This January we had 22 closed sales for single family homes in Winneta, Kenilworth, and Glencoe. After checking that statistic, I asked my husband how many homes he thought sold during the same period last year (January 2008.) He answered 60. You would have thought so, but . . . exactly the same number sold last year as this: 22.
Now let's look behind the numbers.
January 2009 Closed Sales (22)
High price: $5,299,000 Sold price: $5,000,000 (841 days on market, 94% of list)
Low price: $379,900 Sold price: $375,000 (172 days on market, 98.6% of list)
Average price: $1,337,430 Sold price: $1,217,731 (105 days on market, 91% of list)
Median price: $998,250 Sold price: $902,500 (101 days on market, 90% of list)
January 2008 Closed Sales (22)
High Price: $3,999,999 Sold price: $3,500,000 (647 days on market, 87% of list)
Low Price: $477,000 Sold price: $425,000 (51 days on market, 89% of list)
Average price: $1,406,541 Sold price: $1,274,389 (136 days on market, 90.6% of list)
Median price: $1,434,500 Sold price: $1,275,000 (116 days on market, 89% of list)
So it seems that houses that sold this year actually sold for a higher percentage of their list price than they did a year earlier. How could this be?
One explanation could be that houses this year had come down so far in price that sellers were not negotiating too much lower when they received offers, hence the higher percentage of list price. But across the price spectrum, properties were on the market for a longer period of time this year over last.
So sellers will come down in price, but apparently there are limits and they're willing to wait it out. Buyers are also waiting it out - hoping to jump in right at the very bottom, just before prices begin to bottom out or even rise.
If President Obama's stimulus package passes, one amendment could make a difference: a $15,000 tax credit for all homebuyers of primary properties. This could be just the shot-in-the-arm that the housing industry needs to pick up again and get going. I'm not for pork, but I welcome this addition to the bill!