These days, it’s not easy to find a single-family home in Chicago

Struggling to find a single-family home to buy in Chicago? You’re far from alone. According to a recent story by Crain’s Chicago Business, finding detached housing to purchase in Chicago has become quite the challenge.

Citing numbers from the Chicago Association of REALTORS®, Crain’s reported that the number of single-family homes for sale in the city is at its lowest since at least January of 2007.

Crain’s reports that as of Feb. 2, there 3,041 single-family homes for sale in Chicago. That number is a drop of 14 percent from the same time a year earlier.

If you’re looking instead for a condo, you’re more fortunate: The numbers from the REALTORS® association say that the supply of condos and townhomes has been fairly steady during the last three years. The real drop in supply is occurring among single-family homes.

Why is the supply so low in Chicago? That’s hard to say. One theory says that because home prices in Chicago haven’t risen as quickly as in other markets, more local homeowners haven’t built enough equity to put their properties on the market. Homeowners with limited equity will struggle to earn enough money on their sales to make a solid profit. This might be keeping many local owners from putting their Chicago single-family homes up for sale.

If you are looking for a home, it’s important to work with a REALTOR® who knows your neighborhood. This professional can help you find properties that are priced properly. They can also help you negotiate with sellers to make sure that you won’t overpay for the Chicago single-family homes you do find.

With such limited inventory, it can be frustrating for buyers looking for a residence in Chicago. Today, patience is key. It’s important, too, to not overpay just to beat out another buyer. It never makes sense to pay more for a home than what it’s worth, no matter the market.