The 2019 Chicago real estate market had a slow start in January, and although activity has improved since then, February home sales prove that the high home buyer demand seen in recent years is dwindling.

On a positive side, residential sales overall and condo sales increased between January and February. However, both were down when compared to this time last year.  Overall sales, including single-family homes, townhouses and condos, are down 9.8 percent from a year ago. Meanwhile, the number of condo sales fell 10.2 percent year-over-year.

The median sales price in the city of Chicago for February was $272,000 – unchanged from last year but a $20,000 jump from January’s median sales price of $252,000. Note that our January market report originally cited the median sales price for the month at $253,000 due to delayed data from the MLS.

Condos in the city were more expensive in February than they were in January, but still 7.6 percent less expensive than they were last February. Buyers who purchased Chicago condos in February spent a median of $305,000.

Another important data point that illustrates market health is market time, or how long homes and condos took to sell in February. Over the past few years, homes that sold in February were the ones that sat on the market the longest of any month during the year.

For homes overall (which includes single-family houses, townhouses and condos), the median market time was 78 days, up from 71 days during the same period last year. Condos also took longer to sell this year with a median 81 days on the market (DOM), compared to 71 days in February 2018.

How much does it cost to buy a home in Chicago right now?

How much does it cost to buy a condo in Chicago right now?

Is the Chicago real estate market strong?

To help gauge the strength of each submarket, check out the annual changes in median sales price, number of closed sales, median market time and number of new listings for neighborhoods nearest downtown.

The Loop, Chicago 

  • Home prices in the Loop down 14.7%
  • Closed sales up 4.2%
  • Market time in the Loop up 32.5%
  • New listings up 9%


West Loop, Chicago 

  • West Loop home prices down 39.1%
  • Closed sales down 38.8%
  • West Loop market time up 284.4%
  • New listings up 46.4%


South Loop, Chicago

  • South Loop home prices up 1.3%
  • Closed sales down 10.8%
  • Market time up 38.9%
  • New listings down 8.9%


River North, Chicago

  • River North home prices down 10.8%
  • Closed sales down 5.9%
  • Market time up 48.6%
  • New listings up 25.2%


Gold Coast/Streeterville, Chicago

  • Gold Coast and Streeterville home prices down 15%
  • Closed sales down 15%
  • Market time down 10.8%
  • New listings down 3.6%


Old Town, Chicago

  • Old Town home prices down 7.9%
  • Closed sales down 30.8%
  • Market time up 68.8%
  • New listings down 15.4%


Lincoln Park, Chicago

  • Lincoln Park home prices up 11.3%
  • Closed sales up 11%
  • Market time up 58%
  • New listings up 22.2%


Lakeview, Chicago

  • Lakeview home prices down 15.1%
  • Closed sales up 4.4%
  • Market time up 4.1%
  • New listings down 0.8%


Logan Square/Bucktown, Chicago

  • Logan Square and Bucktown home prices up 7.5%
  • Closed sales up 6%
  • Market time down 4.7%
  • New listings up 11.8%


West Town/Wicker Park, Chicago

  • West Town and Wicker Park home prices down 13.6%
  • Closed sales down 25.8%
  • Market time down 16.5%
  • New listings up 33.1%


Avondale/North Center, Chicago 

  • Avondale and North Center home prices down 2.7%
  • Closed sales up 6.9%
  • Market time up 48.3%
  • New listings remained flat


Home prices fell year-over-year in almost every neighborhood except for Lincoln Park, Logan Square, Bucktown and South Loop. But in almost half of the neighborhoods surveyed (Lincoln Park, the Loop, Lakeview, Logan Square, Bucktown, Avondale and North Center), more homes sold this February compared to one year ago.

Downtown neighborhoods, usually flush with buyer demand, are not immune to sluggish sales. Much like the city overall, homes sold slower in the majority of downtown Chicago neighborhoods. In Gold Coast and Streeterville, two neighborhoods where sellers traditionally face longer market times, homes that sold in February wound up selling faster compared to those that sold a year ago. Logan Square and Bucktown, as well as West Town and Wicker Park, also saw homes sell faster in February 2019. New listings increased year-over-year in all neighborhoods surveyed except for South Loop, Gold Coast, Streeterville, Old Town and Lakeview.




Featured image: Z Chicago / Eugenie Terrace