Real Estate

Buying a house in Chicago is finally easier — but not cheaper

Data: Freddie Mac; Chart: Madison Dong/Axios Visuals

The Chicago metro area's real estate market is starting to level off, writes Axios' Sami Sparber.

Why it matters: After two-plus years of plummeting inventory and sky-high home prices, buyers have waited a long time for a little relief.

Monica Eng
Nov 7, 2022 - News

Charted: Rent prices starting to drop in Chicago

chicago skyline behind lake michigan

Chicago skyline in October 2022. Photo: Vincent D. Johnson/Xinhua via Getty Images

Although local rents are finally falling year over year, apartments downtown and the near North Side remain expensive, according to Redfin network listings.

Zoom in: Current rental prices for a 2-bedroom apartment in the city range from $4,500 in River North to $950 on the Southeast Side.

Housing coming to LaSalle Street

Data: Kastle; Chart: Erin Davis/Axios Visuals

Expressway traffic, lunchtime lines and downtown congestion might make you think that Loop office occupancy has returned to 2019 levels.

Reality check: It's probably not even close.

Sami Sparber
Sep 7, 2022 - Business

Chicago loves live-work-play apartments

Illustration of an office cubicle with a roof like a house.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

A total of 11,500 mixed-use apartments have been built in Chicago since 2012, Axios' Sami Sarber reports.

Why it matters: Rental communities that comprise residential, office and retail space gained a foothold in the last decade, especially as the pandemic heightened renters' preference for nearby amenities.

Housing outpaces income in Chicago

Data: Redfin analysis of HMDA data; Chart: Kavya Beheraj and Skye Witley/Axios

Remote workers drove up local home prices, a new Redfin study finds.

Why it matters: Free to work from home, white-collar workers relocated during the pandemic, using their higher salaries to buy cheaper homes, which has elevated housing prices.

Chicago's real estate market is slightly shifting

Illustration of a downward trend line over a house

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

With pending home sales down 15.8% year over year, Chicago's real estate market is showing early signs of slowing down. But median home prices are still up 4.8% from May 2021.

Why it matters: Despite predictions of a market crash, so far, local data doesn't support the idea.

Chicago homebuilding lags behind other large metros

Illustration of a construction crane hook with a downward arrow instead of a hook.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

Chicago ranks in the bottom five nationally when it comes to building new homes, per the latest analysis by real estate company Redfin.

What they found: Chicago had 2.3 single-family building permits per 10,000 people in the first quarter of this year.

Chicagoans need to make more money to buy a home

Illustration of a gold-plated house-for-sale sign.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

Chicagoans have to earn 18.2% more than they did a year ago to afford our region's median-value home.

The big picture: The income needed to afford a home has soared nationally as limited inventory and strong demand have steadily driven sale prices higher.

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