Market Conditions: September Home Sales Third Hottest in Last 10 Years


Without further ado, here are the September home sales numbers.

From the Illinois Association of Realtors:

The city of Chicago saw a 3.2 percent year-over-year home sales decrease in September 2016 with 2,336 sales, down from 2,414 in September 2015. The median price of a home in the city of Chicago in September 2016 was $261,500, up 4.6 percent compared to September 2015 when it was $250,000.

September sales for the last 10 years:

  • 2007: 2172 sales
  • 2008: 1816 sales
  • 2009: 1918 sales
  • 2010: 1403 sales
  • 2011: 1498 sales
  • 2012: 1845 sales
  • 2013: 2395 sales
  • 2014: 2242 sales
  • 2015: 2414 sales
  • 2016: 2336 sales

Median prices for the last 10 years:

  • 2007: $267,750
  • 2008: $268,600
  • 2009: $225,000
  • 2010: $180,000
  • 2011: $190,000
  • 2012: $188,900
  • 2013: $230,000
  • 2014: $249,000
  • 2015: $250,000
  • 2016: $261,500

“We continue to see a vibrant Chicago real estate market with homes moving quickly and with steady median price gains,” said Matt Silver, president of the Chicago Association of REALTORS® and partner at Urban Real Estate. “It is taking 42 days to sell a home, indicating buyers are eager to purchase when they find the right property.”

Statewide, the number of days on the market was 58, down from 65 days a year ago.

“Annual sales growth in September was flat in Illinois and Chicago,” said Geoffrey J.D. Hewings, director of the Regional Economics Applications Laboratory at the University of Illinois. “Prices, though, continued to increase and this trend is expected to prevail for the next three months. Both the Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index and the University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index pointed to positive directions at the national level as a result of a positive outlook on the labor market. Unfortunately, job growth in Illinois has been way below the national level, dampening housing sales.”

Have home sales have been “dampened” in Chicago? Or was he only referring to the downstate market?

Even though the headline number shows a decrease, you have to take a wider perspective.

Last year was the hottest September in 10 years and this year was the 3rd hottest. That includes 2007 which was the year that they were building of thousands of condos all over the city.

Remember that market? Flippers and “investors” buying 2, 3 or 4 condos each.

Right now, there aren’t thousands of new condos being built and the sales are still hotter.

Imagine if there was more inventory?

September sales were most likely properties under contract in June, July and August.

Was the market hotter then?

Or will this red hot pace hold up into the winter months?

Illinois home prices increase in September; Sales slow slightly [Illinois Association of Realtors, Press Release, October 20, 2016]

A Peek Inside One of the Sandburg Village Townhouses: 1318 N. Sandburg in the Gold Coast


This 3-bedroom townhouse in the Sandburg Village at 1318 N. Sandburg in the Gold Coast came on the market in July 2016.

Built in 1965, there are several groupings of townhouses within the Sandburg Village which also includes high rises and studio homes.

This townhouse has east, west and south exposures.

It has some unique features including a private 400 square foot enclosed patio that leads to a fully enclosed grass courtyard that is shared by just 12 units.

The kitchen has white cabinets, stainless steel appliances and black counter tops.

The listing says the townhouse has 10 foot ceilings and a skylight.

Two of the three bedrooms are on the second floor, with the third on the main level. All three are generous in size.

The lower level has a family room, workout room and laundry room.

The townhouse has central air and garage parking.

The Sandburg Village townhouses rarely come on the market.

At under $1 million, is this a good family home option in one of the ritziest neighborhoods?

Paul Barker at Baird & Warner has the listing. See the pictures and the floor plan here.

1318 N. Sandburg: 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, townhouse, 2500 square feet

  • There’s no previous sale going back to 1986
  • Originally listed in July 2016 for $825,000
  • Currently still listed at $825,000
  • Fee simple but there’s a village HOA of $356 a month (includes cable, lawn care, scavenger and snow removal)
  • Taxes of $9423
  • Central Air
  • Garage parking included
  • Bedroom #1: 17×12 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #2: 17×11 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #3: 17×11 (main level)
  • Exercise room: 13×9 (basement)
  • Family room: 16×11 (basement)
  • Laundry room: 17×9 (basement)

Are Appliances Important to Buyers? A 2/2 at 2042 N. Clark in East Lincoln Park


This 2-bedroom at 2042 N. Clark in East Lincoln Park came on the market in May 2016.

