As home sales slump, sellers ask, ‘Where are the buyers?’

As home sales slump, sellers ask, ‘Where are the buyers?’

Loop North News  

The Home Front

As home sales slump, sellers ask, ‘Where are the buyers?’

(Above) Hopefully stimulating the market for swank Gold Coast mansions, this home at 1316 North Dearborn Street will be auctioned on December 3. The owners spent $6.9 million to buy and remodel the 6,500 square foot home. RE/MAX Premier Properties has partnered with auctioneer Rick Levin and they expect three or four bidders. The minimum bid is $3.35 million.

27-Oct-19 – With a shortage of buyers touring listings this summer, many Chicago home sellers were left scratching their heads as the market for single-family homes slumped in several North Side neighborhoods, experts say.

Total third-quarter home sales activity increased only in Lincoln Park, where it gained 11.1 percent, and was unchanged in Rogers Park, according to the quarterly Chicago North Side Market Report prepared by Realtor Mary Jo Nathan of Compass.

The report tracks home sales in Edgewater, Lakeview, Lincoln Park, Lincoln Square, Near North Side, North Center, Rogers Park, Uptown, and West Ridge.

Seven communities posted declines in home sales activity ranging from a whopping 22 percent decline in Edgewater to a 3.8 percent decline on the Near North Side. Other results were minus 16.2 percent in Lakeview, minus 12.9 percent in North Center, minus 8.8 percent in Uptown, minus 7.3 percent in West Ridge, and minus 4.6 percent in Lincoln Square.

There were 2,640 home sales in the nine community areas that make up the North Side during the July-September quarter, down 7.4 percent from the total posted a year earlier but better than the 7.6 percent decline in the second quarter.

The median sales price of homes, townhouses, and condominiums rose only 0.9 percent to $355,000, slightly up from the 0.7 percent increase for the second quarter.

Median single-family detached home prices ranged from a low of $345,000 in West Ridge and $545,660 in Rogers Park to $725,000 in Lincoln Square, $747,500 in Edgewater, and $950,625 in Uptown.

In luxury neighborhoods, median detached home prices ranged from $1,082,500 in North Center and $1,232,500 in Lakeview to $1,075,000 on the Near North Side and $1.6 million in Lincoln Park.


“While total third quarter sales effectively tracked those of the second quarter, there were some changes worth noting,” said Nathan (left), who is affiliated with the Charese David Team based at 2044 West Roscoe Street. “Although the single-family sales activity led the market in the second quarter, attached home sales were the stronger component of third-quarter results.”

The sales data cited by Compass is collected by Midwest Real Estate Data, LLC, the regional multiple listing service.

Most homes sold on North Side in 3Q were condo units

Attached residences, primarily condominiums and townhouses, accounted for 89.7 percent of all home sales on the North Side during the third quarter. Attached sales totaled 2,367 units, down 6.8 percent from the same period in 2018, while the median price gained 2.8 percent to $330,000.

Condo and townhouse listings sat on the market an average of 72 days before finding a buyer, 14 days longer than the same period last year. Average market time increased to some extent in all nine community areas, topped by a 20-day increase in Lincoln Park, the only neighborhood to post an actual increase in attached sales, gaining 12.6 percent to 358 units.

Attached sales rose 6.4 percent in Lincoln Square (right) to 100 units.


The eight other communities all saw declines in attached sales compared with the same quarter in 2018. Sales were off 0.7 percent in Rogers Park, 3.1 percent on the Near North Side, 6.5 percent in West Ridge, 8.7 percent in Uptown, 15 percent in Lakeview, 22 percent in Edgewater, and 22.7 percent in North Center.

The median condo and townhouse sales prices rose in five areas – 20.6 percent in Edgewater, 7.3 percent in Uptown, 3.2 percent in North Center, 1.9 percent in Lakeview, and 1.2 percent in Lincoln Square. Elsewhere, the median price fell 11.2 percent in Lincoln Park, 5.3 percent in West Ridge, 5.1 percent in Rogers Park and 3.7 percent on the Near North Side.

North Side single-family homes in a slump

Third-quarter sales of detached single-family homes on the North Side were down 12.8 percent compared to the same period last year, while the median sales price for this segment rose 5.4 percent to $988,237. Average market time declined by one day to 101 days. Nathan said that reflects the shortage of moderately priced inventory across the North Side.

Sales activity rose in three neighborhoods – 10 percent in Rogers Park, 4.5 percent in North Center, and 2 percent in Lincoln Park. Among the six communities where sales activity fell, four had declines of more than 20 percent...

  • Near North – down 55.6 percent
  • Lincoln Square – down 32.4 percent
  • Lakeview – down 28.8 percent
  • Edgewater – down 21.4 percent
Northcenter Neighborhood Association

Sales also were off 10 percent in Uptown and 9.3 percent in West Ridge.

(Left) Two-flats in the Chicago neighborhood of North Center.

Median prices also showed a wide variation in performance – though five communities had increases, including gains of 48.9 percent in Rogers Park, 28.5 percent in Uptown, 15.6 percent in Lincoln Square, 2.4 percent in North Center, and 0.3 percent in Edgewater.

The median price in Lincoln Park was unchanged at $1.6 million, while the median was off 4.2 percent in West Ridge, 8.7 percent in Lakeview, and an amazing 58.4 percent on the Near North Side.

“The big price decline on the Near North Side reflects the fact that only four homes sold there during the third quarter and all were outside the Gold Coast portion of that community, where sales prices for detached homes are typically well over $1 million and often are multiples of that number,” Nathan explained.

By Don DeBat | Loop North News |

Published 27-Oct-19 2:42 AM