Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Chicago Real Estate

(Crain's) — A closely watched index of local home prices fell sharply in March for the second straight month, hitting its lowest level in 12 years.
The Standard & Poor's Case-Shiller index of Chicago-area single-family home prices fell 2.5 percent from February to March and was down 7.1 percent from the year-earlier level, according to a report released Tuesday. Prices here also fell 2.5 percent from January to February and have dropped for seven straight months.
The local price level had not been lower since March 2000, according to S&P Case-Shiller data. The level was almost identical to April 2000.
A 20-city composite price index was flat in March and down 2.6 percent from the year-earlier level, according to the report. But prices rose on a month-over-month basis in 12 out of the 20 metropolitan areas tracked by S&P.
“While there has been improvement in some regions, housing prices have not turned,” David M. Blitzer, chairman of the index committee at S&P Indices, saidin the report. “This month's report saw all three composites and five cities hit new lows. However, with last month's report nine cities hit new lows. Further, about half as many cities, seven, experienced falling prices this month compared to 16 last time."
The Chicago-area index is down about 39 percent from its peak in September 2006.
A separate Case-Shiller index of Chicago-area condominium prices fell 0.3 percent from February to March, and was down 5.1 percent from a year earlier. The condo index has fallen 39.5 percent from its peak in September 2007.
If there is any good news, it's that most sellers are no longer in denial about the value of their homes. And homes priced realistically are attracting plenty of attention.

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