East Lincoln Park 3-Bedroom Listed Under the 2001 Price: 2031 N. Howe

North of Armitage, south of Fullerton, east of Halsted.

This 3-bedroom, 3 bath duplex down at 2031 N. Howe is apparently in the “chosen” location for discerning buyers: East Lincoln Park.

Located in the Lincoln school district and just seconds to Oz Park and the shops and restaurants on Armitage, this 3000 square foot unit appears to have it all.

While it is a duplex down, the listing states the lower level is just 2 steps below grade.

2 out of the 3 bedrooms are on the main floor, with the third and a family room on the lower level.

The unit has hardwood floors, crown molding and a wood burning fireplace.

The kitchen has white cabinets, stainless steel appliances and granite counter tops.

It has central air, washer/dryer in the unit, 1 garage space and a private deck.

Originally listed in March 2010, it has been on and off the market and has been reduced $220,000.

It is now listed $6,000 under the 2001 purchase price.

Is this a deal?

Eudice Fogel at Prudential Rubloff has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #1: 3 bedrooms, 3 baths, 3000 square feet, duplex down, 1-car garage parking

  • Sold in September 1995 for $376,500
  • Sold in September 2001 for $625,000
  • Originally listed in March 2010 for $839,000
  • Reduced numerous times
  • Currently listed for $619,000
  • Assessments of $220 a month
  • Taxes of $5080
  • Central Air
  • Washer/dryer in the unit
  • Bedroom #1: 16×12 (main level)
  • Bedroom #2: 12×11 (main level)
  • Bedroom #3: 12×11 (lower level)
  • Family room: 35×12 (lower level) 

69 Responses to “East Lincoln Park 3-Bedroom Listed Under the 2001 Price: 2031 N. Howe”

  1. This will be an interesting property to watch. The location and size are right, but the finishes at this price point are dated. I also question listed it above 600K. Listing at 599K ‘feels’ a bit more realistic due to the lack of updates.

    My call on a final sales price is south of 525K.

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  2. Great, unique living room.

    I’d call this “SWELP,” given its southwestern location. Yes, it’s east of Halsted, but it’s south of Oz and west of Larrabee…when you’re that far south, it “feels” like you’re twice as far from the park, compared to, say, being on Belden. I guess it’s all about Lincoln Ave…(for me, at least): optimal ELP is an upsidedown triangle bordered by Lincoln, Geneva, Fullerton and LPW (and extending up, running east of Clark up to Wrightwood and over to Lakeview Ave, if being in Lincoln elem isn’t a factor).

    That said, somebody stands to get a great deal here.

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  3. Meh.

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  4. The low end finishes, duplex down and to me even the location are not worth more than 500-550 in this market.

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  5. Uninspiring, small bedrooms, dated, duplex down, patently absurd asking priced. $499k after catching up with the decliining market sometime in late summer.

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  6. Back to 2001 price levels, which is sort of where the Case Shiller price index is. But I thought East Lincoln Park was exempt from the index? Or is any evidence to the contrary automatically an exception?

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  7. Gary, from your comments, it seems that you are implying (sarcastically) that East Lincoln Park prices are at 2001 levels? If you are, then that speaks volumes about your knowledge of the ELP market and real estate in general.

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  8. But how are you going to choose which kid has to sleep in the basement?!

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  9. buyer will want to immediately renovate to tune of $50-75K+ and it’s otherwise not exciting or unique, just nice and with potential. $520ish.

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  10. So now there’s LP, ELP, SWELP and Optimal LP. I learn so much about Chicago Geography on Crib Chatter.

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  11. formerroscoevillager on April 1st, 2011 at 7:02 am

    Icarus, +1

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  12. dang for 600k cant a brother get a undermount sink?

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  13. “dang for 600k cant a brother get a undermount sink?”

    and tile in the bathroom to go all the way up, dang 600k and it feels like your getting shortchanged

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  14. Icarus, +2…. except I would rephrase it to say:

    So now there’s LP, ELP, SWELP and Optimal LP. I learn so much NONSENSE about Chicago Geography on Crib Chatter.

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  15. “dang for 600k cant a brother get a undermount sink?”

