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Chicago Now

Our main blog has been moved to chicagonow.com/getting-real
but we occasionally post articles here as well.

Chicago Condo Market Looking Grim

Friday, February 20th, 2009 by Gary Lucido

Well, it looks bad for sellers but good for buyers. Our recent check of months of supply of 2 – 3 bedroom condos in the city clearly highlights what we all instinctively know: there is a ton of inventory out there.

Chicago Months Of Condo Inventory

2008 was uniformly higher than 2007 and really shot up over the last 4 months, hitting highs above a 20 month supply. Although inventory pulled back in January like it always does, it’s still higher than 2008 at a 17 month supply.

Meanwhile, there is a clear upward trend in the days on the market for condos that sell, though it hasn’t really broken out of the 80 – 100 day average that has existed for the last 2 years.

There is really only one way for this glut to correct itself. Prices will come down. They are coming down.

Chicago Condo Days On Market

You can always find our latest statistics on the Chicago market here and we also keep inventory and days on the market data at the neighborhood level:

Chicago Condo Market Glut Reaches Biblical Proportions

Friday, December 12th, 2008 by Gary Lucido

I knew it was bad and getting worse but as we updated our Chicago neighborhood housing market statistics I started to see deterioration on a scale I had not seen before. It used to be that the evidence of a slowdown was limited to the fringe areas of the city. Sacred neighborhoods like Lincoln Park and Lakeview seemed to be immune. However, that was not the case in November and December which saw home inventory levels (on a months of supply basis) rise to unprecedented levels throughout the city. So I decided to look at Chicago as a whole for the first time. The picture is not pretty.

We follow 2 – 3 bedroom condominiums in the city because they are such a large percentage of the housing stock. Although Chicago condo inventory has been on an upward trend for the entire year it seems to have really skyrocketed in the last 2 months as a result of plunging sales. Inventory levels are approaching 2 years of supply.

Meanwhile, there is a clear pattern of these condos taking longer to sell (the ones that did sell). After a brief spike in the spring of 2007, it was taking slightly longer than 80 days for condos to sell for about a year. However, there is a clear upward trend in the data over the last year and it is now taking more than 100 days for condos to sell in Chicago (again, those that do sell).

We have neighborhood level housing data at the following links. Be sure to check out Lincoln Park and Lakeview:

This may be stating the obvious but with inventory levels rising and mortgage rates coming down it looks like it’s going to be a great spring for buyers. Not so much for sellers, though the decline in mortgage rates should increase demand.

Lakeview Housing Market Immune to Chicago Woes?

Monday, June 16th, 2008 by Gary Lucido

While the housing market is hurting in most parts of Chicago, Lakeview mysteriously remains somewhat immune. Not too long ago Crain’s ran an article which showed data calculated by Fiserv Lending Solutions which calculated the Case-Shiller index down to the zip code level for 76 different zip codes in the Chicago area where they had enough data. Their analysis showed that home prices had declined last year in all of those zip codes except for 6 and Lakeview (essentially 60657) was one of them. In fact, the Fiserv analysis shows Lakeview home prices actually increasing by 4.6 – 6.0%. And this is not the flimsy median price analysis that I often complain about when I see it in the Chicago Tribune. It’s a far more accurate analysis based upon sequential sales of the same homes over time.

This seems to be consistent with a recent analysis of Lakeview condo prices I did myself as part of a listing presentation for the same zip code:

Lakeview condo supply

The data shows that the months supply of inventory (for 2-3 bedroom and 2+ bathroom condos) for Lakeview is actually slightly better than it was a year ago. The only signs of strain are in the number of days on the market for condos that go under contract, which is trending upward.

Frankly, I’m baffled by this. With the huge and growing condo glut in the city and all other zip codes experiencing deterioration how long can Lakeview remain isolated? I lived there myself for a while and it’s a great community but doesn’t Lakeview real estate compete with surrounding communities that are offering better and better deals all the time?

For more current data on the Lakeview real estate market visit our Lakeview community profile page.



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