A Seller’s Market, House Hunters, and the Undeniable Appeal of New Construction

Make no mistake, sellers of existing properties hold the edge in today’s real estate marketplace – and that clear reality is elevating the appeal of new construction.

With existing homes selling fast and at elevated prices as demand exceeds supply, homebuyers are facing intense competition for properties. For many, the homebuying process, one that should be filled with optimism and promise, has become overrun with stress and frustration. Buyers are being caught in bidding wars, forced into hurried, act-now situations, or confronting as-is properties that immediately place their investment in peril.

While some homebuyers are electing to trudge through market conditions, another – and growing – group of house hunters is embracing a different solution: they are building a new home.

It’s a (Hot!) Seller’s Market

Home sellers in the nine-county Chicago metropolitan area are in the driver’s seat right now. Consider these facts pulled from Illinois REALTORS and the University of Illinois’ Regional Economics Applications Laboratory (REAL):

• Active listings in the Chicago metropolitan area are down nearly 50 percent from 2020.
• Current supply in the $300,000-500,000 price point, where most Chicago area homes were sold in March 2021, is half of what it was at this time last year.
• The median price of Chicago area home sales jumped from $260,000 in March 2020 to $295,000 in March 2021, a 13.5 percent increase.
• Whereas Chicago area homes in the $300,000-500,000 price range sat on the market for an average of 51 days in March 2020, those homes are now selling two weeks faster.

And it doesn’t appear homebuyers will get a reprieve anytime soon. REAL predicts that the median home prices in metro Chicago will continue to accelerate and increase by as much as 10 percent by July.

With Chicago area homes selling faster and for more money and the existing supply of resale properties on the market remaining low, homebuyers can expect more of the same in the near future, particularly on properties in the middle of the market.

New Construction Gains

Enter new construction as an antidote to the madness and a way for homebuyers to retake the wheel.

New home sales are surging across the country and locally. In fact, new construction activity from February 2021 to March 2021 soared 123 percent in the Midwest, according to the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

And for good reason.

At Gallagher and Henry, a family-owned firm that has been building homes in the Chicago area since 1954, prospective homebuyers avoid the intense, hurried environment dominating the current resale market.

Buyers will see transparent pricing on six different floor plans from Gallagher and Henry’s Lifestyle Series. With open concept layouts, flex spaces, and three-car garages, these home plans – two ranches and four two-story plans – were designed for the needs of modern living. Buyers can alter the existing floor plans and incorporate a vast array of options, in which case Gallagher and Henry staff will cost out the requested changes and share a detailed report to inform buyers’ decision-making.

In eight communities across Chicago’s southwest suburbs, you can select your lot and then finalize your home plan before crews begin construction work. A Gallagher and Henry sales associate will then guide you through the selection process one step at a time, from exterior selections like brick and the garage doors to interior selections, such as cabinets, hardware, flooring, and countertops.

The entire process, which typically runs 6-8 months, is managed and streamlined, allowing calm and calculated decision-making to replace the frenzied environment so commonplace in the resale market.

And given the frenetic pace of the resale market, doesn’t that sound nice?