It's always revealing to prepare a year-end market report and see if my hunches throughout the year were correct. The North Shore communities of Winnetka, Wilmette, Kenilworth, Northfield, and Glencoe are still firmly in a buyer's market because of high inventory and long market times.
I cannot do an absorption rate analysis today because so many homes have been removed from the market for the holidays. The last report I did on this was in May of 2016 and all villages except Wilmette were solidly in a buyer's market mode.
Here is a comparison of homes sales in 2015 vs 2016:
Winnetka, Wilmette, and Kenilworth all had a higher number of home sales but prices dropped slightly. In Northfield and Glencoe, homes sales were down in 2016 but prices rose. The most notable change would be found in Kenilworth where the average sale price dropped from $1,800,000 to $1,436,000 (a chilling 20% drop in price.) There were fewer overall sales which would have affected this number negatively, but even so, the drop is substantial.
Essentially, prices dropped in all villages except Northfield:
Market time was also increased except in Northfield where it stayed flat.
So where are the buyers? Many younger families are opting to stay in the city and raise their children in an urban environment. The ones that are moving out are commonly not interested in restoring older homes. They've bought and lived in newer condos and townhomes in the city and are searching for that same feel. But with a housing stock that is primarly older, our homes are destined to take longer to sell.
Our big draws are still excellent schools, easy downtown transportation, proximity to the lake, leafy suburbs with sidewalks, and a healthy cultural and dining scene plus many outdoor recreational opportunities.
Housing reports on the national scene should not be regarded by North Shore residents. Most sources report that prices will continue to rise and the inventory shortage might ease up a bit. Those are not our issues! However, just based on knowing what business I'll be doing this year, I predict that 2017 will see more home sales with prices remaining at current levels or rising slightly.
If you would like to consult with me regarding buying or selling a home in the North Shore communities of Winnetka, Wilmette, Kenilworth, Northfield, or Glencoe, please give me a call!