Posted by Kristyan Morgan on Sep 17, 2012 08:21 AM EDT

Home Sales Momentum in Chicago is a Good Sign

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The number of days a property stays in the market has decreased and the number of sales in the seven-county metropolitan Chicago real estate market has risen, spelling a positive sign for the overall property market in the area.

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According to an analysis released by RE/MAX, the August sale of detached and attached homes increased 26.5 percent from last year to 915 units, and the average number of days a property stayed in the market reduced from 165 a year ago to 139 this year.

Buoying the real estate market in Chicago, home sales have increased. (Creative Commons)
Buoying the real estate market in Chicago, home sales have increased. (Creative Commons)

“The inventory of homes for sale and the days needed to sell a home continue to shrink, which is a positive sign for home values going forward. It also indicates that the market is being brought back into balance,” Laura Ortoleva, a spokesperson for the RE/MAX Northern Illinois real estate network, said in a statement.

The inventory in the area has fallen three percent from last year’s levels, she added.

Industry experts believe that increased sales activity is bringing down the inventory, which will help a market that’s on a recovery mode.

"We think it's the start of the rebound," Edward Prodehl, owner of Coldwell Banker Honig-Bell told the Chicago Tribune. "We're seeing many, many multiple offers and homes selling in a much shorter period of time. That will drive prices up.”

However, more foreclosure properties have to be listed in the market to maintain a sense of balance and reduce the chances of a drastic increase in prices, experts believe. At present both homeowners and banks are holding on to their properties in the hope of getting a better price in future.

Meanwhile, on the price front, the median selling price declined 4.4 percent from same time last year to $170,000. In July, the median selling price was $205,000.

"From a homeowner standpoint, you'd like to see the median price turn around," Matt Farrell, managing partner of Urban Real Estate, told the Chicago Tribune. "Even this drop is pretty stable. When you have this activity, it's a good sign of things to come."

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