After hitting a record low in the last week of February, mortgage rates on a 30 year fixed mortgage rose slightly this week, according to Freddie Mac. You may ask yourself why this happened, considering that the Fed lowered the prime lending rate to practically zero. Apparently, a combination of an increase of rates in the bond market and an increased demand for refinancing contributed to the increase. Meanwhile, the continued spread of COVID-19 is changing the way real estate business is conducted. Even though real estate is listed as an "essential business" under the Governor's shelter-in-place order, agents must follow the CDC guidelines as public health must be the highest priority. Therefore, no open houses should be held and private showings must be very controlled as to the number of visitors.
Market Snapshot - City of Chicago
*The city of Chicago Market Snapshot represents the residential real estate activity within the 77 officially defined Chicago community areas as provided by the Chicago Association of REALTORS*
In February, 1,483 residential properties were sold in Chicago. This is a 2.3% increase from February 2019.
The median sales price was $289,950, up 6.4% from the same time last year.
Average listing time on the market until contract was 105 days, a 2.8% decrease from February 2019.
These numbers indicate that the market was stronger than last year. The market was heading to a very active spring selling season.
State Of The Market
As we progressed through February, the actual and expected impact of COVID-19 continued to grow, with concerns of economic impact reaching the stock market in the last week of the month. The situation became worse in the first half of March.
The January ShowingTime Showing Index saw a 20.2% increase in showing traffic nationwide, year-to-year. All regions in the country were up double digits from the year before, with the Midwest region up 15.7%. Showing traffic is a leading indicator for future home sales signaling that the 2020 housing market was off to a strong start.
In February, the city of Chicago's inventory was down 9.2% from February 2019.
All information provided by Chicago Association of REALTORS
Here are the February 2020 statistics for some selected neighborhoods
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