The Pink Palace Is Hot: A 2/2 at 5555 N. Sheridan in Edgewater

5555-n-sheridan

If you drive down Lake Shore Drive from the north, you can’t help but notice the Pink Palace, aka the Edgewater Beach Apartments, at 5555 N. Sheridan in Edgewater.

Built in 1929 with 300 units, it’s a full amenity building with a doorman, extensive gardens and a pool.

The building is a co-0p and requires 20% down.

But that hasn’t stopped sales in 2015.

There are 13 units currently on the market and 9 of them are already under contract.

This 1700 square feet 2-bedroom is one of the few still available.

It has multiple exposures, including the lake, and an entry foyer.

The unit has a mix of carpet and hardwood floors.

The listing says it has a “remodeled kitchen” with dark cabinets and stainless steel appliances.

There is no central air and no in-unit washer/dryer.

Parking is leased in the building for between $105 and $250 a month.

The assessment includes heat, gas, cable and taxes.

Is it a sign of a healthy market when the 20% down co-ops start selling again?

Ruth Rankin at Baird & Warner has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #715: 2 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, 1700 square feet, co-op

  • I don’t have a prior sales price because it’s a co-op
  • Came on the market in April 2015 for $350,000
  • Assessments of $1422 a month (includes heat, gas, doorman, cable, pool and taxes)
  • Taxes included in HOA
  • 20% down only
  • No central air
  • No in-unit washer/dryer- coin laundry in the building
  • Parking available for lease for between $105 to $250 a month
  • Bedroom #1: 13×16
  • Bedroom #2: 18×13
  • Living room: 14×24

27 Responses to “The Pink Palace Is Hot: A 2/2 at 5555 N. Sheridan in Edgewater”

  1. What happened in the dining room? Looks like a body bag. Perhaps a mishap with one of those knives (swords?) mounted on the wall?

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  2. Laura Louzader on April 30th, 2015 at 6:46 am

    This is a much bigger unit than the typical 2 bed in this bldg , and it has been upgraded beautifully.

    This building goes through periods of being “hot” and others where you can scarcely unload the places. Most of the units are rather bland and boring relative to those in other 20s-vintage buildings, but each unit has a huge storage space just outside its back door that could almost be a room in itself, and the building itself is a great little community, with beautiful grounds, a pool, and even a little library to which residents can contribute. The surrounding neighborhood is pretty solid, and a lot of fun, with the beach nearby, and Bryn Mawr Ave populated with more restaurants.

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  3. 8 foot ceilings, coin laundry 8 floors below, high assessments? Gosh, sign me up for 2 units I’m pissin my pants with excitement over this one!

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    Rating: +10 (from 14 votes)
  4. The HOA (after taking out the taxes) is more than the mortgage!

    Yes, I know that includes heat/water/cable that add up to a bunch of money for other people, but that’s also expenses that you have *zero* control over.

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  5. High assessments? Remember, this is a co-op, so assessments include taxes–as mentioned. Most $350K units in Chicago would have taxes of at least $6,000, give or take, so subtracting that leaves a $900 assessment covering heat, doorman and pool. Actually pretty reasonable for a 1700 square foot unit—so we’ll probably hear from people who way that this assessment can’t be putting away enough reserves to maintain an older building!

    I don’t disagree about coin laundry, low ceilings, as well as drawback of leased parking, and the concerns about people around here not really understanding co-ops.

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  6. I like the concept of buildings that require 20% down.

    The idea of no central air or in unit washer/dryer kills this place. Does this building allow installation of washer/dryers?

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  7. “Most $350K units in Chicago would have taxes of at least $6,000”

    yes, but if you look at the listing, the taxes for this place are $713.

    So, subtracting the *correct* amount leaves you with–wait for it…

    wait for it….

    an HOA that is **more than the mortgage!**

    Oh, right, already said that.

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  8. Beating a dead horse here, but there are obviously better buys, especially with the excessive HOA fees in this building. I personally find the building to be quite ugly too. The tarp in the dining room is also very concerning…I really want to know what (or who) is hiding under there!

