Number of Foreclosed Homes Falling in the Chicago Market

Foreclosed homes can be bargains for buyers. But too many foreclosures hurt a local real estate market, acting to bring down home values in entire neighborhoods.


That’s why a recent story by Crain’s Chicago Business is such good news for the Chicago housing market: According to the story, the number of foreclosed homes sold in September hit its lowest point in more than seven years.


According to the Crain’s story, 988 homes sold in the Chicago area in September were foreclosures. According to Midwest Real Estate Data, that’s the lowest this figure has been since February of 2009. In fact, this is the first time this figure has been under 1,000 since that month. Back in February of 2009, 725 of the homes sold in the Chicago market were foreclosures.


In August, there were significantly more foreclosed homes sold. Crain’s reports that last month, the Chicago market saw 1,114 sales of foreclosed homes. In September, though, foreclosed homes made up just 9.8 percent of the homes sold during the month.


Now, this doesn’t mean that foreclosures are drying up completely here. Crain’s pointed to numbers showing that in the third quarter of 2016, more than 16,200 homes in the Chicago area were in some stage of the foreclosure process. Most of these homes will eventually be sold by banks or other financial institutions as foreclosures in the near future.


If you are looking to buy a foreclosed home, yes, you might be able to buy more home for your dollar. But be careful, too. Many foreclosed homes hit the market in rough shape. They might require extensive repairs and upgrades. Their former owners rarely invested much money in their upkeep, especially as they struggled to make their monthly mortgage payments.


If you do want to find a foreclosed home in Chicago, work with a REALTOR® who can help you find the right property: one that does come at a lower price but that won’t require so much work that it will bust your budget anyway.