Archive for the 'Local Markets' Category

Micro Market Review: Year 2015

2015 is finally coming to a close and it’s time again to see how the year did in relation to 2014 statistics. The review is for a micro market review of Evanston and Wilmette Communities. Statistics are from all sales posted up to December 29, 2015 a couple of days before the end of the year.

I have included both Single Family and Attached closed statistics for each community.

Year 2014: Single Family

City # Closed Avg. Sold Price Avg. Days on Mkt. % Increase/ Decrease
Evanston 424 $525,432 71 0
Wilmette 368 $861,219 58 0

Year 2015: Single Family

City # Closed Avg. Sold Price Avg. Days on Mkt. % Increase/ Decrease
Evanston 485 $576,526 81 9%
Wilmette 358 $852,961 72 0

Summary:

All year agents were complaining about low inventory but in reality the number of homes sold was the same for single family homes for the past two years. Evanston prices actually increased 9% while Wilmette remained about the same. Wilmette’s average home prices however are much higher than Evanston. The average market time was also the same for the past two years.

 

Yr 2014: Attached

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City # Closed Avg. Sold Price Avg. Days on Mkt. % Increase/ Decrease
Evanston 548 $260,949 89 0%
Wilmette 95 $335,373 114 0%

Year 2015 Attached

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City # Closed Avg. Sold Price Avg. Days on Mkt. % Increase/ Decrease
Evanston 637 $258,292 92 0%
Wilmette 83 $341,445 109 1%

Summary:

Attached properties include both condo and townhouse sales.  Evanston has more attached homes than Wilmette. Inventory levels for Evanston were slightly better than Wilmette. However the  average sale price seems to be flat with no increase. Average days on market is also about the same.

Written by Jack Lewitz | Discussion: No Comments »

Berger Park History and the Chicago Lake Shore

berger park

Berger Park Cultural Center

The Downey Mansion built in 1906 at a cost of $20,000 was designed by Architect W.C Zimmerman and is a perfect example of a Prairie Style home.

The Downey’s who came for Ireland in 1856 and was on the Board of Education and Work for Public Works lived in the mansion until 1934. Upon Mrs. Downey’s death in 1934 the house was donated to the Clerics St Viator in 1944.

The property consists of 3.5 acres and fell to hard times and in 1979 it was a proposed site for a high rise apartment building. The Edgewater Community Council and other residents in the community lobbied to prevent this from happening and the Chicago Park District purchased the property in 1981.

The acquisition of this property by Chicago Park District includes 450 feet of lakefront and includes the Downey Mansion and the Gunder Mansion along with 2 coach houses.

If you wish to visit Berger Park take the 151 or 147 Bus line on Sheridan Road and get off at Granville Street. The mansion address is 6205 and 6219 N Sheridan Road.

 

Written by Jack Lewitz | Discussion: No Comments »

10 Reasons to Live in Chicago

1. State Street: Chicago is really an easy city to get around. State and Madison is where the city begins State Street runs North and South and Madison runs East and West. At State and Madison you are at 0 degrees north and south and 0 degrees east and west. State Stree is still a Great Street with Macy’s or what I still refer as the old Marshall Fields.

2. Science and Industry Museum:  Chicago has some of the best museums from the Science and Industry, Field Museum, The Shedd Aquarium, The Adler Planetarium, Dusable Museum, Oriental Institute just to name a few

 

3. Buckingham Fountain: The Buckingham Fountain was built in 1927 and is a center piece to Chicago and its wondrful parks. Buckingham Fountain makes you feel like you are in Paris.

4. The Art Institute: One of the premier Museum of Art in the world with one of the best Impressionist Art Collections.

5. Michigan Ave: Most beautiful street with the best shopping in the world. Picture shows one of two water towers that survived the Great Chicago Fire.

 

6. The Chicago River:  Take a tour down the Chicago River or come visit during St. Patricks day and watch the River turn green.

 

7. The Chicago Blues Festival: Attend one of the many festivals and enjoy Blues, Jazz, Gospel, Classical,  to Rock.

 

8. China town: Enjoy the food at China Town, Greek Town, Italian Neighborhood, Pilsen for Mexican.

 

9. Lincoln Park Zoo: Open all year long and free.

 

10. Frank Lloyd Wright: Enjoy the different archecture styles from Prairie Style, Queen Anne, Victorian to mid-century  modern.

 

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788 Marion Highland Park

788 Marion in Highland Park offers a buyer a unique opportunity.

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Illinois Association of Realtors Predictions for 2015

 

 

land-of-lincoln

 

The Illinois Association of Realtors is predicting modest growth in home sales and home prices in 2015. They are predicting a better economic outlook for 2015 with more jobs.

