It’s still a seller’s market in Chicagoland

With data compiled from the end of spring, one thing is clear: It’s still a seller’s market. Across the state of Illinois, homes sold quicker in May 2022, year over year. Even as interest rates inched higher, demand remained strong.

During May, a total of 16,194 homes were sold statewide, according to Illinois REALTORS®. And though the number reflects a 10.1% year-over-year decline, that’s mainly due to the lack of inventory. Year over year, the number of for-sale homes dropped 24.4%, to 21,718 homes. Reflecting the tight competition, the median price also bumped up 6.2% to $276,000.

“This is a very good time to sell your home,” Illinois REALTORS® President Ezekiel “Zeke” Morris said in a press release. “The average Illinois home spent a little more than three weeks on the market during May, and some properties are drawing multiple offers from prospective buyers.” The average Illinois home spent 24 days on the market in May: down nine days from a year ago.

Statistics from the Chicago Association of REALTORS® (CAR) revealed that 3,335 properties were sold in the city proper during May 2022: 3.4% less than in May 2021. And although days on the market decreased 23.6%, to 55 days on average, the median sales price remained the same from last year: $350,000.

Within the Chicago metro area, though, home sales decreased at a more drastic rate of 10.6%. In total, 11,641 homes were sold in the area in May, but the price increase was slightly less steep —5.5% — bringing the metro median to $327,000. The average days on the market in Chicagoland also dropped 19.2% to 21 days in May.

“Clearly, we’re in an extreme seller’s market with historically low inventory and high buyer demand,” said John Gormley, CEO of the Mainstreet Association of REALTORS®, reflecting on data from the Chicago suburbs. “If a seller is ready, now is the time to list.”

According to Mainstreet, the suburbs which saw the sharpest decreases were, in order: Vernon Hills (down 89.3%), Sugar Grove (down 89.1%), Addison (down 84.5%), Antioch, (down 79.5%), Western Springs (down 72.6%), Western Springs (down 72.6%), Hinsdale (down 70%), Lemont (down 66.7%), Homewood, (down 62.1%), Mt. Prospect (down 60.7%), Oak Forest (down 56.6%), Naperville (down 56.4%) and Schaumburg (down 45.8%).

New numbers from the North Shore-Barrington Association of REALTORS® (NSBAR) paint a similar picture. As inventory continued to shrink in North Shore-Barrington region — new listings decreased 21% — prices rose further. The median sales price in that area is now $565,000, which reflects a 7.6% year-over-year bump to $565,000. And, with average days on the market falling to 38 days, an NSBAR statement notes that sellers were encouraged.

“Buyers are facing fierce competition and don’t have the luxury of time,” Mainstreet President John LeTourneau concluded. Especially as mortgage rates keep rising. “The longer you wait, the more expensive it’s likely to get,” Gormley added. “Over the course of a 30-year mortgage, there are still great financial upsides to buying a home, even in this market.”

Coupled with fears over inflation, home sales are now expected to bounce back over the next few months. Daniel McMillen, head of the Stuart Handler Department of Real Estate (SHDRE), expressed this SHDRE prediction in the press release from Illinois REALTORS®. “Foreclosures are down significantly since the same time last year,” he said. “Inflation continues to be a concern for consumers, particularly among higher-income households, and interest rates are expected to rise this summer.”

Antje Gehrken, CAR president, echoed the sentiment. “Despite rising mortgage rates and a significant drop in inventory, buyer activity remains high, as shown by the continued decline in days on market and slight uptick in median sales prices,” she said. “The market continues to slowly return to pre-pandemic behavior and normalize after a frantic pace.”

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