“Housing sales in Illinois and the nine-county Chicago region increased in August and positive year-to-year changes are forecast in both the Chicago PMSA and Illinois for the next three months of September, October and November,” said Dr. Geoffrey J.D. Hewings, director of the Regional Economics Applications Laboratory (REAL) of the University of Illinois.

“A strong buyer’s market continues in the Illinois housing market with record low mortgage interest rates and lower home prices although job worries and overall economic uncertainty are holding many back,” said REALTOR® Sheryl Grider Whitehurst, ABR, CRB, GRI, e-PRO, president of the Illinois Association of REALTORS® and a managing broker for Traders Realty in Peoria. “In some local markets prices are firming as homes are selling due to high affordability conditions and pent-up demand; 8.5 percent more homes sold statewide in August compared to the previous month of July.”

Adds Hewings: “Once again the debate has been joined about the appropriate response from the federal government to the lagging economy—attention to the deficit or a second stimulus package—but increasingly consumers are signaling frustration with Washington politics. The uncertainties and lack of a clearly articulated economic recovery strategy combine to dampen prospects for a sustained housing recovery.”

Sales and price information is generated from a survey of Multiple Listing Service sales reported by 32 participating Illinois REALTOR® local boards and associations including Midwest Real Estate Data LLC data as of September 7, 2011 reported for the period August 1 through August 31, 2011. The Chicago PMSA, as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau, includes the counties of Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry and Will.

The Illinois Association of REALTORS® is a voluntary trade association whose 44,000 members are engaged in all facets of the real estate industry. In addition to serving the professional needs of its members, the Illinois Association of REALTORS® works to protect the rights of private property owners in the state by recommending and promoting legislation that safeguards and advances the interest of real property ownership.

Find Illinois housing stats data and the University of Illinois REAL forecast at www.illinoisrealtor.org/marketstats.