    I know that is what I have been saying for all the condos we are looking at too.
    The corners of the overmount traps dirt and no matter how much one cleans it is still filthy to me…sigh

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  16. I have a feeling that eventually East Lincoln Park will be whittled down to a single block. And maybe only one side of the street…

    As for the unit: it’s pretty bland and uninspiring. It’ a lot of space in a good location, though, and that’s got to be worth something.

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  17. “Gary, from your comments, it seems that you are implying (sarcastically) that East Lincoln Park prices are at 2001 levels? If you are, then that speaks volumes about your knowledge of the ELP market and real estate in general.”

    I’m saying that East Lincoln Park is not exempt from price declines and there is evidence of it every day. However, once I get time I’m planning on doing a formal analysis that I will publish.

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  18. “I know that is what I have been saying for all the condos we are looking at too.
    The corners of the overmount traps dirt and no matter how much one cleans it is still filthy to me”

    i wouldnt mind it if the entry fee is 300k but come on 600k of my hard earned dollar and you overmount me and skimp on the tile, which looks like basic tile at that. and the sad thing is a lemming will scoop this up and be happy that they got a “deal”.

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  19. “But I thought East Lincoln Park was exempt from the index? Or is any evidence to the contrary automatically an exception?”

    Right Gary. I’m sure you could do a better job at figuring out the data than I could so I look forward to seeing it. But there are plenty of examples that prices in ELP are at 2001 (or below). Not every property- of course. But plenty that they are no longer “exceptions.”

    Someone will always find something “wrong” with the examples I find. It will either be in ELP but on the “wrong” street. Or it’s “bland” on the inside. Or it’s “duplex down.” Or the “kitchen is old.”

    But the fact remains that these homeowners- in prime East Lincoln Park- are going to lose money even though they’ve owned the property for 10 years.

    No neighborhood, or property, is exempt from the price declines. It’s only a matter of degree- at this point.

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  20. i dont get this idea, and am shocked that smart people fell for the scam of duplex downs. yes yes a certain price point it can be acceptable but dang it over a 1/2mil is not, cannot, and should not be acceptable.
    dang it sheeple/lemmings please for the love of whatever please close your check book and stop creating a market for these types of dwellings

    I love LP its beautiful, and location is darn prime, but to me what you have to give-up and still have to pay extra doesnt exactly sit right with me. IN MY EYES its a rip off to pay those prices for what you really get. (still not as bad or even close of a rip off as wicker/bucktown)

    when a person is asked to pay over half a mill entrance fee to live in a basement and nobody says “hey that doesnt seem right” then something is f’d up in our society

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  21. “I’d call this “SWELP,” given its southwestern location.”

    Pulease.

    Apparently ELP now IS only one block.

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  22. Groove- it’s a way to “get into” a neighborhood when you can’t afford the higher price point. Duplex downs are like garden apartments (after all- who buys those?) People buy both when they want to live on a block but can’t afford the other kinds of properties.

    BUT- with townhouse prices coming down substantially- I don’t understand why someone wouldn’t choose that option over the duplex down. ESPECIALLY on the duplex downs that are $600k- $800k. That buys you a lot of townhouse- even in LP and Lakeview. And you can get a SFH in Bucktown/Wicker for that.

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  23. Basement dwellings are unacceptable, and I can remember a time when a renovated basement wasn’t even counted as living space when you listed your place to sell.

    Wow, but we have dropped our standards. Now, you can even get away with calling a windowless room a bedroom… and sell it to some lemming whose afraid of being priced out of a trendy nabe.

    When a neighborhood becomes so “hot” that basement apartments and places with windowless bedrooms command premium prices, it’s time to pioneer another run-down nabe such as LP was back in the 60s and 70s.

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  24. Everyone complains about stairs but I’s rather climb 7 flights of stairs any day that live in a duplex down. But at least this one in fairness does not look like a dungeon.

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  25. “BUT- with townhouse prices coming down substantially- I don’t understand why someone wouldn’t choose that option over the duplex down.”

    i think the sqft spread over 2 floor instead of 4 floors might be the factor. think of the new way where everything is “open”, you know no wall between the kitchen, dining, and living room. in a 4floor TH all rooms will be compartmentalized.

    jen and brad wont be able handle it that their living space doesnt look like the rest of their big-ten buds. and really how can you replicate the new pottery barn catalog when you have a wall separating your kitchen?

