Chicago Home Shopping Trends

The preferences and perceptions of new or used home shoppers in Charlotte, Gastonia, and Concord, North Carolina.

Infographic by Builders Digital Experience; data compiled by Hanley Wood from Metrostudy, Nielson, U.S. Census Bureau and NAHB.

Known for its iconic architecture and vibrant nightlife, Chicago is a city where residents take pride in their communities and neighborhoods. As such, when it comes to homebuying, the Chicago home shopper is not easily rushed into buying a home — typically the shopping process takes upward of nine months to complete.

Nearly 90 percent of all buyers will employ a real estate agent to help them find the perfect home, especially because most homebuyers are looking to stay in their home for about 18 years. Quality construction is a major concern for most buyers, but so is the overall design of the home. This does not necessarily mean that they want new construction homes, however, as Chicago homebuyers are only 1 percent less receptive to new homes versus the national average (44 percent). 

So, what is it that makes the Chicago homebuyer tick when it comes to new-construction homes? Check out the graphic. In case the graphic won’t load, we’ve got you covered below:


A dissection of the preferences of new home shoppers in Chicago, Naperville, and Joliet, Illinois as well as the properties of homes.

The Most Important Qualities to Look for in a Home

  • Quality of construction
  • Safer neighborhood
  • Better floor plans
  • More living space
  • Architecture/overall design (appearance of house)

New Versus Used

  • 20 percent of Chicago-area home shoppers prefer newly built homes.
  • 43 percent of Chicago-area home shoppers prefer used homes.
  • 38 percent of Chicago-area home shoppers are indifferent.

Why Buy a House?

  • Increase in income
  • Tired of current house
  • Favorable home prices

Time Frame When Searching for a New Home

  • The majority of buyers (55 percent) search between 9 and 12 months.
  • 18 percent of buyers spend 6 to 9 months looking for a home.
  • 10 percent of Chicago-area homebuyers spend 3 to 6 months searching for a home.
  • 15 percent of home shoppers find a home in less than 3 months. 

Local Housing Stats

  • The average Chicago home was built in 1962.
  • The average Chicago homeowner will stay in their home for 18 years.
  • Chicago home shoppers are 1 percent less receptive to newly built homes than the national average, 44%.
  • About 90 percent of home shoppers in the Chicago area will use a real estate agent.

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