Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Chicago Downtown Construction Frenzy

From the Realtor Magazine Online:

Chicago Downtown Construction Frenzy

(June 14, 2005) -- More than 8,400 new residences will be added to Chicago's downtown in 2005—the most ever added in a single year.

This comes on top of the 43,000 new units added between 1990 and 2004, according to a recent report by Appraisal Research Counselors in Chicago.

"We have been a bit surprised by the demand for new units," says Gail Lissner, vice president of Appraisal Research. Also somewhat surprising to Lissner has been the recent velocity of home sales. About 2,500 units sold during the first quarter—an 80 percent increase over first quarter sales in 2004 and 50 percent greater than the first quarter record (5,625 units) set in the year 2000.

If the pattern continues, 10,000 condominiums could be sold downtown this year. Lissner attributes strong sales to the overall favorable climate for real estate and renewed interest in living downtown.
The Chicago housing market has had reasonable appreciation in recent years (6.7% last year). Yet it has not had the double digit apprecaition seen in many metropolitan areas. Chicago, being the largest city in the Midwest, is representative of the region's moderate housing appreciation rate. Also, downtown Chicago rocks. I highly recommend it. It has the second most vibrant downtown in the nation (after NYC). However, Chicago's downtown is much more consolidated then NYC (NYC has the financial district and Midtown).


  1. it may rock but can the prices hold up when rents dont even come close to covering costs and 25%of 8500 are trying to rent units all at the same time. the numbers dont work and there will be a shakeout

  2. Chicago is likely to see price declines in housing prices. Why? Once the housing bubble pops in other markets the recession will affect everyone. Price declines will follow.

  3. Just about to leave my Loop office to get back to my apartment on the North Side.
    Just finding it hard to understand how so much new construction and conversions of old office buildings in the Loop can be sustained.
    Where are the folks that are going to come up with the $400,000 for a Loop condo?
    Course, I don't see how the 3 houses and 4 new condo units on my block on the North Side are going to sell either. Two of the houses are new and they want 1.3 million each for them.

  4. in response to David - a poster on another board responds to this with:

    "You're only affected if you're buying or selling during a recession. If you hold on to what you've got and ride it out, most likely you'll be fine."