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  26. 450

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  27. I actually did a double take on the kitchen on this one, I thought I’d seen it before, and I did – at this place!

    http://www.redfin.com/IL/Chicago/3715-N-Sheffield-Ave-60613/unit-3/home/12742720

    Incidentally the duplex down basement place in this building is also for sale at 415. Couldn’t tell the school district but that’s a pretty big price difference between this and the LP place.

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  28. evidently all those mansions on Burling and Orchard just south of Armitage (including Penny Pritzker’s) don’t mind SWELP.

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  29. @Jennifer – 3715 N Sheffield is in Greeley. ie meh.

    http://schoollocator.cps.k12.il.us/ to look it up

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  30. “450”

    lol. it’s 3000 sq ft w/ parking in ELP. get real. if you show me some more properties in this area at $150/sq ft w/ parking, I’d love to see them.

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  31. “And maybe only one side of the street…”

    My wife only wants to live on the east side of N-S streets. Too much sun on west side.

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  32. There are some amazing photos featuring children’s bedrooms around the world, take a look:
    http://twentytwowords.com/2011/03/10/10-photographs-of-children-from-around-the-world-and-their-bedrooms/

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  33. Yes, this is a duplex down, however, look at the height of the windows on the photo of the front in comparison with the interior photo. It’s a lot more above ground than most duplex downs and has larger windows.It’s almost first floorish.

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  34. shortwithhighceilings on April 1st, 2011 at 8:30 am

    “when a person is asked to pay over half a mill entrance fee to live in a basement and nobody says “hey that doesnt seem right” then something is f’d up in our society”

    word.

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  35. “My wife only wants to live on the east side of N-S streets. Too much sun on west side.”

    While it wouldn’t be a deal breaker, I’d prefer the west side of a street because I can watch the sunsets in the backyard/deck with a glass of wine.

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  36. seriously? carpet in the bathroom?

    gross

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  37. Okay, I’ll put myself out there as a ‘sucker’: I like this place. Not because of its finishes (which are slightly dated, albeit not unlivable) but because of the space it provides on two floors in a very good location in Lincoln school district. As someone who wants to raise a family in the city–and who shares annony’s desire to live in the green zone–I think this could be a good deal somewhere under 600,000.

    But to each his own: some like more space, some like high-end finishes. I like location.

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  38. Groove77: and tile in the bathroom to go all the way up

    Man, I really, intensely dislike bathrooms where the tile is only in the tub/shower area. I don’t know why, but it bugs the heck out of me.

    Matt: Yes, this is a duplex down, however, look at the height of the windows on the photo of the front in comparison with the interior photo.

    Yeah, it’s a duplex-not-quite-as-far-down, but below grade is below grade and while you get much less of a dungeon-y feel here, most of the duplex down issues (moisture, cold, etc) are just as relevant.

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  39. “Groove- it’s a way to “get into” a neighborhood when you can’t afford the higher price point. Duplex downs are like garden apartments (after all- who buys those?) People buy both when they want to live on a block but can’t afford the other kinds of properties.”

    I agree. The caveat is that garden units use to be a substantial different price point than other units in the same building (loose rule of thumb, the higher the floor, the higher the price). But that scale quickly broke during the boom when people were able to leverage location in a GZ neighborhood over vertical location within a building.

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  40. First, I didn’t say this wasn’t ELP. Clearly it is in ELP, by anybody’s definition. I said that, for me, optimal ELP is east of Lincoln Ave. That means that (again, for me) “ELP” depends on where one is in terms of north and south.

    Second, Gary, I never said that ELP was immune to this real estate downturn. As someone who recently purchased a place in ELP for about 10% under what my neighbors paid for their unit about 6 years ago, I can attest to the fact that there was no such immunity. (That said, we paid substantially more than the seller paid in the late 90’s.) My point was that the CS Index is off limited, if any, relevance to specific, prime areas. Moreover, the CS Index (as do your otherwise informative stats and lists) fails to distinguish among the things that really set certain properties apart (e.g., duplex-downs, being on a busy corner, or being west of Lincoln). And Gary, as noted the other day, I would love to see your list of Unicorn Criteria-compliant listings (let alone a list showing that such properties have continued to decline since last year).

