I wouldn't disagree with any of the answers here, but I'd suggest that the "average" amount of earnest money deposited with an offer to purchase contract can vary widely depending on what areas/neighborhoods of the City of Chicago that you're dealing with.
The amount of earnest money also can vary greatly depending on the purchase price of the property. Typically the higher the purchase price the more money you'll have to deposit but not necessarily a higher percentage of the purchase price. So if you have a $100,000.00 purchase and only put down 1%, you'll only need to put down $1,000.00. If that purchase price is $750,000.00, then the same 1% becomes $7,500.00.
What's most important is what specific agreement you come to with your specific buyer or seller. Good luck.
Broker Associate, Keller Williams Realty Chicago Consulting Group
716 E. 47th St. Chicago, IL 60653
(773) 770-5947 (cell) (312) 577-0985 (fax)
sorry for the repitiion in this answer, but if i were a buyer, i'd put down as little earnest money as i could possibly get away with.
were i a seller, i'd want to see 5%, but if the buyer appears to be serious and well qualified, and price offered were fair, i'd take less...
Typically $1,000 with offer for initial earnest money deposit. And while it used to be 5% in "boom years"... If I'm acting as buyer's agent... I recommend as little as possible... sometimes 1% or 2%... of course, if I'm the listing agent, I'm looking for closer to 5%... but we're seeing deals gel for far less than 5%.
In Chicago the average amount of earnest money is 5%. Of course there are variations, a home that I recently sold for $900,000 transacted with only $15,000 in earnest money while another home that I sold for $1.5MM had only $50,000 in earnest money. As the previous respondent indicated, an initial amount of $1,000 or so is expressed upon the execution of the contract and the remainder is agreed to be expressed at a set time often linked to attorney review/inspection period.
Best of luck with any searches or sales that may be on the horizon for you.