chicago-condos & Chicago Real Estate pcherry on 16 Feb 2010 01:41 pm

Record Low Chicago Condo Sales For 2009

February 16, 2010 - The latest news from Appraisal Research Counselors that the downtown Chicago condo market has posted significant losses for two years in a row. The total number of condos and townhomes sold last year was only 572. The number of total sales for 2008 was 592. The average yearly sales before the housing market slowdown had been about 4,000 units.

In a recent Sun Times article, ARC was quoted as saying that 2009 was the lowest year for sales since they had started keeping records back in 1997. The report also stated that plans to construct 1,041 units were canceled by developers of Chicago real estate mostly because of a lack of buyers.

The article went on to say that developers who market their buildings to first-time buyers are having the most sales when prices are set at around $290 per square foot. About two years ago that would have been $390 per square foot.

Some other interesting numbers include that while there were only 572 new units sold last year, there were 1,900 closings. That was due to pre-construction contracts that were made more than a year ago in projects that just started making deliveries this past year.

According to ARC and the article, 15 new buildings that started making deliveries in 2009 have claimed 67% total sales. And when ARC polled 40 large scale condo high-rises on the North Side and downtown it found that average prices dropped 10% from 2008 to 2009.

Of the six condo towers with a total of 1,200 units set to deliver in 2010, only one has 54% under contract. Those towers include Walton on the Park and One Museum Park West.

With so many developers concentrating on rental projects instead of Chicago condo towers, the glut of surplus inventory should start to decrease and help firm up the Chicago real estate market over time.

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