According to the June issue of Chicago Dispatcher, taxi medallion prices rose again in May, to an average of $170,000. Here’s some context:
Month Price Source
May ’09 $170,000 Chicago Dispatcher
April ’09 $164,500 Chicago Dispatcher
March ’09 $165,000 Chicago Dispatcher
February ’09 $158,000 Chicago Dispatcher
Feb ’07 $ 77,000 Chicago Tribune
2004 >$40,000 Chicago Tribune
1991 $28,000 Chicago Sun Times
(Chicago Dispatcher data are for the period ending on the 23rd of the indicated month).
I find it remarkable that this kind of real estate has continued to gain value, over 7% in 3 months, while most other kinds in Chicago seem to have declined. There was, however, considerable fluctuation recently, with sales in late April running around $145,000, increasing to $175,000 on May 19 and 20. According to ads in the Dispatcher, you can lease your medallion out for $600 to $700 per month, a yield of close to 5% (in addition to any price appreciation which might occur). There is, of course, some risk that the price might depreciate instead.