The Market Report: Chicago's Neighborhoods | March 2019

In addition to the quandary of ongoing housing price increases and affordability concerns in many U.S. markets, the first quarter of 2019 saw a fair share of adverse weather as well. Sales totals were mixed across the nation and sometimes dependent on what was a persistent wintry mix, especially in the Great Plains, Midwest and Northeast. Meanwhile, new listings and total homes for sale have been trending lower in year-over-year comparisons in many areas, and last year's marks were already quite low.

New Listings in the City of Chicago increased 0.6 percent to 5,364. Listings Under Contract were down 6.8 percent to 2,942. Inventory levels rose 1.7 percent to 8,376 units. Prices were a tad soft. The Median Sales Price decreased 6.0 percent to $292,000. Market Times were up 4.5 percent to 102 days. Buyers felt empowered as Months Supply of Inventory was up 5.7 percent to 3.7 months.

The Federal Reserve recently announced that no further interest rate hikes are planned for 2019. Given the fact that the federal funds rate has increased nine times over the past three years, this was welcome news for U.S. consumers, which carry an approximate average of $6,000 in revolving credit card debt per household. Fed actions also tend to affect mortgage rates, so the pause in rate hikes was also welcome news to the residential real estate industry.