AP NEWS

Illinois home values increasing, but slower than other states

April 9, 2018 GMT

Illinois homes are becoming more valuable, but at a slower pace than its neighbors.

Research firm CoreLogic tracks monthly home values. Its Home Price Index shows the nation’s homes have grown in value 6.7 percent between February 2017 and February 2018. Homes in Illinois gained 3 percent in value in that time.

Wisconsin (5.9 percent), Indiana (6 percent), Missouri (6.3 percent), Iowa (3.7 percent), and Kentucky (5.5 percent) all saw more appreciation.

In Illinois, home sales in February were down 5.1 percent from February 2017, according to Illinois Realtors. At the same time, lower housing inventory and strong buyer demand combined to increase prices for the month, the group reported.

CoreLogic chief economist Frank Nothaft said home values are closely tied to the local economy.

“It partly reflects the weaker economy and labor market in Illinois,” he said. “There’s a real strong tie between unemployment, income of a family and then housing demand.”

Decatur was the only Illinois metropolitan area whose Home Price Index decreased over the past 12 months. The home value index there dropped 4.5 percent.

“HPI is very dependent on the latest local economic trend,” Nothaft said.

Decatur was one of three Illinois cities that shrank in total employment in 2017. It lost 700 jobs.

Other cities saw home values grow faster than the state’s rate. Champaign-Urbana homes saw an index increase of 5.6 percent.

The Chicago metropolitan area saw an HPI increase of 3.4 percent, but was one of the few that CoreLogic didn’t deem “overvalued” because home prices were growing faster than wages.

Nationally, CoreLogic’s index has risen 52.2 percent since March 2011, the lowest point of the housing bust.