Recovery Could Finally Boost Condo Market

December 9, 2014

HouseCHICAGO—As reported in, last year around this time, experts from across the Midwest were predicting that the nation’s modest recovery would gain momentum in 2014 and increasingly drive growth in secondary markets. Those predictions were mostly accurate, and in 2014 the Chicago-area saw a strengthening for-sale market with home prices up as well as continued demand for new rental options, with class A downtown apartments averaging 93.8% occupancy. And once again, Chicago-area real estate experts are looking ahead to the next year with optimism.

Although demand for rental units is strong, for example, many feel condominium sales and pricing will see an uptick in 2015. “There’s strong demand, but new construction has been nearly non-existent since the downturn, and condo inventory is at its lowest level since tracking began in 1997,” says David Wolf, president of Related Realty. “That spells opportunity for developers, and we’re starting to see new projects announced.”

Related, one of the most active builders in the region, was also recently hired to oversee the sales and marketing for 100 West Huron, a new 28-unit luxury condominium building set for delivery in 2016. Wolf notes that Chicago is still two to three years out from any large-scale new-construction projects being completed. But the company’s South Loop Luxury by Related, a collection of 500 condos across three towers next to the downtown’s Museum Campus, will continue to offer a large number of new condos. The company revamped the previously stalled development in 2013, and has sold 400 units in just over 18 months. Wolf expects the remaining 100 residences to sell quickly next year.

The suburbs should also see a small but noticeable uptick in its condo market. Foxford Communities, for example, sold more than half of its 72 units at Medinah on the Lake, a luxury condo conversion in suburban Bloomingdale in just six months following its 2014 opening. Company officials say they expect robust sales in 2015 at its newest condominium community, Clocktower Pointe in suburban Countryside.