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Chicago Condo Prices Drop to $267K as Illinois Jobless Rate Climbs

By DNAinfo Staff | February 23, 2016 11:43am | Updated on March 2, 2016 2:17pm
 The median price of a condo fell year-to-year in Chicago in January, says a new report.
The median price of a condo fell year-to-year in Chicago in January, says a new report.
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CHICAGO — The median sale price of a condo in the city of Chicago last month was $267,500, a decline of about 6 percent from January of 2015, a new report says.

The single family home median sale price in the city was up 13.8 percent in the same time period, to $185,000, according to the Illinois Association of Realtors.

Some 1,363 homes of both types sold in January of 2016 in Chicago, up 1.1 percent when compared to January of 2015.

In the nine-county Chicago area, the condo median sale price of $164,000 in January was up nearly 6 percent compared to a year earlier. The single family sale price of $175,100 was 13.3 percent better than January of 2015.

In a statement, Dan Wagner, president of the Chicago Association of Realtors, said he is optimistic about sales in the area, especially for spring.

But the long-term outlook is concerning to University of Illinois real estate expert Geofrey J.D. Hewings. In his February forecast prepared for the state realtors group, Hewings says that while the national unemployment rate edged down to 4.9 percent in January, in Illinois the rate edged up to 5.9 percent for December.

Last year the state lost about 3,000 jobs, he said. He forecasts that the state will not reach pre-recession employment levels until September of 2017.

“With Illinois ending 2015 with a net job loss for the first time since 2009, there is some concern about when this begins to affect the housing market,” wrote Hewings.

“Nationally, consumers seem more optimistic about selling a house than buying one; with the continuing budget impasse in Springfield, concerns about job retention are likely to dampen housing demand," he added.

The first quarter of 2016 "should provide a key to the impact of the state’s economy on the housing market,” Hewings wrote.

Nationally, the median sale price of homes across the country was up 11 percent in a January-to-January comparison in a market that doesn't have enough homes for sale, according to the National Association of Realtors.

Forbes quotes Lawrence Yun, the national group's chief economist, saying that home prices are rising too fast.

“Home prices ascending near or above double-digit appreciation aren’t healthy–especially considering the fact that household income and wages are barely rising,” Yun said.

The median sale price means that half of homes sold for more, half sold for less.

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