What You Can Buy in River North for $475,000: A 2/2 Loft at 333 W. Hubbard

333 w hubbard

This 2-bedroom loft in the Union Square Lofts at 333 W. Hubbard in River North just came on the market.

It’s on the 8th floor and faces south with views of the Merchandise Mart.

This is the “old” part of the building.

This unit has 13 foot concrete ceilings and what looks like some exposed brick, but I can’t tell if that’s wallpaper or real or what.

The living room/kitchen has diagonal hardwood floors, a fireplace and a balcony.

The kitchen has black granite counter tops and a mix of stainless steel and black appliances.

There is a unique blue pearl granite floor in the master bedroom which also has a full sized wall and a window.

The second bedroom has 3/4th walls and no window, as is common in many loft units.

It has the features buyers look for including central air, washer/dryer in the unit and the listing says heated garage parking is included in the price.

Is this a good starter home in the popular River North neighborhood?

Sheetal Balani at @Properties has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #809: 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, no square footage listed

  • Sold in June 2004 for $315,250 (the price is a guess as the CCRD data has an input error)
  • Sold in June 2004 for $403,500
  • Currently listed at $475,000 (parking included)
  • Assessments of $934 a month (includes cable, Internet, heat, a/c, doorman, heated garage, lawn care, scavenger, snow removal, exterior maintenance, dog run, bike room)
  • Taxes of $7085
  • Central Air
  • Washer/dryer in the unit
  • Fireplace
  • Bedroom #1: 16×11
  • Bedroom #2: 13×10

29 Responses to “What You Can Buy in River North for $475,000: A 2/2 Loft at 333 W. Hubbard”

  1. This place kind of sucks, apart from the location. If this is the best you can do finding a nice 2/2 for under 500K you may as well concede Riz’s point in the last thread.

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  2. This looks like a pretty typical 2/2 roughly 1,000-1,200 sq ft loft conversion in and around Chicago. Demand for these types of units in prime locations has been high for nearly two decades now. Half a mil is pretty rich but with 10% down it’s roughly $4k a month all PITI+HOA. Easy do in your late 20’s, mid-30’s until the first baby comes along, and suddenly a $4k mortgage seems like a lot when you’re paying close to $2k a month for child care plus other related child expenses. Long term most of these buyers would have just been better of renting.

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  3. ” If this is the best you can do finding a nice 2/2 for under 500K ”

    did you mean in River North or at all?

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  4. @ Sid V & Riz

    Out of curiosity, what would nice a place under $500K look like to you? Regardless of the listing or even sold price, put up a link to a place that doesn’t suck to you, one that you would happily live in. Maybe it isn’t that your expectations are too high, maybe mine are too low.

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  5. This place probably doesn’t get much light for like 6 months out of the year, hence the mirrored backsplash

    I have seen worse places though, this one is at least conveniently located to ‘things’

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  6. I would expect a place at this price to be a bit nicer inside. This place is a mess. There are way too many different types of flooring in for a small place. I hate the diagonal wood flooring, but if you’re going to do that, then do it everywhere. In one room, the floor is diagonal, in another it’s straight. Then, there’s the random room with granite flooring. Ugh.

    Then, there’s the kitchen. Why is there a mirror on the oven? I would also prefer not have to have a back splash than have one that’s a mirror. Also, choose, do you want stainless steel appliances or black appliances? Why buy a stainless stove when the rest of the appliances are black?

    Then, there’s the bathroom. Why do a granite counter top with a marble floor?

    I suppose these things aren’t hugely expensive to fix, but it’s just annoying to have to rip out perfectly good flooring or counter tops just to get the place to have some cohesion. I would have expected that the seller would have taken care of these things (especially the appliances) before putting it on the market.

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  7. Lmao!

    My brother looked at two units in this building in the last year – I went along on the first showing. Pros and cons:

    Pros: location is good, easy access to merch mart brown line. The lobby is cool and they display local artwork that actually doesn’t suck. The closets were big and it had an “authentic loft feel”

    Cons: units aren’t really updated typically. The lower floor units like this one get no light whatsoever. The second bedroom is that “lofted” crap behind the kitchen that nobody wants.

    All that aside, I think the nail in the coffin is the loony assessments. Almost 1 grand is crazy to me.

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  8. lmao –

    My brother has looked at 2 units in this building over the past year.

    Pros: Cool Lobby, door staff was nice. They hang artwork in the lobby that doesn’t suck. Authentic loft feel to building. Location is good.

    Cons: The units we saw needed heavy updating. Kitchens and bathrooms sucked. Floros were beat up. Second bedroom is the ‘lofted’ style that sits behind the kitchen, which also sucks. ASSESSMENTS. ASSESSMENTS. ASSESSMENTS. 1000 bucks for a sub 500k unit? with limited amenities? nuts.

    “Out of curiosity, what would nice a place under $500K look like to you? Regardless of the listing or even sold price, put up a link to a place that doesn’t suck to you, one that you would happily live in. Maybe it isn’t that your expectations are too high, maybe mine are too low.”