This building was constructed in 2002 and has 10 units.

It has an elevator and garage parking.

The unit has 11-foot ceilings and unique Romanesque columns outside the entrance to the kitchen.

The kitchen has Italian cherry cabinets, granite counter tops and luxury appliances including a Subzero refrigerator, Thermadore range and Bosch dishwasher.

It has marble bathrooms.

It has the other features buyers look for including central air, washer/dryer in the unit and a garage parking space.

This unit has been on and off the market, and has been rented, over the last few years.

It has been reduced $46,000 since May to $499,000.

In a 2-bedroom condo, do luxury appliances sway you to make the purchase?

Akos Straub at Coldwell Banker has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #4N: 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1350 square feet

  • Sold in July 2002 for $476,000
  • Originally listed in May 2016 for $545,000
  • Reduced several times
  • Currently listed for $499,000 (includes garage parking)
  • Assessments of $447 a month (includes exterior maintenance, lawn care, scavenger, snow removal)
  • Taxes of $9219
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Bedroom #1: 15×13
  • Bedroom #2: 14×11


Get a 3-Bedroom Duplex Up for Under $650,000 in East Lincoln Park: 2141 N. Clark


This 3-bedroom duplex up at 2141 N. Clark in East Lincoln Park came on the market in June 2016.

It has soaring ceilings and multiple exposures.

The kitchen has granite counter tops and stainless steel appliances.

It has the preferred layout with all three bedrooms on the second floor.

There’s also a family room on the main floor that the listing says can be used as a dining room.

It has central air, washer/dryer in the unit and garage parking.

This location is truly “east” Lincoln Park. It’s just steps from the Lincoln Park Zoo.

The listing also says its in the Lincoln school district.

This unit has been reduced $14,500 to $645,000 since June.

However, it last sold only a year ago for $620,000.

Will it get the premium over the sale just 12 months ago?

Mario Greco at Berkshire Hathaway KoenigRubloff has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #3: 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, 2200 square feet, duplex up

  • Sold in March 1996 for $212,000
  • Sold in June 2000 for $395,000
  • Sold in April 2003 for $485,000
  • Sold in Mary 2006 for $720,000
  • Sold in October 2015 for $620,000
  • Originally listed in June 2016 for $659,500
  • Reduced
  • Currently listed for $645,000
  • Assessments of $220 a month (includes exterior maintenance, scavenger)
  • Taxes of $11,800
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Garage parking included
  • Bedroom #1: 22×12 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #2: 15×11 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #3: 14×11 (second floor)


The Most Bizarre Listing Ever on Crib Chatter? A Row House at 848 W. Belden in Lincoln Park


This 3-bedroom historic row house at 848 W. Belden in Lincoln Park just came on the market.

Built between 1884 and 1889, these row houses make up the McCormick Row House District. They are found on both Fullerton and Belden as well as Chalmers Place, which is the secret street in between.

The picture above is of the second grouping on Belden which is numbered up to 858 W. Belden. 848 W. Belden would be on the far right of this group of row homes.

They were apparently originally built to provide rental income for the nearby McCormick Theological Seminary.

They were designated Chicago Historic Landmarks in the 1970s.

There are 56 total homes. I also believe there’s a homeowners association with an assessment, although the listing for this row house says it is “fee simple” and doesn’t list any HOA fees.

These were built in the Queen Anne style. Some of them still contain their vintage features like crown moldings and fireplaces.

We don’t know what remains inside this one because there are no interior pictures with the listing.

Here’s what the description says:


For comparison purposes, only one other row house is currently on the market.

This end unit at 841 W. Chalmers Place is a 5400 square foot 5-bedroom home. It has been on and off the market since 2013.

It is currently listed at $1,749,850.

You can see pictures of that row house here.

Even with that requirements of listing, given the nearby comps, could this row house be a deal for someone with the cash?

Michael Olszewski at Area Wide Realty has the listing. See the listing here.

848 W. Belden: 3 bedrooms, 3.5 baths, 2904 square feet

  • Sold in July 1997 for $658,000
  • Lis pendens foreclosure filed in October 2009
  • Bank owned in January 2015
  • Currently listed “as-is” for $993,200
  • Cash only
  • Taxes of $14,157
  • Listing says no central air
  • Listing says 2-car parking
  • Bedroom #1: 19×14 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #2: 13×11 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #3: 12×10 (second floor)
  • Den: 12×11 (second floor)

Are Renovators Good for the Housing Market? 130 N. Garland in the Loop


This 2-bedroom in the Heritage at 130 N. Garland across from Millennium Park in the Loop just came on the market.

