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Home buyers flocking to H-F area: real estate trade group

It’s official. Homewood and Flossmoor are now recognized as two of the four hottest suburban real estate markets in the Chicago area. In its July 18 edition, Crain’s Chicago Business reported the surge in local home purchases based on recent data from the Chicago Association of Realtors.

It’s official. Homewood and Flossmoor are now recognized as two of the four hottest suburban real estate markets in the Chicago area. 
 
In its July 18 edition, Crain’s Chicago Business reported the surge in local home purchases based on recent data from the Chicago Association of Realtors (CAR).
 
Homewood and Flossmoor, along with two north suburban towns, Winthrop Harbor and Beach Park, reached the top of the list based on the criteria of improved major indicators: the number of sales, median home sale prices and how long a listed home remains on the market.
 
Increased sales and fast moving sale transactions in Homewood and Flossmoor are no surprise to local officials and area realtors who are in mutual agreement on the reason for the influx of buyers.
 
At the top of the list across the board were the median prices for homes in the two well-established communities offering desirable amenities important to professional people and young families desiring to provide the best for their children.
 
“It’s about time we are recognized,” said Flossmoor Mayor Paul Braun. “We have beautiful homes here and the housing values are a good deal at the moment. We have many amenities including great schools, a library, a thriving park district and the lowest crime rate in the South Suburbs. 
 
“Our realtors in town tell me that many of their clients are professional people from the city, the University of Chicago and Hyde Park area, looking for good schools and safe communities. Flossmoor has all these things.”
 
Homewood Mayor Richard Hofeld also acknowledged the movement of buyers from Chicago.
 
“We know we are a hot market because homes are moving really fast,” Hofeld said. “(Buyers) are looking for a good, solid, established community and we are it. We have all they are looking for. Plus, we have the Metra line which provides a quick commute into the city.” 
 
Realtor Susan Jenner of the Jenner Group/Baird & Warner agreed. Jenner has been the Top Producer in the South/Southwest Region since 2010 and is also the No. 1 broker in the Flossmoor market. 
 
“Where else can you go and have an indoor tennis court, an inside ice arena and a public golf course, all within a couple minutes drive time?” Jenner said. “What a bonus for young families who want to give their children the best opportunities in life. I tell my clients, ‘Come to Homewood-Flossmoor. We’ve got it all.’“
 
Jenner said the home buying activity in 2017 is different than in previous years.
 
“Homes started moving quickly beginning in January, which is unusual,” she said. “Generally, the market picks up in April. But we had a warmer winter this year, and I think that people were aware that interest rates were going to rise.” 
 
“I love our two communities,” Jenner said. “There is such a passion here. It is just a special place and we have great value here for the money. We are not a community of cookie-cutter houses. There are many unique, beautiful homes and both villages have pedestrian friendly downtowns with interesting shops and restaurants.”
 
Coldwell Banker Realtor Vicki Burke Stevenson agrees that sales are moving faster in H-F than last year, which suggests more buyers are looking.
 
“It is a snowball effect,” Stevenson said. “When people buy houses quickly it prompts other buyers to move faster on homes for fear of missing out.”
 
“What is most exciting is the number of sales to younger couples and families coming from the city. Some are moving back to the area, but some are fresh to the South Suburbs. And, they bring their friends.”
 
Stevenson said three houses in the Flossmoor Park neighborhood were sold to a group of friends this spring.
 
Brenda J. Morgan, a realtor with RE/MAX who has sold homes in Homewood-Flossmoor for more than 30 years, said she, too, has seen the change in sales.
 
“Homes are selling quickly due to the amount of square footage for the price, and the vast amounts of variety in architectural design,” Morgan said. “The downtown areas are home to great restaurants and small family-owned businesses which give the Homewood-Flossmoor area a nice small-town feel that people enjoy.” 

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