The study relies on sales data gathered by MRED, LLC, the regional multiple listing service. The study compared home sales in the first half of this year to similar periods last year and in 2008, which is when the real estate market was still near its peak, according to a RE/MAX press release.
The results show that in the 116 communities that have Metra train service, the median sales price increased 5.6 percent to $170,000 compared to the same time period in 2012. The median sales price rose 2.3 percent to $148,000 in suburbs without Metra service.
Suburbs without Metra service matched the Metra-served communities in the average number of days a home was listed prior to going under contract. Average market time for the Metra communities in 2013 was 131 days, 40 days less than last year. Suburbs without Metra service had identical results, with the average market time falling to 131 days this year from 171 days in 2012.
The RE/MAX study also found that the growth in home sales activity was similar in both the Metra-served communities and suburbs without Metra service.
Home sales during the first half of this year were 29 percent higher in the Metra communities and increased 28 percent in suburbs without Metra service. The 2013-to-2008 comparison was similarly close, with the Metra communities seeing a 66 percent increase and suburbs without Metra service gaining 67 percent.
The rate of change in sales activity and median prices was fairly consistent across all 11 Metra lines, with a few exceptions.
Comparing 2013 to 2012, 10 of the 11 lines saw sales activity increase between 24 and 37 percent and the median price gain between 5 and 9 percent. The exceptions were the Heritage Corridor, where sales increased 16 percent, and the Metra Electric line, where the median price rose 48 percent.
Regarding sales activity concentration, communities along the Union Pacific Northwest Line and Burlington Northern Santa Fe Line have consistently accounted for a combined total of about one third of all home sales in the Metra communities, which was true again in 2013.
During the first six months of this year, the two lines had a combined total of 8,156 sales out of 24,556 total sales in the Metra-served communities.
Source: RE/MAX press release