Department of Numbers

This section of Department of Numbers is no longer being updated and may be removed in the future. The data here is out of date and should no longer be used.

Chicago, Illinois Home Affordability

The data below measures home affordability for the Chicago-Joliet-Naperville, Illinois metropolitan area using price-to-income and price-to-rent metrics.1 The maximum affordable loan amount for the median household income is also calculated. You can also compare Chicago home affordability to other cities.

Chicago, Illinois Home Price-to-Income Ratios

The current price-to-income ratio for Chicago is 2.99 as determined by March 2014 Realtor median sales prices. The second chart shows a history of the ratio as an index calculated from the Federal Housing Finance Agency's Chicago HPI series. Median household income data for Chicago is from the Census American Community Survey.

Price-to-Income Dollar Ratio: Realtor

Price-to-Income Index Ratio: FHFA

Note: Index set to 100 in Q1 of 2000

Chicago, Illinois Home Price-to-Income Ratio History

Date Realtor
(Dollar Ratio)
(Index Ratio)
March 2014 2.99
December 2013 3.16 108.4
September 2013 3.53 107.3
June 2013 3.40 105.7
March 2013 2.69 104.5
December 2012 2.96 104.9
September 2012 2.96 104.7
June 2012 2.96 103.7

Chicago, Illinois Home Price-to-Rent Ratios

The current adjusted price-to-rent ratio for Chicago is 15.77 as determined by March 2014 Realtor median sales prices. This ratio is calculated using household size adjusted median contract rent for Chicago. The chart below shows an index of the rent ratio calculated from the metro FHFA HPI series and the Chicago median contract rent data from the Census ACS.

Price-to-Rent Dollar Ratio: Realtor, Realtor Adjusted Rent

Price-to-Rent Index Ratio: FHFA

Note: Index set to 100 in Q1 of 2000

Chicago, Illinois Home Price-to-Rent Ratio History

Date Realtor
(Dollar Ratio)
Realtor Adjusted
(Dollar Ratio)
(Index Ratio)
March 2014 17.70 15.77
December 2013 18.72 16.67 89.0
September 2013 20.91 18.63 88.0
June 2013 20.14 17.94 86.8
March 2013 15.95 14.21 85.8
December 2012 17.54 15.62 86.1
September 2012 17.54 15.62 86.0
June 2012 17.54 15.62 85.1

Chicago, Illinois Home Rent-to-Mortgage Payment Ratio

The rent-to-mortgage payment ratio uses the adjusted rent for Chicago against a 100% loan-to-value mortgage (30-year fixed) for the median price home using Realtor home sales statistics. It's a lot like a cap rate, but I find it more appealing in ratio form. A ratio of 1.0 means that annual rent is equivalent annual mortgage payments. Values less than 1.0 indicate rents are cheaper and values greater than 1.0 mean mortgage payments are cheaper. Beware, taxes are not considered here. The rent-to-mortgage payment ratio for Chicago was 1.06 in March 2014.

Rent-to-Mortgage Payment Dollar Ratio: Realtor

Chicago, Illinois Home Rent-to-Mortgage Payment Ratio History

Date Realtor Adjusted Rent
(Dollar Ratio)
March 2014 1.06
December 2013 0.99
September 2013 0.88
June 2013 0.96
March 2013 1.30
December 2012 1.21
September 2012 1.19
June 2012 1.16

Chicago, Illinois Inferred Affordable Mortgage

The inferred affordable mortgage value is determined by taking the median household income for Chicago, Illinois and calculating the mortgage 30% of that income could afford. Traditionally, 30% of income is the maximum amount a homeowner could use towards a home loan. Inferred affordable loan values are calculated from ACS median household income and average monthly mortgage rates.

Inferred Affordable Mortgage

Chicago, Illinois Inferred Affordable Mortgage History

Date Inferred Mortgage
February 2014 $299,375
January 2014 $294,810
December 2013 $293,771
November 2013 $300,801
October 2013 $303,321
September 2013 $292,738
August 2013 $293,771
July 2013 $296,904
June 2013 $307,715
May 2013 $328,293
April 2013 $331,988
March 2013 $327,075
February 2013 $328,701

1. Specifically, home prices are from the non seasonally adjusted FHFA all-transactions quarterly series. Dollar ratios are calculated using NAR metro prices when available. Rent and income data are from the Census ACS and are carried forward into the following year prior to release of the new data.