But some of you who have been looking in the Loop might recognize it as it was on the market in the spring.

Apparently, it was bank owned and for sale via auction.

It sold in April 2016 and is now back on the market completely renovated.

This unit used to be a 3-bedroom but the walls for the third bedroom were removed to make an expansive living room.

There are new hardwood floors throughout.

There’s also new LED recessed lighting.

The kitchen has new Italian modern cabinetry and Viking appliances.

The bathrooms have been updated with marble.

It has east facing views along with central air and washer/dryer in the unit.

Deeded parking is available for $50,000 extra.

This unit was originally listed by the bank in February 2016 at $865,000.

It sold at an auction in April 2016 for $680,000.

You can see what it looked like at the time of the auction here.

It’s come back on the market listed for $419,000 above the auction sales price, at $1.099 million.

The renovation shows are popular again on various cable stations like HGTV and DIY.

Buyers want “new.”

Are renovators doing a service in this tight housing market by upgrading the housing stock?

And will this renovator get the premium on this unit?

Robert White at Conlon has the listing. It is agent owned. See the pictures here.

Unit #3803: 2 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, 1758 square feet

  • Sold in July 2005 for $1,004,000 (no parking included)
  • Lis pendens foreclosure filed in October 2012
  • Bank owned in October 2013
  • Was originally listed in February 2016 for $865,000
  • Withdrawn
  • Auctioned
  • Sold in April 2016 for $680,000
  • Renovated and now listed for $1.099 million (parking available for $50,000 extra)
  • Assessments of $1042 a month (includes gas, cable, Internet, doorman, pool, lawn care, scavenger, exterior maintenance, snow removal)
  • Taxes of $12,436
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Bedroom #1: 17×13
  • Bedroom #2: 13×13
  • Living room: 25×28


Did You Go to Open House Chicago Last Weekend? 2601 W. Lunt in Indian Boundary Park


This 5-bedroom bungalow at 2601 W. Lunt in the Indian Boundary Park neighborhood of West Ridge came on the market in August 2016.

Built in 1926, it is on an extra large 56×124 corner lot diagonally across the street from the Indian Boundary Park.

Several neighborhood buildings were on the recent Open House Chicago map, including the Indian Boundary Park cultural center.

Built in 1929, 3 years after this house across the street, in the Tudor Revival style, it was nearly destroyed in a fire in 2012 but has now been restored.

Here’s an interior picture of that beautiful building.


This house also has beamed ceilings just like the cultural center.

The listing says there is a “new gourmet kitchen” with a 36 inch Wolf range, stainless steel appliances, 42 inch cabinets, granite counter tops and a farmhouse sink.

The basement has been waterproofed and there are new gutters.

It also has a landscaped back yard along with a 2-car garage.

There’s no central air, but the house has space pac cooling.

The house is listed for $550,000 and hasn’t reduced.

Is over $500,000 the new price point for this neighborhood in this hot market?

Denis Girard at Keller Williams Team Realty has the listing. See the pictures here.

2601 W. Lunt: 5 bedrooms, 3 baths, no square footage listed

  • Sold in November 2009 for $373,000
  • Originally listed in August 2016 for $550,000
  • Still listed for $550,000
  • Taxes of $6587
  • No central air- but there’s space pac cooling
  • Bedroom #1: 15×14 (main level)
  • Bedroom #2: 15×13 (main level)
  • Bedroom #3: 19×13 (second level)
  • Bedroom #4: 14×12 (second level)
  • Bedroom #5: 12×10 (second level)
  • Florida room: 15×9



Go to Open House Chicago This Weekend: A 3-Bedroom at 7321 S. South Shore


This 3-bedroom at the Windsor Beach Apartments at 7321 S. South Shore in South Shore has been on and off the market since 2007.

If you were one of the five people reading this site when it first launched in 2007, you would remember this building and unit as we chattered about it in October 2007.

See our prior chatter here (which was really no one at that time!).

But there’s no denying the coolness of this building.

According to Emporis, construction was started on this building in 1927 when there was a flurry of building of luxury lake front apartment buildings in Chicago.

With 64-units, it was completed in 1928, just before the stock market crash.

Designed by Robert De Golyer, it is in the Renaissance Revival style with Moorish architecture, including arches.

Its footprint resembles a Maltese Cross.

