Illinois home prices climb in October; Sales lower amid tighter inventory

FOR RELEASE: Nov. 23, 2015

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

Illinois home prices climb in October; Sales lower amid tighter inventory 

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — The Illinois statewide median price experienced a 6.3 percent annual gain in October. Sales declined slightly as available housing inventory tightened, according to the Illinois Association of REALTORS®.

Statewide home sales (including single-family homes and condominiums) in October 2015 totaled 12,881 homes sold, down 2.8 percent from October 2014 when 13,253 homes sold.

The statewide median price in October 2015 rose to $168,000, a 6.3 percent gain over October 2014’s statewide median price of $158,000. The median is a typical market price where half the homes sold for more and half sold for less.

"A substantial decrease in the number of homes on the market is having an impact on sales," said Mike Drews, GRI, president of the Illinois Association of REALTORS® and a broker-associate with Charles B. Doss & Co. in Aurora. "While there typically is a drop-off in inventory this time of year as potential sellers become immersed in holiday activities, the decline this month was particularly steep. The result is strong median price gains and a decrease in the number of days to sell a home."

The time it took to sell a home in October averaged 68 days statewide, down from 74 days a year ago. Available housing inventory remained tight with 68,302 homes for sale, a 10.4 percent decline from October 2014 when there were 76,205 homes.

The monthly average commitment rate for a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage for the North Central Region was 3.78 percent in October 2015, down from 3.90 percent the previous month, according to the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. In October 2014 it averaged 4.03 percent.

In the nine-county Chicago Primary Metropolitan Statistical Area, home sales (single family and condominiums) in October 2015 totaled 9,155, a decrease of 2.0 percent from the 9,344 sales in October 2014. The median price in October in the Chicago PMSA was $200,000, up 8.1 percent from $185,000 in October 2014.

“The housing market appears to have returned to its longer-run annual pattern,” said Geoffrey J.D. Hewings, director of the Regional Economics Applications Laboratory at the University of Illinois.  “Distressed housing sales have declined to levels last seen in 2009 as prices continue to move upwards at modest rates.  The consumer sentiment indices are once again moving in opposite directions suggesting that there is uncertainty in the way consumers view future prospects.”

According to the data, thirty-seven (37) Illinois counties reported sales gains for October 2015 over previous-year numbers, including Rock Island County, up 18.3 percent with 142 units sold; Madison County, up 10.6 percent with 302 units sold; Sangamon County, up 7.1 percent with 257 units sold; Will County, up 3.1 percent with 925 units sold; and DuPage County, up 1.5 percent with 1,134 units sold.

Fifty-five (55) counties recorded median price gains in October 2015 over previous-year numbers, including Lake County, up 20.3 percent to $216,500; Peoria County, up 14.9 percent to $134,450; and Cook County, up 5.4 percent to $200,350.

The city of Chicago saw sales of 2,109 homes in October 2015, down 0.9 percent from last year when 2,128 homes were sold. The median price of a home in Chicago was $240,000, up 1.7 percent over October 2014 when the median price was $236,000.

"The start of the final quarter of the year was marked by plunging inventories, and that's having a corresponding impact on sales and prices," said Dan Wagner, president of the Chicago Association of REALTORS® and senior vice president for government relations for the Inland Real Estate Group. "What's crystal clear is there is still very keen interest in buying this late in the selling season, and there's no indication that the zeal to own a home is diminishing."

Sales and price information is generated by Multiple Listing Service closed sales reported by 29 participating Illinois REALTOR® local boards and associations including Midwest Real Estate Data LLC as of Nov. 7, 2015 for the period of Oct. 1 through Oct. 31. 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. (Note: Due to a technical difficulty with the multiple listing service upload, data for the Mid Valley Association of REALTORS® is not included in the October report.)

The Illinois Association of REALTORS® is a voluntary trade association whose 43,000 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




MEDIA ONLY: Economist Dr. Geoffrey J.D. Hewings will be available for media interviews between 9 a.m. and noon CDT on Nov. 23. He can be reached at 312-320-3460.