Downtown condo market heats up as city reopens

A combination of lifted restrictions and high prices in the suburbs are pushing buyers back downtown

Chicago /
Jun.June 15, 2021 03:30 PM
Downtown buyers also enter a revitalizing urban core, as Chicago has entered the final phase of the state’s reopening plan. (iStock)

Downtown buyers also enter a revitalizing urban core, as Chicago has entered the final phase of the state’s reopening plan. (iStock)

Downtown Chicago’s condo market is as hot as the weather these days, as buyers return to the reopening city.

Condos missed out on the homebuying bonanza that pushed up prices in the suburbs, but now demand is returning to the city and especially the downtown condo market, Crain’s reported.

“People see these prices and they come,” Michael Rosenblum, an agent at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Chicago, told Crain’s. Prices haven’t dipped this low since 2009 or 2010, according to Rosenblum, who recently represented the buyers of a three-bedroom condo in Garland Court. The apartment sold for $813,000, more than 10 percent less than its sellers spent on it five years ago.

While buyers aiming for a suburban home routinely compete against multiple, above-asking-price offers, the condo market remains relatively less cutthroat, Larissa Brodsky, a Baird & Warner agent, told Crain’s.

Downtown buyers also enter a revitalizing urban core, as Chicago has entered the final phase of the state’s reopening plan and Mayor Lori Lightfoot called Chicago “the largest big city in the country that’s fully reopened.”

The downtown condo market is even gaining traction among committed suburbanites, according to the report. As offices transition from fully remote to hybrid workplaces, some buyers are seeking “crash pads” for the few nights a week they have to come into the office.

Iulia Ilie, an analyst at CME Group, recently bought a condo in South Loop, a two-bedroom for $385,000. That’s $15,000 more than the same floor plan in winter, she told Crain’s. In the past several months, “it was a ghost town down here,” said Ilie. Not anymore.

[Crain’s] — Joe Lovinger






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