Builders slow pace at loftier levels

Murphy, H. Lee
March 2006
Crain's Chicago Business;3/6/2006, Vol. 29 Issue 10, p42
The article describes problems faced by homebuilders in Chicago, Illinois. With $1-million home listings in many suburbs around Chicago mounting, high-end homebuilders are likely to pursue fewer new-construction starts. Recent statistics suggest that the real estate market is saturated with monster houses. As of February 3, 2006, there were 2,532 houses in metro Chicago for sale with an asking price of $1 million or more, up 53% from last year. There were 67 houses priced at $5 million or above, an increase of 49% from the year-ago total of 45. In 2005, 1,951 houses sold at prices above $1 million. In the late 1990s, Tim Thompson Custom Homes Inc., in Hinsdale, had 40 employees and built $15 million worth of custom homes a year. Actually, housing is probably going to be in retreat all over early on this year. The high end of the housing market is typically less affected by factors like unemployment and rising interest rates.


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