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Study shows decline in Cook County property values

Updated: October 3, 2011 12:55PM

In a new snapshot of the real estate slump, the Civic Federation reported Thursday that the market value of taxable property in Cook County declined for the third straight year.

The nonpartisan research group estimated the value of Cook County property at $550.1 billion in assessment year 2009, which was billed to taxpayers last year and is the latest information available. The decline was 10.7 percent from the prior year.

Cook County’s property valuation peaked in 2006 at $666.2 billion and the decline since then has been 17.4 percent. Most homeowners have experienced steeper declines in their property’s values, but the federation’s numbers include business and residential buildings plus the value from new construction.

Its study showed that for 2009, property within Chicago lost 9.8 percent of its value to $280.3 billion, compared with 2008.

Suburban property fared slightly worse. For suburbs north of North Avenue, the valuation of $163.2 billion was down 12.7 percent. Suburbs south of North Avenue recorded a dip of 9.9 percent to $106.7 billion.

The federation said that even with the recent declines, Chicago’s property tax base saw a 72.4 percent increase during the last decade. By comparison, the northerly suburbs had a 43.5 percent increase and the southerly suburbs had a 46.9 percent increase.

The federation based its data on Cook County assessments and Illinois Department of Revenue analysis. Its estimates do not include railroad land or property that is tax exempt.

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