CHICAGO, July 20, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- First-half home sales activity in the seven-county metropolitan Chicago real estate market this year rebounded to pre-Great Recession levels. Total sales reached 52,239 units, the most since 2006 and 9 percent higher than during the first half of 2014, according to RE/MAX.
Home values also continued rising. The median sales price of a home in the metro area climbed 11 percent during the first half of 2015 when compared to the same period in 2014, coming in at $210,222. That is the highest median sales price recorded for the period since 2008.
The average time required to sell a home was 100 days, two days longer than in 2014.
"We're seeing a much more robust housing market this year than in 2014 and even 2013," said Jim Merrion, regional director of the RE/MAX Northern Illinois real estate network. "A combination of factors is at work – mortgage interest rates remain low, the economy is adding jobs at an encouraging rate and there's a larger inventory of homes for sale. Also contributing to the improved market has been the steady increase in home values over the last few years. That has reduced the number of so-called underwater homes, where the property is worth less than the mortgage balance, and it has allowed many owners eager to relocate to do so."
Another reflection of the healthier housing market is the continued reduction in the number of distressed properties, primarily short sales and foreclosures, being sold. "Distressed homes accounted for 44 percent of all sales during the first six months of 2011. This year, the distressed share of the market was down to 24.5 percent," Merrion noted.
The home sales data used in the RE/MAX analysis is collected by MRED, the regional multiple listing service and covers detached and attached homes in the Illinois counties of Cook, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry and Will. Detached homes are typically stand-alone single-family dwellings. Attached homes include condominium and cooperative apartments along with townhouses and duplex units.
All seven counties recorded first-half increases in both home sales activity and the median home sales price when compared to last year.
Sales activity increased most noticeably in Will and Kendall counties, where the gains were 16.5 percent and 13 percent respectively. Gains for the five other counties were 7 percent in Cook, 10 percent in DuPage, 6 percent in Kane and Lake and 12.5 percent in McHenry.
The largest rise in median sales price occurred in Kane County, which registered a 16 percent increase to $199,436. Results for the other counties were as follows: Cook gained 14 percent to $216,000; DuPage gained 5 percent to $245,000; Kendall gained 8 percent to $195,000; Lake gained 7.5 percent to $215,000; McHenry gained 8 percent to $175,000 and Will gained 7 percent to $182,000.
The City of Chicago, which accounted for 25 percent of all first-half home sales in the metro area, saw sales activity rise 9 percent to 13,328 units and its median sales price climb 10 percent to $267,000.
First-half sales of detached homes across the metro area rose 12 percent to 33,136 units, and sales of attached homes gained 4 percent to 19,103 units.
The median sales price of detached homes in the metro area was up 8 percent to $225,000, while for attached homes the median gained 12 percent to $182,500.
RE/MAX agents consistently rank among the most productive in the industry. In the United States, RE/MAX agents averaged 15.6 years of real estate experience and 16.0 transaction sides in 2014. RE/MAX has been the leader in the northern Illinois real estate market since 1989 and is continually growing. The RE/MAX Northern Illinois network, with headquarters in Elgin, Ill., consists of 2,200+ sales associates and 105 independently owned and operated RE/MAX offices that provide a full range of residential and commercial brokerage services. Its mobile real estate app, available for download at www.illinoisproperty.com, provides comprehensive information about residential and commercial property for sale in the region. The northern Illinois network is part of RE/MAX, a global real estate organization with 100,000+ sales associates in 90+ nations.
RE/MAX Northern Illinois
SOURCE RE/MAX Northern Illinois