The building is also one of the few that has a private beach on Lake Michigan.

It is on the National Register of Historic Places.

This unit has a grand foyer and vintage moldings.

The listing says it has Northeast views.

It has a rehabbed bath.

The kitchen has modern cabinets, with stainless steel refrigerator and a convection oven. The listing says it has custom lighting.

There is no in-unit washer/dryer or central air. The building has a private parking lot next door with a camera and security guards with rental spots for $20 a month.

This building is a co-op with a doorman. The HOA apparently includes the taxes.

In 2007, this was listed at $97,500. It apparently never sold.

9 years later, it is now listed at $105,000.

If you want to see the building, and its distinctive architecture, it will be on the Open House Chicago tours on Saturday and Sunday from 9am to 5pm.

If you want to see some of Chicago’s finest architecture, this weekend is your chance.

It’s free.


Will this co-op finally sell in this hot market?

Ray Blaney at Re/Max Premier has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #2D: 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, 2400 square feet

  • I don’t have a prior sales price because it’s a co-op
  • Was listed in 2007 for $97,500
  • Was on and off the market since
  • Currently listed at $105,000
  • Assessments of $836 a month (includes heat, gas, taxes, doorman, cable, exterior maintenance, lawn care, scavenger, snow removal)
  • Taxes are included in HOA
  • Parking is $20 a month in private lot
  • No central air
  • No washer/dryer in the unit
  • Bedroom #1: 17×12
  • Bedroom #2: 17×12
  • Bedroom #3: 12×9
  • Dining room: 17×13

Is Now the Time to Buy? $26,000 Reduction on this Lincoln Park 2/2: 630 W. Wrightwood


This 2-bedroom at 630 W. Wrightwood in Lincoln Park came on the market in June 2016.

Built in 1996, there are 40 units.

Similar buildings were built on both sides of the street on this stretch of Wrightwood.

This is an elevator building with garage parking and a common rooftop deck.

This unit has an extra wide living room along with crown moldings, built-in bookshelves and a gas fireplace.

It has French doors with a Juliet balcony.

The kitchen has white cabinets, stainless steel appliances and granite counter tops.

It has the other features buyers look for including central air and rare full-size washer/dryer.

At 1800 square feet, this unit is bigger than many townhomes in that neighborhood.

This unit was under contract in July. The listing says a home contingency fell through. It has recently been re-painted in Revere Pewter, the most popular paint color in America.

Originally listed for $585,000, it has been reduced $26,000 to $559,000.

Is this unit now a deal?

David Lutman at Conlon has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #3W: 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1800 square feet

  • Sold in October 1996 for $279,000
  • Sold in March 1998 for $335,000
  • Originally listed in June 2016 for $585,000
  • Under contract in July 2016
  • Re-listed
  • Reduced several times
  • Currently listed for $559,000
  • Assessments of $339 a month (includes exterior maintenance, lawn care and scavenger)
  • Taxes of $7442
  • Central Air
  • Full-size washer/dryer
  • Garage parking included
  • Bedroom #1: 20×14
  • Bedroom #2: 12×11

Full Floor Living Instead of a Single Family Home: 1142 S. Michigan Overlooking Grant Park


This full floor unit in 1142 S. Michigan overlooking Grant Park in the South Loop came on the market in September 2016.

This boutique building was converted into condos in 2000 and has just 8 units, with a heated attached garage.

It has high ceilings and crown molding along with 2 fireplaces.

The listing says it has a “state of the art” kitchen with white cabinets, luxury stainless steel appliances and a blue kitchen island with white stone counter tops.

This unit has all the features condo buyers look for including central air, washer/dryer in an actual laundry room and 1-car parking.

I don’t believe the building has any amenities or a doorman.

But this unit does have unobstructed east views of Grant Park and several exposures.

Is this a good single family home alternative?

Randy McGhee at @Properties has the listing. See the pictures and floor plan here.

Unit #2AB: 4 bedrooms, 3.5 baths, no square footage listed

  • Sold in July 2000 for $840,000
  • Originally listed in September 2016 for $1.475 million
  • Still listed for $1.475 million
  • Assessments of $1725 a month (includes snow removal)
  • Taxes of $18625
  • Central Air
  • Washer/dryer in the unit
  • 1-car heated garage parking included
  • Bedroom #1: 19×15
  • Bedroom #2: 18×15
  • Bedroom #3: 20×11
  • Bedroom #4: 10×15