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May brings strong growth to Illinois home sales and prices

FOR RELEASE: June 22, 2016

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — The year’s housing market momentum continues with Illinois home sales and prices posting robust gains in May, according to the Illinois REALTORS®.

Statewide home sales (including single-family homes and condominiums) in May 2016 totaled 16,150 homes sold, up 6.0 percent from 15,237 in May 2015.

The statewide median price in May was $194,000 up 7.2 percent from May 2015 when the median price was $181,000. The median is a typical market price where half the homes sold for more and half sold for less.

“Inventories continue to be tight across the state as buyers scour the market for deals,” said Mike Drews, GRI, Illinois REALTORS® president. “The pronounced demand we have seen for more than a year appears to be setting this selling season up to be one where homes go quickly and for more money, which is a huge advantage for sellers.”

The time it took to sell a home in May averaged 59 days, down from 70 days a year ago. Available housing inventory totaled 62,445 homes for sale, a 15.3 percent decline from May 2015 when there were 73,724 homes on the market.

The monthly average commitment rate for a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage was 3.60 percent in May 2016, unchanged from the previous month, according to the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. In May 2015 it averaged 3.82 percent.

In the nine-county Chicago Primary Metropolitan Statistical Area (PMSA), home sales (single-family and condominiums) in May 2016 totaled 11,664 homes sold, up 7.5 percent from May 2015 sales of 10,847 homes. The median price in May 2016 was $234,500 in the Chicago PMSA, up 6.1 percent from $221,000 in May 2015.

“Median prices continue to grow, in Chicago, much of the growth was generated by much more rapid increases in the prices of foreclosed properties rather than regular sale prices,” said Geoffrey J.D. Hewings, director of the Regional Economics Applications Laboratory at the University of Illinois. “Given the uncertainty in the state’s economy and the pending national elections, the housing market continues to grow in terms of sales and prices and the short-term (three months ahead) forecasts remain positive.”

According to the data, forty-three (43) Illinois counties reported sales gains for May 2016 over previous-year numbers, including McLean County, up 21 percent with 288 units sold; DuPage County, up 11.5 percent with 1,507 units sold; and Peoria County, up 6.7 percent with 270 units sold. Forty-nine (49) counties showed year-over-year median price increases including Winnebago County, up 32.9 percent to $112,900; McHenry County, up 13.0 percent to $200,000; Sangamon County, up 12.9 percent to $142,000, and Cook County, up 4.3 percent to $245,000.

The city of Chicago saw a 5.0 percent year-over-year home sales increase in May 2016 with 2,887 sales, up from 2,750 in May 2015. The median price of a home in the city of Chicago in May 2016 was $291,000, up 3.6 percent compared to May 2015 when it was $281,000.

“Sellers are still seeing healthy median price gains in the Chicago market, particularly in the single-family segment,” said Dan Wagner, president of the Chicago Association of REALTORS® and senior vice president for government relations at the Oakbrook-based Inland Real Estate Group of Companies, Inc. “The 40 days it’s taking to sell a home in Chicago underscores the fast-moving nature of this market and shows that the city is powerfully attractive to buyers.”

Sales and price information is generated by Multiple Listing Service closed sales reported by 28 participating Illinois REALTOR® local boards and associations including Midwest Real Estate Data LLC data as of June 7, 2016 for the period May 1 through May 31, 2016. 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.

Illinois REALTORS® is a voluntary trade association whose more than 44,000 members are engaged in all facets of the real estate industry. In addition to serving the professional needs of its members, Illinois 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.