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  9. ” and the concerns about people around here not really understanding co-ops.”

    I understand they use to be to keep the poors and minorities out.

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  10. Most $350K units in Chicago would have taxes of at least $6,000

    not if owner occupied… they would be around 4k

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  11. how are the taxes $8550 on this place? Something not right

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  12. oh that is $713 per year not per month, damn you senior exemptions lol!

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  13. Looked into this building 14 years ago, and was told that there was a special assessment that was being levied at the time. It’s possible there’s been another one in that time, hence the high assessments.

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  14. “special assessment”

    That would affect one’s … uh … assessment of the amount of the … assessment.

    But don’t many realtors play games with the specials in order to not scare people off before they even look?

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  15. When we looked there in 2000, the units were dirt cheap. Whoever I spoke to explained that the special assessment was the reason for the low prices. So maybe back then, the realtor wasn’t concerned about playing games.

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  16. “Looked into this building 14 years ago, and was told that there was a special assessment that was being levied at the time. It’s possible there’s been another one in that time, hence the high assessments.”

    Aren’t we done with this SAME argument every single time there’s a vintage building?

    1. It’s a co-op. It includes the real estate taxes
    2. It was built in 1929 and is a full service building with 300 units. That’s a LOT of maintenance. There’s a pool. There are 2 acres of gardens. There’s a parking garage. There’s long hallways that have to be heated and painted. There are doormen. And on and on and on.

    I just saw a 2/2 that is only about 15 years old in Printers Row with an assessment of $737 a month. That doesn’t include the taxes. What’s “expensive” now?

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  17. “I understand they use to be to keep the poors and minorities out.”

    Actually, no. At the time of the Great Depression when these buildings went into bankruptcy, the tenants decided to buy out the building mortgage. The only legal entity available was the co-op – where they ALL bought the building (i.e. bought just a “share” of the building) and split everything else, including taxes.

    The “condominium” entity didn’t come into existence until decades later. I’m sure there are some real estate attorneys on here who could fill us in.

    Condos, as we know them, didn’t exist in 1929. These building were all built as apartments. Yes- rentals for the rich. The whole concept of the “American Dream” through home ownership didn’t exist.

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  18. “8 foot ceilings, coin laundry 8 floors below, high assessments? Gosh, sign me up for 2 units I’m pissin my pants with excitement over this one!”

    They’re having no trouble selling these Sonies as 9 out of 13 of those on the market are under contract. And that’s WITH 20% down.

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  19. Laura Louzader on May 1st, 2015 at 3:57 am

    There was a massive special assessment in this building c. 2000, and I heard about it from a city employee who delivered a class on condo & co-op ownership. It seems like about 40 years of deferred maintenance caught up with the place around 2000, what with the stucco exterior walls beginning to delaminate, and the pool, garage, and other expensive common elements in a state of advanced deterioration.

    This situation was no doubt due to assessments being kept too low for a long time, because I viewed a place there with the idea of buying in the late 90s (before deciding my personal situation was just too unstable at that time to buy),and was struck by how low the monthly HOA was for 2 bed unit. I suppose the association was kicking the can on essential repairs and had been doing so for decades, which is why I am very suspicious of low assessments in vintage buildings, especially when heat and a high level of service are included.

    According to this woman, the building needed something like $40M worth of repairs, and was able, as a historic landmark, to obtain federal, state, and city grants that covered about half the costs, leaving the owners with the other half, that averaged out to $40,000 a unit, which was still a very steep hit for the middle-to-upper-middle income unit owners, many of whom were forced to sell at distressed prices, explaining why there were so many units available in the place 2000- 2010 at very low prices. Were it not for all the government welfare, the prices would have dropped much lower.

    I searched for documentation of all this, and was very vexed to find almost none, and would be very grateful to see written documentation of who picked up what costs here. I would really love to get all the facts around the rehabilitation of that building at that time- what were the exact costs and how much exactly was subsidized and to what extent, but can find very little in the way of factual information beyond what this woman told me.

