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Evanston retains housing diversity

Evanston, known for its diversity, is living up to that reputation when it comes to housing prices.

At the very top of the market, the most expensive property changing hands during the past 12 months was a lakefront mansion at 715 Sheridan Road that went for $3 million.

At the other end of the spectrum, the buyer of the least expensive property paid just $110,000 for a one-bedroom condominium at 209 Ridge Ave.

And other data from the Multiple Listing Service of Northern Illinois shows that the median price paid for a single family home, townhouse or condominium in Evanston was $338,000 — a lot closer to the low than the high end.

The median one-bedroom condo sold for $198,000; the median two-bedroom condo for $270,000; the median three-bedroom or larger condo for $361,000; the median town home for $337,000 and the median detached single-family home for $540,500.

Single family detached homes in Evanston are sold much less often than condos. The 2000 U.S. Census showed Evanston had 9,626 single family detached homes. The realtor data shows 392, or 4 percent of them, sold in the past 12 months.

The city had 1,433 townhomes in 2000 and 86, or 6 percent, sold in the past 12 months.

At the time of the 2000 census, Evanston had 5,633 owner-occupied units in multi-family buildings. Since then city figures suggest new construction and condo conversions may have added about 2,000 more condo units.

With a total of 563 condos sold in the past 12 months, that suggests a turnover rate of about 7.4 percent — nearly twice the turnover of single family detached homes.

But since many new and converted condos — but very few new single-family homes — are coming on the market, the figures don’t necessarily mean that condo buyers move much more often than single-family home owners do.

With a tighter supply, the median single family home spent just 36 days on the market in Evanston last year. The median townhome took 55 days to sell.

For condos the median time-on-market was 91 days for one-bedroom units, 63 days for two-bedroom models and 76 days for units with three or more bedrooms.

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