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Methods and Sources

These charts were prepared using data supplied by the Multiple Listing Service of Northern Illinois (MLSNI), which lists many of the houses and condominiums put up for sale in the Chicago area. In addition to charting home prices in the 77 Chicago community areas recognized by the U.S. Census Bureau, we have also tracked sales in most towns in Cook, DuPage, and Lake counties where figures were available. For the outlying counties—Kane, McHenry, and Will—we have listed a number of representative towns. There are two anomalies: In Cook County, the town listed as Barrington on the chart also includes Barrington Hills, Deer Park, Lake Barrington, North Barrington, South Barrington, and Tower Lakes. In Lake County, the town listed as Round Lake also includes Round Lake Beach, Round Lake Heights, and Round Lake Park.

The first column on each chart lists the average sale price for all the houses sold in each neighborhood or suburb from July 1, 2004, to June 30, 2005. (Obviously, if only a handful of houses were sold in a particular community, the average sale price risks being unrepresentative.) Average sale prices for the Chicago suburbs are based upon the sale of single-family homes, what the MLSNI classifies as “detached” housing. For Chicago, where a sizable portion of the housing stock is composed of townhouses, condos, and lofts—called “attached” housing by the MLSNI—we have also included average sale prices and number of sales for attached homes during the same period.

The second column reports the average number of days that houses remained on the market before they were sold, which can be an indicator of an area’s desirability. The third column lists the number of house sales within each community from July 1, 2004, to June 30, 2005.

The fourth column reports the percentage of increase or decrease in average sale price since the 12-month period beginning July 1, 1993, and ending June 30, 1994, the earliest date for which the MLSNI has comprehensive data available for most of the city’s neighborhoods and suburbs. In Albany Park, for example, the average sale price 11 years ago was $134,203; this past year, it was $398,598, an increase of 197.01 percent.

The fifth column represents the percentage of increase or decrease in average sale price since the 12-month period beginning July 1, 2003, and ending June 30, 2004.

In some instances, where data was insufficient or unavailable, we have inserted the symbol “N/A” (not available, or not applicable). Specifically, for city neighborhoods and suburbs—such as Armour Square and Mettawa—that had fewer than ten house sales during the 2004-2005 time period, we have listed no percentage change since 1994 or 2004 because the available data provided an insufficient basis for comparison between past and present sales.

About the Multiple Listing Service of Northern Illinois

Established in 1989, the Multiple Listing Service of Northern Illinois is one of the largest multiple listing services in the world, with more than 75,000 active real-estate listings, 1.75 million off-market listings, nearly 500,000 file photos, and four million tax records for eight northern Illinois counties (the six counties in our article plus Grundy and Kendall counties). Owned by ten local real-estate associations, made up of 45,000 members, MLSNI and its computerized database help real-estate agents and brokers better serve their clients, whether they are buying or selling a home.

Can It Last - Introduction

Charts - Chicago Detached Housing

Charts - Chicago Townhomes, Condos, etc.

Charts - Suburbs (Addison to Elmwood Park)

Charts - Suburbs (Evanston to Libertyville)

Charts - Suburbs (Lincolnshire to Richton Park)

Charts - Suburbs (Riverdale to Zion)

Can it Last? - Methods and Sources

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