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  20. ‘I just saw a 2/2 that is only about 15 years old in Printers Row with an assessment of $737 a month. That doesn’t include the taxes.”

    And if it included the taxes that are on this place, that assessment would *still* be under $800/month. The assessments here are over 75% higher than that.

    It may be necessary, it may even be 100% defensible. That doesn’t make them “not high”.

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  21. Co-ops were a European concept that never fully translated across the Atlantic. The whole idea smacks of “socialism” to many American homeowners in a way that condo ownership does not. I predict that sometime by the middle of this century nearly all co-op buildings in the USA will become condominiums (as has been the case with a few buildings in Chicago), if for no other reason than to attract young buyers who can’t wrap their heads around the co-op concept. A building with empty apartments, left behind as part of their residents’ estates, is not a good thing.

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  22. Laura Louzader on May 1st, 2015 at 1:53 pm

    I wonder, Gayle.

    I used to believe that the condominium arrangement was better than the co-op, because the individual owners have more autonomy and it is easier to obtain financing for a purchase. A condo owner doesn’t need the Board’s approval to sell a unit

    However, after witnessing the Credit Rampage of the 00s, and seeing the number of extremely distressed condo buildings in this city that have been damaged financially by defaults and foreclosures, I am no longer so sure, and begin to think that cooperatives have advantages that offset the disadvantages.

    The main advantage is what most people hate, which is the high down payment or all-cash requirement, AND the ability of the board to qualify prospective buyers. I have decided that that’s not such a bad thing- you can make sure prospective buyers can afford to be there and meet their obligations, and you can also protect your building from becoming encumbered with the 2nd mortgages and HELOXS that drove so many buyers into default and foreclosure, and left so many condo associations financially endangered by unpaid assessments.

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  23. Laura – one way to minimize defaults, etc. is to de-certify the building for FHA/VA financing. That way a buyer has to come up with at least 5% down payment for conventional financing, rather than 3.5% for FHA and % for VA. FHA will no longer do “spot approvals” for one unit in a building that is not FHA-approved.

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  24. “It may be necessary, it may even be 100% defensible. That doesn’t make them “not high”.”

    The taxes are somewhere between $400 and $500 a month for the Edgewater Apartment unit. So take $737 and add $400. That’s $1137. I said that they were STILL a few hundred dollars more but the building has an indoor pool which always adds on costs to maintain/insure and it has 2 acres of gardens. The building on Wells has neither of those two things.

    So are they “not high”?

    Not really. Not compared to other comparable buildings (amenities and taxes.) It’s a co-op, not a condo. The property taxes are included.

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  25. “The property taxes are included.”

    $60 a month. *Sixty*.

    If this unit paid taxes at “fair value”, then the assessment would be over $1800 a month.

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  26. Laura Louzader on May 9th, 2015 at 10:02 pm

    Gayle, I agree with you on FHA-VA certification. I’d rather my bldg did not have it, and at the current time, it does not, thanks to low owner-occupancy.

    However,the lack of that certification means lower “values” for the units, a trade-off I’m willing to accept, but most people are not.

    Also, new loan programs are being promulgated by the two big government-backed mortgage buyers, Fannie and Freddie, that will make it possible to not only get a loan with no money down, but with your closing costs remitted to you as well. This home buyer welfare program is being pushed by our powers in their never-ending quest to fire up another housing bubble and keep values at nose-bleed levels, whether the buyers can afford the loans or not. This means that buyers in new condo developments especially, will be exposed financially in buildings heavily stacked with over-mortgaged buyers.

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  27. Laura – I am aware of Fannie and Freddie programs that allow for 5% or 3% down payments to credit-worthy buyers. I am not familiar with the give-back program you’ve described. There is a new program like this through the State of Illinois IHDA program that is similar to last year’s “Welcome Home Heroes” program for veterans, but this applies to civilians and can be used for second-time as well as first-time buyers.

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