    Lastly, while I enjoy hearing everyone’s opinions on a given propery featured on CC (at least to the extent that such views are actually about the property, and not some strained attempt to put an anti-Semitic/racist/misogynistic gloss on the property), I think it makes sense when folks preface their post with “the area’s not for me, but I do/don’t like the place.” For instance, I would do so if the subject property were in, say, Bucktown. I realize that, despite the topic of this blog being real estate, for many folks location is but one of many factors, as opposed to the primary factor.

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  41. “The caveat is that garden units use to be a substantial different price point than other units in the same building (loose rule of thumb, the higher the floor, the higher the price). But that scale quickly broke during the boom when people were able to leverage location in a GZ neighborhood over vertical location within a building.”

    I can only think of a couple of the old houses in my neighborhood (LP) that *don’t* have their basements renovated in some way. It isn’t uncommon to have the basement dug out (standard old basement ceiling heights were 7′ and you can ‘easily’ add another foot). They’re ideal for an office, family room, guest floor, bath, nanny quarters, etc., and I just don’t understand the opposition… this isn’t anything new, as many original kitchens *were* in the basement. The suburban speak here (big windows, yards, airy rooms, sunsets/sunrises, parking) is just that… not urban.

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  42. if it’s all about location/neighborhood/school district (as opposed to space or finishes), why wouldn’t you be in those Grant places for almost half the price?

    “But to each his own: some like more space, some like high-end finishes. I like location.”

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  43. “Madeline on April 1st, 2011 at 8:49 am
    Man, I really, intensely dislike bathrooms where the tile is only in the tub/shower area. I don’t know why, but it bugs the heck out of me”

    the thing is it wouldnt bother me if i payed 300k as i would expect such finishes and cut corners but is OVER A HALF MILL

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  44. “They’re ideal for an office, family room, guest floor, bath, nanny quarters, etc., and I just don’t understand the opposition”

    you just typed they opposition arguments, reno’d basements are awesome for part time living not DAILY LIVING.

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  45. “The suburban speak here (big windows, yards, airy rooms, sunsets/sunrises, parking) is just that… not urban”

    IDK brother, i have a back yard and front yard and will say my hood is more “urban” than pasty LP?

    “urban” density wise well different story there

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  46. “if it’s all about location/neighborhood/school district (as opposed to space or finishes), why wouldn’t you be in those Grant places for almost half the price?

    “But to each his own: some like more space, some like high-end finishes. I like location.””

    roma,

    glad your back! we need more voices of reasons here.

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  47. This looks like the secret lair of the Most Interesting Man in the World’s nemesis: Boreman.

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  48. Why are the taxes so low? This one’s AV is 34,360, the middle simplex is 29,307 and the top duplex is 37,392. That whole block of Howe seems under assessed.

    Also, who actually *wants* to live across from the front entrance of a high school?

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  49. “Okay, I’ll put myself out there as a ’sucker’: I like this place.”

    Endora if you like it, you like it. For you the finishes are not a deal breaker and offset by the location. Sounds like the tipping point is the price, so if you are looking, you can either wait until they drop the price or make them an offer now.

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  50. whatever, if they didn’t use their house as an ATM, if they sell at the current ask they are walking away with almost 200k at closing…

    so owning for 10 years did in fact, “pay off”

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  51. This might not be the place that most Crib Chatters have created in Second Life, but it’s a decent deal at asking price. All the price drops make it pretty clear that the sellers are motivated, so I’ll say it sells at $610k, and it will go under contract within a month.

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  52. Huh?

    “#Sonies on April 1st, 2011 at 10:02 am

    whatever, if they didn’t use their house as an ATM, if they sell at the current ask they are walking away with almost 200k at closing…

    so owning for 10 years did in fact, “pay off””

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  53. lots of assumptions,

    But thats why I said if they didn’t use the house as an ATM…

    If they put 20% down (125k) & had 500k worth of mortgages at say market rate of september 2001 of approx 7% on a 30 year fixed, they’ll owe about 428k on the mortgage today

    they sell this place for 619k and they’ll walk away with 190k at closing which is almost 200k…

    math is hard! which is why when sabrina posts that something is selling for less than the X year price it doesn’t always mean the owner is underwater

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  54. HD: They paid $635 in 2001. It doesn’t look like they invested much, if anything, into the place. They’ve been paying on it for 10 years. Assuming they haven’t borrowed against the place, how much do you think their loan balance is? The difference between that amount the eventual sale price, less costs, will be what they walk away with.

