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RISMEDIA, January 28, 2010—The RE/MAX Northern Illinois real estate network reports that its home sales on a year-over-year basis showed a substantial upturn during the final quarter of 2009, with much of that improvement due to stronger sales in the metropolitan Chicago real estate market. RE/MAX unit sales totaled 8,309 for the quarter, an increase of 36% when compared to the final quarter of 2008.

“Home buyers definitely are returning to the marketplace even as the large number of distressed properties for sale has led to lower home prices and improved affordability,” said Jim Merrion, regional director of the RE/MAX Northern Illinois real estate network. “Sales have improved dramatically across our region, especially in the Chicago area, including the City of Chicago.”

According to Merrion, RE/MAX saw its share of listings sold in the city rise from 6.5% in 2008 to 8.2% in 2009, based on data compiled by Midwest Real Estate Data, LLC. Among the seven brokerage firms with the largest city market shares, RE/MAX achieved the greatest increase, while four of its major competitors saw their share of the city market decline.

The seven leading brokerage organizations in Chicago include:

1. Coldwell Banker
2. @ Properties
4. Prudential Rubloff
6. Baird & Warner
7. Century 21

“The large number of distressed properties on the market in both the city and suburbs has created a sales environment that is different from anything most real estate professionals have ever experienced,” said Merrion. “In response to this unique market opportunity, the RE/MAX organization has provided agents with access to training in foreclosures, short sales and REOs (bank-owned properties). Our agents have embraced this new niche enthusiastically and now lead the industry in completing the Certified Distressed Property Expert training. With our expertise in the distressed property sector, we are confident that we will continue to increase our leadership standing during 2010.”

According to Merrion, RE/MAX results were strongly positive throughout the fourth quarter, and the year ended with “some very high double-digit increases during this quarter when compared to 2008.” The RE/MAX Northern Illinois network recorded a 27% increase in closed transactions during October, a 60% increase during November and a 24% increase during December compared to the same months in 2008.

For more information, visit www.remax.com.