The inventory of single family homes for sale in Evanston has increased dramatically over the past few months, going from a two-month supply on July 1 last year to a four-month supply a year later.

Figures from Headrick-Wagner Appraisal Group reports show the biggest jump in inventory occurred this spring when the number of detached single-family homes on the market rose from 142 to 213.

The number of sales in Evanston has stayed fairly consistent over the past year, but the inventory has ballooned as sellers find it harder to get the price they’re seeking and buyers find higher mortgage rates reduce the amount of house they can afford.

Headrick-Wagner says a balanced market typically has a three to four month supply of houses for sale. Less than that and it’s a sellers market, with atypically low inventory.Mmore than that and the market starts to favor the buyer.

But sellers in Evanston are in much better shape than those in most of the Chicago region. There’s a 5.6 month inventory for the region as a whole, and Evanston’s inventory levels are the lowest among the north suburbs, where the average is a 6.72 month supply.

The message that the market is cooling seems to have gotten through to sellers in Evanston. The average listing price of single-family homes stood at $719,045 last October, but after rising to $743,866 in April, it declined to $683,724 by July.

Meanwhile the average selling prices of Evanson single family homes actually rose 5.7 percent, from $580,961 last October to $614,489 in July.

High priced homes tend to take longer to sell than lower-priced ones, and that remains true in Evanston. The latest numbers show a 2.65 month inventory of homes priced at under $300,000 while there’s a 6 month inventory of homes priced at over $2 million.

The months-of-inventory figures are calculated by comparing the number of houses on the market now with the number that have sold in that area during the past year.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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