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Chicago’s pending home sales bring some good news to home sellers

I remember when every post on this blog detailed another sign that the housing market was suffering through a deep decline. That’s changed. Now it seems as if every post is covering new evidence that the U.S. housing market is firmly in recovery mode.

The latest bit of evidence comes courtesy of an Associated Press story that ran recently in the Chicago Sun-Times. According to the story, U.S. pending home sales have risen to their highest point since 2010.

The Pending Home Sales Index is an important one. It charts the number of U.S. residents who have signed contracts to purchase homes. Because of this, it’s the top indicator of future real estate activity.

When pending home sales are on the rise, it indicates that the sales of existing homes will continue to rise, too, in the near future.

According to the National Association of REALTORS®, its seasonally adjusted index for pending home sales shot up 4.5% in January to 105.9. That 105.9 figure isn’t that important. What is important is that the figure is the highest that the Pending Home Sales Index has been since April of 2010.

Of course, the pending home sales news, while positive, is not a sign that the housing market has fully recovered, especially not in the Chicago area. Yes, sales of Chicago condominiums and single-family homes are up. But sale prices are still far below where they stood during the height of the housing boom in 2005-2007.

This means that home sellers still need to work with a skilled REALTOR® to best increase their odds of selling their homes quickly and for the right price. Only a licensed REALTOR® who knows your neighborhood can help you avoid leaving money on the table or – worse – overpricing your property. And until you set the right price for your home, you are not going to sale – no matter who you hire.

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