    Sure, I’ll bite. a place like this maybe:

    Out of curiosity, what would nice a place under $500K look like to you? Regardless of the listing or even sold price, put up a link to a place that doesn’t suck to you, one that you would happily live in. Maybe it isn’t that your expectations are too high, maybe mine are too low.”

    sure, I’ll bite.

    on the ‘high end’ – something like this…which seems absolutely crazy to me for the price. I’d pay 600 for it..not 750.

    https://www.urbanrealestate.com/property/110-W-Superior-Unit-1402-CHICAGO-IL-60654-6WqFkWd5jW3p.html

    Or on the ‘low end’ – something like this. It’s an average building. It’s an average location in river north. It’s an ‘okay’ unit with decent finished and not a great view of anything. It’s small. But it’s a newer building with decent assesments and amenities. That being said, It’s asking 650 with parking. I feel 550 is more appropriate

    https://www.urbanrealestate.com/property/303-W-Ohio-Unit-2707-CHICAGO-IL-60610-6WqFkWd5kSVt.html

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  9. PS, i realize the units i posted are completely unreasonable for beind under 500 k, my point is that the first one seems crazy for 780k with parking…it would seem realistic in the low to mid 600’s.

    the second one , again, wouldnt expect sub 500 but definitely mid 500’s and not much more.

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  10. For some reason my first post didn’t post. Meh, long story short we looked at units here and the building is kinda blah with super high assessments.

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  11. For some reason my first post didn’t post. Meh, long story short we looked at units here and the building is kinda blah with super high assessments.

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  12. if you do more than one link in your post it has to be approved by sabrina

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  13. Regarding what I find acceptable for 500K (in LP, RN or prime Bucktown as Riz framed the conversation), I don’t think such a place exists for me under 500K anymore as both my expectations and prices have risen over the years. Something like this checks many boxes for me personally as I am OK trading proximity to downtown and amenities for room and lower assessments, yet is rife with compromises: http://tour.vht.com/433463297/2655-n-burling-1s-chicago-il-60614/photos/idx

    Pluses include location, separate room suitable for a media room, parking, private outdoor space, a semblance of a yard, little or no truly necessary work. Compromises include vintage yet no interior character, small kitchen and baths (tiny sink in one of the baths!), limited storage, no real dining area, parking is not in a garage, self-managed condo, no venthood, significant below grade space, average finishes…and that’s just from one quick trip through the photos. Still, it beats the typical small, low-ceilinged highrise unit with 90s fixtures and an 800+ assessment at this price point you get further south.

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  14. Ah, gotcha. This is what I had linked:

    on the ‘high end’ – something like this…which seems absolutely crazy to me for the price. I’d pay 600 for it..not 750.

    https://www.urbanrealestate.com/property/110-W-Superior-Unit-1402-CHICAGO-IL-60654-6WqFkWd5jW3p.html

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  15. Or on the ‘low end’ – something like this. It’s an average building. It’s an average location in river north. It’s an ‘okay’ unit with decent finished and not a great view of anything. It’s small. But it’s a newer building with decent assesments and amenities. That being said, It’s asking 650 with parking. I feel 550 is more appropriate
    https://www.urbanrealestate.com/property/303-W-Ohio-Unit-2707-CHICAGO-IL-60610-6WqFkWd5kSVt.html

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  16. Sid V, that place isn’t bad but duplexes down are a no go for me. Hate feeling like i live in a basement.

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  17. “on the ‘high end’ – something like this…which seems absolutely crazy to me for the price. I’d pay 600 for it..not 750.”

    Featured on theCC!

    http://cribchatter.com/?p=23954

    I recognized the wine fridges in the nursery.

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  18. Haha – anon, I remember now!

    Honestly Do think that place is well worth 600k. but nearly 800 k for parking for 1300 square feet? nuts.

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  19. That building (110 W Superior) was pretty “high end” when it was built, but yes that would seem crazy to me, I wouldn’t want to live at 303 W Ohio either, too noisy

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  20. Riz there’s a lot of guys like your brother and his wife all competing for the same limited number of units. Remember, prices for real estate is set at the fringes, so a few high price (or during the crash, low priced) sales set the price for the entire market. Places like these in slower times would sell for a lot less money.

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  21. Back in the high life? NO… i really don’t think so.
    But, definitely more like Old Style!!!
    Get Jan Terri on her to tell us how it is!!!!
    GO CUBBIES LOLZ!!!!!

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  22. Again good point HD.

    I miss the slow days. I specifically remember that 1 bedrooms in river north were routinely listed for 199k. I looked at a townhouse by the current Groupon building in 2013 for 350k – there was a gross liquor store across from it which turned buyers off. The liquor store is now being replaced by condos and that unit relisted at 650k a little while back.

    I feel like my bro is doomed to rent another year, at least. He’s praying the new construction everywhere will drive prices down but so much of it seems to be rental.

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  23. Totally agree on that 303 W Ohio property Riz. Decent enough unit but the PSF is kind of crazy to me, considering it’s too small to happily share with anyone else long-term. (Others may disagree of course, just my opinion)

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  24. “For some reason my first post didn’t post. