A mood of optimism in Winnetka and Kenilworth

Village Hall, Winnetka, IL

I checked in with local correspondent Karen Arenson earlier today to check the pulse of the Winnetka and Kenilworth market. In brief, the pulse of activity is lively this month, and the mood among sellers and real estate agents is upbeat.

"We're having an amazing December," said Arenson, who manages Coldwell Banker's Winnetka North office. "There is a lot of activity in Winnetka and Kenilworth."

Three upper-bracket homes, one listed near the $4 million mark, have recently gone under contract, according to Arenson, who notes that 21 homes sold in Kenilworth last year and 30 have sold so far this year.

"Stock market gains have been a factor. The Chicken Little sky-is-falling fear is gone. There is pent-up demand, and interest rates continue to be amazing. Fewer sellers are taking their homes off the market for the holidays this year because they're optimistic that they can get them sold."

Past Decembers were typically slow periods on the North Shore. The market this year, Arenson observed, "hasn't followed the normal seasonal ebbs and flows. June and July were better than usual; September was worse than usual."

Arenson is forecasting an increased sales pace next year, relying on forecasts by company executives and some independent economists.

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