As far as the square footage not showing up, it is because the public sites pull information directly from the County Recorder's offices and sometimes details that would normally be put in by a Listing Agent are missing. You can bet if there are major pieces of information missing from a property that it is not listed with an agent and probably not even for sale.
Contact a licensed agent who belongs to the Multiple Listings Service to get your search results accurate sent to you!
New construction has a hard time competing with resale higher end homes in this tough market. In Libertyville, 200-250 per foot is about what it costs to build, depending on finishes and how fancy you go in the kitchen. A recently constructed resale house in Libertyville however goes for 150-200 per foot. So unless you have a specific drawing you want to build or custom ideas with regard to kitchen or green building, resale is the way to go. For example in Wineberry subdivision you can buy a lot for 200-250k, build a 3500 sqft home and have $1.1M into it for a lot backing to the train tracks or high tension wires. No homes have sold in Wineberry recently over $1M and you can get a less than 10 year house for 750-900k that has a good interior lot location. Plus you will probably get a finished basement.
As to your question regarding square footage in general, it isn't a required field in the MLS and unless it makes the house look impressive to buyers it is not of benefit to the seller to broadcast the square footage. For example, a 2300 sqft track home sounds small, but if you say it is a Westport model just like every other Westport out there people know what they are getting. If you say a 6000 sqft ranch with walkout basement that means 3000 sqft above grade and 3000 in the basement. Walkouts can count in square footage but not regular finished basements. The square footage is on the county assessor web site so if you are interested in a particular home you can search for it on the Lake county assessor home page. Hope this helps! Call me if you care to discuss. 847 276-0120
I understand your frustration. Having sold many newly constructed homes in Libertyville I can appreciate the question. I'll assume that you are talking about custom construction since there isn't much else available in new construction. If you ask a builder to give you a cost per square foot they will typically tell you they can't give you a figure. The cost will be based on the cost of the land, the cost of the materials used, landscaping, square footage, upgrades, etc. Many builders will give you a ball park figure depending on the square footage and amenities that they would normally include in the total package. I've seen most custom built homes end up in the $225.00-$325.00 per square foot range. That price includes the land. I know this is a wide range, but it all adds up depending on the upgrades for want. I can say that if you are determined to build, that it is a very good time to do so considering the current costs of materials and land. If I can be of any further assistance, please let me know.