Suburban Chicago home supply dips under one month

Sellers have all the leverage, buyers need to sweeten deals

Jim Regan, an agent for Remax Suburban in Mount Prospect (ReMax, iStock, Photo illustration by Priyanka Modi)
Jim Regan, an agent for Remax Suburban in Mount Prospect (ReMax, iStock, Photo illustration by Priyanka Modi)

There’s no place to call home.

The extent of the available single-family home shortage in Chicago’s suburbs has left realtors shocked and buyers frustrated. Supply has fallen from a healthy level of four to six months to less than one month, according to the Chicago Daily Herald.

“There are so few homes on the market that pretty much every seller of a clean, updated home can now expect multiple offers and will probably get as much as $20,000 over asking price,” Jim Regan, an agent for Remax Suburban in Mount Prospect, told the Herald.

At the heart of the shortage is a mismatch between supply and demand. Most older buyers are looking for ranch homes and houses with first-floor master suites, while developers are building traditional two-story homes because they’re cheaper to make, said Lynn Klein, broker/owner of Century 21 New Heritage with offices in Hampshire, West Dundee, Marengo and Huntley.

Jim Barcelona, vice president of brokerage services for @properties, said sellers should enter the market right now, even if they don’t want to move until summer.

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“If you don’t want to close until after school is out, you have the leverage to say that to your buyer,” he told the Herald.

Buyers need to have a strong pre-approval letter from their lender and should make an immediate offer on any home they like, Barcelona said. They should also have a good understanding of the average market time and the ratio of list price to sale price.

“Be prepared to be disappointed,” he said. “Don’t lowball.”

Buyers can also sweeten their offers by allowing the seller to rent the home back for a time, or even let them stay rent free.
“World events will eventually change things — like the stock market, interest rates or the Russia-Ukraine conflict,” he said. “But it could take three months or three years. Who knows?”

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[Daily Herald] — Harrison Connery