No one needs to tell my home sellers that traffic was off during the month of October. The Illinois Association of Realtors released data for existing home sales this morning.
In the city of Chicago, October home sales were down 39.5 percent to 1,217 sales compared to 2,012 homes sold in October 2009. Remarkably, however, year-to-date total home sales (single-family and condominiums) remain up 4.6 percent January through October 2010 with 16,502 sales compared to 15,772 home sales for the same period in 2009.
The city of Chicago median price in October 2010 was $183,000, down 14.9 percent compared to $215,000 a year ago in October 2009. The year-to-date median sales price for the city of Chicago is down 7.3 percent to $208,500 from $225,000 in 2009.
“The Midwest continues to feature a housing market that is struggling to recover and the story in both Illinois and Chicago reflects the experience of the broader geographic region,” said Geoffrey J.D. Hewings, the Director of the Regional Economics Applications Laboratory at the University of Illinois. “The uncertainties generated by the foreclosure lawsuit processes may provide some temporary decrease in the number of foreclosed properties entering the market. However, this is likely to be short-lived; moreover, once the legal problems clear a backlog of discounted properties will enter the market.”
The Illinois unemployment rate lowered by -0.1 point to 9.8 percent in October marking the seventh consecutive month that the state’s unemployment rate has fallen. The national unemployment rate remained unchanged at 9.6 percent in October and non-farm payroll employment increased by 151,000, up 874,000 since December 2009 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Adds Hewings: “The volume of job creation nationally approaches the level, on a monthly basis, that if sustained would provide some measure of optimism for a rebound in the economy in employment terms.”
Read the entire report from the Illinois Association of Realtors here.