Jon Broadbooks

Chicago home sales surge on last day of February; last-minute transactions
add to already reported strong February gains in Illinois

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — A surge of activity on Leap Day drove home sales to even higher levels in the state, according to data collected by the Illinois Association of REALTORS®.

The association released numbers on March 21 for a 28-day period, which provides a comparison with last year’s 28-day February reporting period. Those numbers showed that for the 28-day period home sales (including single-family and condominium sales) increased 15.1 percent from 5,634 homes sold in February 2011 to 6,487 homes sold in February 2012.

The data released Wednesday did not include Feb. 29 closed sales due to a reporting error that affected statistics for the nine-county Chicago PMSA. Adjusting for Leap Day, the data show more than 500 closings were recorded on Feb. 29, with statewide home sales increasing 25.4 percent, from 5,634 sales in February 2011 to 7,067 sales in February 2012.

For the 28-day period in February 2012, comparable to February 2011, IAR found home sales in the Chicago PMSA increased 14.8 percent from 3,769 homes in February 2011 to 4,325 homes in 2012. Adding in Leap Day, home sales in Chicagoland increased 29.6 percent, from 3,769 in February 2011 to 4,884 in February 2012.

In the city of Chicago, home sales rose 2.2 percent for the 28-day comparable period, from 1,056 homes in February 2011 to 1,079 homes in 2012. Adding in Feb. 29 numbers, home sales increased 16.6 percent, from 1,056 homes sold in February 2011 to 1,231 homes sold in February 2012.

Median prices

Median prices for Illinois home sales for the 28-day comparable period were $117,000, down 8.2 percent from the $127,500 reported for February 20011. Factoring in Leap Day sales, the state saw a 6.8 percent decrease in median prices, from $127,500 in February 2011 to $118,800 in February 2012.

In the Chicago PMSA, the median price remained unchanged when Leap Day was factored in. The median price of a home fell 11.5 percent in the Chicago PMSA from $152,500 to $135,000 in February 2012.

In the city of Chicago the 28-day calculation showed a 6.7 percent decrease in median prices, from $150,000 in February 2011 to $140,000 last month. Factoring in Feb. 29 data the city saw median prices fall from $150,000 to $140,100, or down 6.6 percent.

Sales and price information is generated by Multiple Listing Service closed sales reported by 31 participating Illinois REALTOR® local boards and associations including Midwest Real Estate Data LLC as of March 21, 2012 for the period Feb. 1 through Feb. 29, 2012. The Chicago PMSA, as defined by the U.S. Census includes the counties of Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry and Will.

The Illinois Association of REALTORS® is a voluntary trade association whose 41,000 members are engaged in all facets of the real estate industry. In addition to serving the professional needs of its members, the association works to protect the rights of private property owners in the state by recommending and promoting legislation that safeguards and advances the interest of real property ownership.

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