While it is true the real estate market is the last to recover during a bad economy. The fact that the economy is finally recovering does not mean the housing market will recover quickly

Keeping an eye on the number of jobs created this year and what happens downstate with a new Governor is critical to the housing market

 

housing market

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WGN Rates Chicago 13 out of 33 Richest Cities

WGN rates Chicago 13 out of 33 Richest Cities.  I am not surprised that Chicago and our Midwest upbringing rates us in the middle of the pack. This to me is a good thing to be rated in the middle because then we have room to improve. While I am glad Chicago is not the cheapest City to live in I am happy we are not considered the most expensive. My only objection to this report is the number 13 and that is because I am a little superstitious.

Written by Jack Lewitz | Discussion: No Comments »

Alderman wants to explore fighting foreclosures with eminent domain

By: Micah  MaidenbergJuly 30, 2012

(Crain’s) — Chicago’s City Council is wading into the debate about whether  governments should use their eminent domain power to save borrowers from  foreclosure.

 

Under a controversial plan pitched by a San Francisco-based investment firm,  municipalities and counties would use their eminent domain authority to buy up  mortgages that are “underwater,” or exceed the value of the homes securing them.  The governments would then reduce the principal owed on the loans and sell them  to private investors.

 

Officials in Southern California and in New York already are considering the  idea. Now, Chicago Ald. Edward Burke (14th) wants a joint committee to convene  by mid-August to consider whether the city should pursue such tactics.

 

“This is something that’s starting to percolate in all major cities around  the country,” said Mr. Burke, the powerful chair of the council’s Committee on  Finance. “I’d like Chicago to be the first if it’s beneficial.”

 

Mr. Burke and Ald. Carrie Austin (34th) introduced a resolution at the City  Council meeting last week calling for a hearing on the matter. A spokeswoman for  Mayor Rahm Emanuel said the mayor’s office is reviewing the resolution.

 

Finance groups oppose the use of eminent domain powers to seize mortgages,  arguing that they don’t pass constitutional muster and will scare off lenders  from communities that adopt such tactics.

 

“I think what the discussion will find is this would be a bad policy outcome  for the city of Chicago,” said Thomas Deutsch, executive director of the New  York-based American Securitization Forum, a trade group.

 

Mortgage Resolution Partners LLC, the San Francisco-based firm pushing the  idea, has had “conversations with people in the state of Illinois about the  potential use of this technique,” said Steven Gluckstern, the company’s  chairman. He declined to discuss specifics.

 

“When you have underwater mortgages, no amount of modification is going to  fix that problem,” Mr. Gluckstern said. “The way to fix that problem is  principal reduction.”

 

The firm is targeting underwater loans that have been packaged into  mortgage-backed securities but are not guaranteed by the federally backed  housing agencies Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.

 

More  than 503,000 residential properties in Cook County with mortgages  were underwater in the first quarter, representing nearly 33 percent of all  homes with mortgages, according to a recent report from research firm  CoreLogic.

 

Using eminent domain to seize mortgages “would help refinance some of the  most difficult loans that are subject to legal restrictions that make principal  reductions difficult or impossible,” said Thomas Feltner, vice president at the  Woodstock Institute, a Chicago-based non-profit that focuses on lending  issues.

 

He added that the mere possibility of the city using its eminent domain  powers could nudge lenders into making principal reductions.

 

“It’s a new idea and I think we don’t know a lot about it,” said Cook County  Commissioner Bridget Gainer (10th), who has focused on foreclosure-related  issues during her time on the county board.

 

But Ms. Gainer said the debate is worth having.

 

“You need to be willing to challenge assumptions to get an answer to a  problem that has been intractable,” she said.

 

The Illinois Mortgage Bankers Association, however, is all but certain to  oppose a measure that would allow the city to use eminent domain to take over  residential mortgages.

 

“I can’t see anyone on our board supporting this,” said James Trausch, the  group’s general counsel. Mortgage lenders won’t underwrite debt if “your  mortgage is subject to some outside agency determining what its value  is.”

Read more: http://www.chicagorealestatedaily.com/article/20120730/CRED03/120739989/alderman-wants-to-explore-fighting-foreclosures-with-eminent-domain#ixzz22J6jneL2 Stay up-to-date on Chicago real estate with our free, daily e-newsletter

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REAL ESTATE FORECAST by Illinois Association of Realtors

Illinois housing market forecast for the second half of 2011by Mary Schaefer on August 18, 2011

July Illinois home sales were up 18.4 percent from a year ago, a strong jump and the first year-over-year sales gain since June of 2010 when sales were still under the influence of the homebuyer tax credit stimulus, according to the Illinois Association of REALTORS® July Home Sales Report issued today.

With mortgage interest rates still at record lows, affordability conditions remain strong for qualified and motivated buyers who are out there studying their options. However, the current level of economic uncertainty and tight credit are taking a toll on buyer confidence.

“The market, like the economy, continues to struggle even though interest rates and prices would appear to suggest favorable conditions for housing purchases,” said economist Dr. Geoffrey J.D. Hewings, director of the Regional Economics Applications Laboratory (REAL) of the University of Illinois.

