The spring 2020 housing market was heading into a strong season before the coronavirus began spreading across the United States. With mounting uncertainty and the eventual stay-at-home order in place, would-be sellers halted their plans to sell and others paused their existing listings, both waiting and watching the market.
Compared to last April, the number of homes for sale is down 19.5%, However, this decrease is setting the perfect stage for sellers– fewer homes on the market means less competition and more traffic to each listing. The sellers who stayed on course are now reaping returns. With rates at historic lows, buyers are being coaxed out of quarantine to spring on these home opportunities and secure their record-breaking financing.
While the number of homes sold since March predictably plunged, the median sale prices rose across the city and suburbs. On a national level, the median listing price in the United States was up 1.4% year-over-year as of May 9, with sale prices growing 7.4% as compared to a year ago.
With multiple buyers vying for the same homes, sellers are seeing 7.7% shorter market times and multiple offers. The metropolitan area has seen a 6.7% jump in home price while Chicago is up 9.5%. This is the second largest year-over-year increase in home prices of any month since February 2018.
“We’re beginning to see a fuller picture of COVID-19’s effect on the housing market,” said Maurice Hampton, president of the Chicago Association of REALTORS®. “While closed sales are down 22.2 percent, demand is still there—although constrained by inventory—as the median sales price ticked up and days on the market declined. While the process may have changed, the need to transact real estate hasn’t with 2,018 closed sales in the city of Chicago last month.”We expect to see the benefit of low inventory continue to create favorable returns for sellers while we wait for other industries to open and operate more freely.