For real estate agents in the Chicago area, the housing recovery has been a little slower than other regions in the country, and it is putting a dent in the wallets of residential property owners in the area. It is creating a market that offers plenty of challenges.

According to Crain’s Chicago Business, the difference between the current market value of all residential property in the six-county area and what it would be worth if the Chicago real estate market’s recovery had been keeping pace with the rest of the country is $107 billion.

There have been some pockets of accelerated growth recently, particularly in several affluent areas where home prices are now more than previous high-water market. Overall, however, the recovery has been slower, with home values on average 20 percentage points below the national figure, according to the latest data from the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Indices, released in May.

Core Logic also has found that more homeowners in the Windy City area are underwater on their mortgages than in any metro area in the nation. It found that 162,613 Chicago-area homeowners owed more on their home than the property was worth.

According to the survey, Chicago has the third-highest rate of underwater mortgages among major metro areas. It found that 12 percent of Chicago homeowners with a mortgage were underwater in the first quarter, trailing only Miami (15.7 percent) and Las Vegas (14.2 percent).

These figures don’t mean that there isn’t opportunity available for real estate agents in this market.

Chicagoland’s real estate sales have performed well this year, with overall sales of detached single-family homes up 4 percent in May over the same time in 2016.

According to data released recently by the Mainstreet Organization of Realtors, the median sale price of detached single-family homes is also up, nearly 9 percent over May of last year.

According to Karen Irace, president-elect of the MORe board of directors, high demand and low inventory make it a great time to put a property on the market.

“For anyone considering selling their home, it would be wise to put it on the market sooner rather than later, since there’s typically a slowdown in the market as we move into the fall and families begin settling in for the school,” she said.

The MOBe data also finds that sales of attached single-family homes were also strong in May, with a 7.4 percent increase in the number of units sold throughout Chicagoland over the same period last year.

Moreover, median sales price on these properties rose 5.3 percent year-over-year

“Many sellers are finding themselves with multiple offers to consider,” Irace said.

While the region hasn’t regained its value as fast as other areas of the country, some momentum may be picking up and Windy City agents may expect to reap the rewards of their work.