Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Chicago Real Estate: Reasons to be Hopeful

These stats were sent to me from Rubloff....Thanks!

Existing home sales were up nationally 7.2% in July over June and up 4% in the Chicago Metropolitan area for the same period. Even more positive is the fact that home sales in the Chicago area inched up 0.3% in July 2009 versus July 2008, the first year on year increase since March of 2006. Existing home sales in Chicago have been up month over month for six consecutive months!

New home sales were up nationally 9.6% in July over June, and up for the fourth straight month in a row. It is important that we are seeing month over month increases because that indicates a trend upward.

Home prices are up nationally 2.9% in the second quarter of 2009 versus the first quarter and up 1.1% for the same period in the Chicago metropolitan area. This is the first quarterly price rise in three years, indicating a bottom may have been reached.

The inventory of for sale homes is decreasing. The Monthly Supply of Inventory is 9.1 months, down from the high of 22.3 months in December of 2008. The number of for sale homes is down 16% from July of 2008, from 32,151 units to 26,946 units in July of 2009.

The number of homes in the Chicago area that went under contract in July 2009 was 2,335 units, or 23% higher than the 1,900 units under contract in July of 2008.

The average days on market in Chicago have decreased 8% since January from 170 DOM to 157 DOM in July.

Consumer confidence rose in July to 54.1 from 47.4. While a score of 90+ indicates solid growth, an increase in this all important “soft” statistic is amazing given the poor job situation. Consumer spending represents about 70% of the overall Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the US. A sustainable upward trend in consumer spending will signal the recession is coming to a close.

The Conference Board reports their Index of Leading Economic Indicators is up in July 0.6% after a 0.8% increase in June. "The indicators suggest that the recession is bottoming out, and that economic activity will likely begin recovering soon," said Ken Goldstein, economist at The Conference Board.
Durable goods orders were up in July an unexpected 4.9%. This was the biggest gain in two years. Durable goods orders represent a leading indicator of the health of the manufacturing sector.