In the latest REAL forecast for the Illinois housing market, Dr. Hewings indicates that when we get stronger signals from the economy with sustained employment growth of the order of 200,000 jobs added per month, that is when “we can we expect to see a sustained uptick in housing sales and some modest recovery in prices.”

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Chicago Tops List in Number of Foreclosures

Chicago Has Most Foreclosed Homes Of Any City In Americafrom The Full Feed from HuffingtonPost.com by The Huffington Post News EditorsAlthough it never shared the notoriety of Miami, Los Angeles and Phoenix during America’s foreclosure crisis, the Chicago area now has the nation’s largest inventory of foreclosed homes because it is harder to unload troubled properties here than in most other metropolitan areas. The inventory data compiled by RealtyTrac, a California company that tracks housing sales, place Chicago first among the country’s 20 largest metropolitan areas. Real estate experts attribute the high concentration of foreclosures to numerous factors including the strong protections built into Illinois law to protect borrowers, the impact of the “robo-signing” investigation by the Illinois Attorney General, and the reluctance of banks to dump properties at prices far below the value of mortgage loans on their books.

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Case Shiller Report on Real Estate in Chicago Reported by Francine Knowles

Home prices in the Chicago metropolitan area set a new low since prices peaked in 2006, falling 2.2 percent in November from October and 7.6 percent over the year.

 

That is according to the latest Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller Home Price index, which showed prices weakening across the country and also setting new post-peak lows in eight other cities.

 

The annual decline in the Chicago area was the second biggest among 20 major metropolitan areas, trailing only Atlanta, which posted a 7.9 percent decline. But the drop in the Chicago area was an improvement from the 8.5 percent annual drop reported in November 2009.

 

The index for the Chicago area stood at 119.57 in November 2010, falling below the 119.71 level of last March, which had been the low for the year, and marking the lowest point since April 2002, when it stood at 118.97.

 

The 10-city composite fell 0.8 percent over the month and slid 0.4 percent over the year, while the 20-city composite fell 1 percent over the month and dropped 1.6 percent over the year. Home prices fell in 19 of 20 metropolitan areas over the month, excluding San Diego, which reported a 0.1 percent gain. Only four metropolitan areas showed gains over the year—Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco and Washington, D.C.

 

The eight other metropolitan areas that set new lows since home prices peaked in 2006 and 2007 are Detroit, Las Vegas, Miami, Tampa, Atlanta, Charlotte, Portland and Seattle.

 

“With these numbers, more analysts will be calling for a double-dip in home prices,” David Blitzer, chairman of the Index Committee at S&P said in a statement. “Certainly nine cities setting new lows and with the only positive news concentrated in southern California and Washington, D.C., the data point to weakness in home prices.”

 

 Thirteen of the metropolitan areas and both composites have posted at least seven months of decline since the beginning of 2010. The Chicago area has posted five months of decline since then. As of November, average home prices across the country are back to the levels they were in the latter half of 2003. Since June and July 2006, the 10-city and 20-city composites are down 30.3 percent.

 

Home prices in the Chicago metropolitan area set a new low since prices peaked in 2006, falling 2.2 percent in November from October and 7.6 percent over the year.

That is according to the latest Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller Home Price index, which showed prices weakening across the country and also setting new post-peak lows in eight other cities.

The annual decline in the Chicago area was the second biggest among 20 major metropolitan areas, trailing only Atlanta, which posted a 7.9 percent decline. But the drop in the Chicago area was an improvement from the 8.5 percent annual drop reported in November 2009.

The index for the Chicago area stood at 119.57 in November 2010, falling below the 119.71 level of last March, which had been the low for the year, and marking the lowest point since April 2002, when it stood at 118.97.

The 10-city composite fell 0.8 percent over the month and slid 0.4 percent over the year, while the 20-city composite fell 1 percent over the month and dropped 1.6 percent over the year. Home prices fell in 19 of 20 metropolitan areas over the month, excluding San Diego, which reported a 0.1 percent gain. Only four metropolitan areas showed gains over the year—Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco and Washington, D.C.

The eight other metropolitan areas that set new lows since home prices peaked in 2006 and 2007 are Detroit, Las Vegas, Miami, Tampa, Atlanta, Charlotte, Portland and Seattle.

“With these numbers, more analysts will be calling for a double-dip in home prices,” David Blitzer, chairman of the Index Committee at S&P said in a statement. “Certainly nine cities setting new lows and with the only positive news concentrated in southern California and Washington, D.C., the data point to weakness in home prices.”

 

Thirteen of the metropolitan areas and both composites have posted at least seven months of decline since the beginning of 2010. The Chicago area has posted five months of decline since then. As of November, average home prices across the country are back to the levels they were in the latter half of 2003. Since June and July 2006, the 10-city and 20-city composites are down 30.3 percent.

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