SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — The Illinois housing market in February continued to outpace the year before with increases in both home sales and median prices despite lower inventory, data from Illinois REALTORS® shows.

Statewide home sales (including single-family homes and condominiums) in February totaled 8,725 homes sold, up 5.0 percent from 8,307 in February 2019.

The statewide median price in February was $199,000, up 7.0 percent from February 2019, when the median price was $186,000. The median is a typical market price where half the homes sold for more and half sold for less.

“The Illinois housing market continued to make solid gains in February with increases in home sales and median prices,” said Ed Neaves, president of Illinois REALTORS® and designated managing broker of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Snyder Real Estate in Bloomington. “That said, the real estate industry will be monitoring the impact of COVID-19 as consumers and REALTORS® take public safety precautions during this time.”

The time it took to sell a home in January averaged 68 days, unchanged from the year before. Available inventory totaled 45,653 homes for sale, an 8.5 percent decline from 49,916 homes in February 2019.

According to the data, home sales in the Rockford MSA (Boone and Winnebago counties) totaled 279 units, a 15.8 percent increase while the median price was up 2.0 percent to $119,900; home sales in the Moline-Rock Island MSA (Henry, Mercer and Rock Island counties) totaled 135, a 4.7 percent increase while the median price increased 3.8 percent to $96,500.

The monthly average commitment rate for a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage was 3.47 percent in
February, a decrease from 3.62 percent the previous month, according to the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. In February 2019, it averaged 4.37 percent.

In the nine-county Chicago Metro Area, home sales (single-family and condominiums) in February totaled 6,057, up 6.6 percent from February 2019 sales of 5,680 homes. The median price in February was $240,000 in the Chicago Metro Area, an increase of 4.3 percent from $230,000 in February 2019.

“The forecasts were prepared using data prior to the stock market meltdown and the increased concern about the impact of the COVID-19 virus pandemic,” said Geoffrey J.D. Hewings, director of the Regional Economics Applications Laboratory at the University of Illinois. “Absent these events, the housing market would have continued its slow but steady rebound. In times past, consumers have become very risk averse when faced with uncertainties about the economy. The difference with the current crisis is the limitations on interactions and fear of infection. This may prove to have a very significant impact on the housing market over the next two to three months.”

The city of Chicago saw year-over-year home sales increase 1.6 percent with 1,472 sales in February, compared to 1,449 a year ago. The median price of a home in the city of Chicago in February was $290,000 up 6.4 percent compared to February 2019 when it was $272,500.

“As we ease into what should have been the beginning of the spring home buying and selling season, the data reflects that consumers are being deliberate in their spending,” said Maurice Hampton, president of the Chicago Association of REALTORS® and owner of Centered International Realty. “Median sales are on the up while inventory and days on the market both declined, showing that buyers are active in their search.”

Sales and price information are generated by Multiple Listing Service closed sales reported by 26 participating Illinois REALTORS® local boards and associations including Midwest Real Estate Data LLC data as of March 7, 2020 for the period Feb. 1 through Feb. 29, 2020. The Chicago Metro Area, as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau, includes the counties of Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry and Will.

Illinois REALTORS® is a voluntary trade association whose more than 50,000 members are engaged in all facets of the real estate industry. In addition to serving the professional needs of its members, Illinois REALTORS® works to protect the rights of private property owners in the state by recommending and promoting legislation to safeguard and advance the interest of real property ownership.

Find Illinois housing stats, data and the University of Illinois REAL forecast at www.IllinoisRealtors.org/MarketStats.