    They just spent 10 years living in a 3,000 sq ft place with a garage in ELP. Would they have been better off renting that whole time? And, if so (assuming they could have stayed in the same rental, even at the peak, for an entire decade), what would such a rental have been like?

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  55. Sep-02 mortgage for $498.5k, refi’d the 1st and the acquisition 2d was paid off before that.

    Assuming 6% and no extra payments, balance would be ~$430k today.

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  56. my worry in considering a property like this is that it seems to be the type of property that banks are holding out of this market. Unless it’s a unique place, I’m holding off.

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  57. Also, on the taxes, with what and when the paid, taxes really should be at least $8k *and* there has never been an appeal.

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  58. ‘They just spent 10 years living in a 3,000 sq ft place with a garage in ELP. Would they have been better off renting that whole time? And, if so (assuming they could have stayed in the same rental, even at the peak, for an entire decade), what would such a rental have been like?’

    Bought the above (more or less) in ’88 for $470, same neighborhood (LP, there is no ELP but that’s another post). Mortgage w/ interest, renovations (kitchen, baths, basement, more), property taxes, gas, electric, roof, repairs, painters, plumbers, on and on and on… 22 years worth, and I would probably stand to make $100k in profit if I sold today, maybe $200K at the peak, when I add up *all* of my expenses. Worth it? Sure, I’ve gotten to live in my place in this fantastic neighborhood *just* how I dreamt 22 years ago; priceless like the commercial goes. Others buying now wanting the same thing as I had/have… not so sure about that.

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  59. “and I would probably stand to make $100k in profit if I sold today, maybe $200K at the peak, when I add up *all* of my expenses.”

    In constant dollars, or nominal?

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  60. Roma–

    I didn’t hate the place on Grant and would consider it . . .but if I remember correctly it was more ‘boxy’ feeling and had more of a 70’s /early 80’s vibe. But you are right: it would also make my list. I just commented that I liked this 1) because I do and 2) because so many people were assuming it was a terrible deal. It is not.

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  61. Normal dollars anon, I don’t have the inclination to adjust it. But, I did add up my property taxes (I save them in a shoe box in the basement), and I’ve paid about $175k over 22 years… I’ll let you do the math on that one which will equal a big f*** from the city/county.

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  62. “…my property taxes…”

    Speaking of, everybody make sure you get those mfers out and postmarked today!

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  63. “Normal dollars anon, I don’t have the inclination to adjust it.”

    Yeah, I avoid it too, with a much shorter holding period. Like the aggregate tax bill, it’s better to avoid thinking about it, since it’s done.

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  64. Thats the problem with the extreme prejudice on this blog and the typical banter about how Lincoln Park is not worth the price. Whenever an LP address gets listed, the entire comment board lights up with people who are angered by the comparatively higher prices. I think Groove77 just cuts and pastes all of his entries. I personally would rather have a hole in my head than live in Bucktown or Lakeview, but thats just me. Assuming they are in no hurry to sell, I bet this place goes for north of 550k. If you check recent sells in teh area thats what they go for.

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  65. “I think Groove77 just cuts and pastes all of his entrie”

    dooode thanks for the time saving idea! i shall be using i going forward.

    “typical banter about how Lincoln Park is not worth the price”

    well really nobody, outside of annony, has given valid reasons why. if a person can explain why, good tactile reasons why, i think the logical folks will move on to banter about something else.

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  66. Oh and BBB,

    for argument sake,
    I did live in LP for a short period and enjoyed it, but could not justify the high price of living there. Not just in housing/rent price but the groceries, dining and shopping all had some unjustified premium attached.

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  67. “So now there’s LP, ELP, SWELP and Optimal LP. I learn so much NONSENSE about Chicago Geography on Crib Chatter.”

    Agreed.

    Reminds me of our friends who claim to live in VELF. Granted they are across from the lake.

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  68. “So now there’s LP, ELP, SWELP and Optimal LP.”

    is LP even that big to break it into subgroups? maybe for school districts but dang thats only three then i think.

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