and half sold for less.

“The numbers clearly show intense interest on the part of consumers for getting into new homes,” said Jim Kinney, ABR, CRB, CRS, GRI, president of the Illinois Association of REALTORS® and vice president of luxury sales for Baird & Warner in Chicago. “Although the ability to get credit and the availability of homes are tempering overall sales, the summer selling season has been strong and provides momentum into the slower, cold-weather months.”

The monthly average commitment rate for a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage for the North Central region was 4.11 percent in August 2014, the same as 4.11 percent in July, according to the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. In August 2013 it averaged 4.44 percent.

In the nine-county Chicago Primary Metropolitan Statistical Area (PMSA), home sales (single-family and condominiums) in August 2014 totaled 10,370 homes sold, down 13.3 percent from August 2013 sales of 11,963 homes.

The median price in August 2014 was $215,000 in the Chicago PMSA, up 9.1 percent from $197,000 in August 2013.

“Modest increases in median prices are anticipated to continue. Analysis reveals the decrease (on an annual basis) in sales can be attributed to the decline in foreclosure sales; regular sales are almost at last year's level,” said Geoffrey J.D. Hewings, Director of the Regional Economics Applications Laboratory of the University of Illinois.  “A re-estimate of the foreclosure inventory suggests it will be another 12-15 months before this inventory returns to pre-recession levels.”

Thirty-six (36) of 102 counties in Illinois showed annual home sales increases in August 2014. Sixty-one (61) counties showed year-over-year median price increases including Macon, up 25.2 percent to $103,000; Sangamon, up 16.0 percent to $145,000; Madison, up 14.7 percent to $129,000; Kane, up 13.7 percent to $199,000; and Peoria, up 11.9 percent to $125,000.

The city of Chicago saw a 15.3 percent year-over-year decrease in home sales in August 2014 with 2,414 sales, down from 2,850 in August 2013. The median price rose to $270,000 versus $245,000 in August 2013, an annual increase of 10.2 percent.

“August rounded out the typically hot summer market with a trend we’ve seen all year. Chicago buyers have fewer homes to choose from yet are finding their desired house in a shorter amount of time,” said Matt Farrell, president of the Chicago Association of REALTORS® and managing partner of Urban Real Estate. “Median home prices are flourishing as a result of these focused buyers presenting their best offer despite the low inventory.”

Sales and price information is generated by Multiple Listing Service closed sales reported by 30 participating Illinois REALTOR® local boards and associations including Midwest Real Estate Data LLC data as of Sept. 7, 2014 for the period August 1 through August 31, 2014. The Chicago PMSA, as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau, includes the counties of Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry and Will.

The Illinois Association of REALTORS® is a voluntary trade association whose 41,000 members are engaged in all facets of the real estate industry. In addition to serving the professional needs of its members, the Illinois Association of REALTORS® works to protect the rights of private property owners in the state by recommending and promoting legislation to safeguard and advance the interest of real property ownership.

Find Illinois housing stats, data and the University of Illinois REAL forecast at www.illinoisrealtor.org/marketstats.

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MEDIA ONLY: Economist Dr. Geoffrey J.D. Hewings will be available for media interviews between 9 a.m. and noon CST on Sept. 22.