Median price

The median selling price of an existing home in Evanston rose 3 percent last year, but some housing types faired much better than others.

Prices for detached single family homes rose 8 percent while town home prices dropped 16 percent. Prices for three-bedroom and larger condos fell 7 percent, while prices declined 1 percent for two-bedroom condos and 2 percent for one-bedroom units.

The decline may in part explain why some residents of condo complexes downtown have been turning out to oppose construction of more new high-rises – in fear the new construction will further slice value from their own homes.

But the flat or declining values for some housing types also means Evanston had more affordable housing options last year than in 2005.

Evanston’s stock of single family homes has been essentially static at about 9,626 — the number shown in the 2000 census.

The city says 1,445 new multi-family units, almost all condos or townhomes, have been built in the past six years and hundreds more rental apartments have been converted to condos. That suggests there’s been about a 25 percent increase in the inventory of condos and town homes.

Sales volume

The sales figures, from the Multiple Listing Service of Northern Illinois, also show a decline of nearly 12 percent in the number of homes sold last year, to 1,194. Sales of all types of homes declined, except for town homes, the smallest category, which increased nearly 70 percent to 90 units.

It took 20 percent longer to sell a home in Evanston in 2006 than in 2005 — an average of 64 days.

The selling time varied dramatically by housing type, with detached single family homes selling in a median time of 41 days and town homes selling in 55 days. Condos sold much more slowly, an average of 99 days for one-bedroom units, 76 days for two-bedroom units and 82 days for three-bedroom units.

Home owners ended up slicing a little more off their asking prices to closed the deal last year. The average home in Evanston sold for 95.8 percent of of its listing price in 2005. That fell to 95.4 percent in 2006.

The amount of the price reductions did not vary much by housing type, and single family detached home owners actually cut their listing prices by a larger percentage than did town home or condo owners.

2006 prices

The median selling prices of different housing types last year showed the continuing diversity of Evanstons housing stock.

The medians ranged from $194,000 for a one-bedroom condominium to $550,000 for a single-family home.

The least-expensive one bedroom condo was a unit at 209 Ridge Ave. that sold for $110,000, while the most-expensive single family home was a lakefront mansion at 715 Sheridan Road that sold for $3 million.

On average homes north of Dempster Street, in zip code 60201 sold for more than homes south of Dempster, in zip code 60202.

Single family homes averaged 26 percent less south of Dempster. The disparity for other housing types was smaller — with the smallest difference — just 8 percent — for one-bedroom condo units.

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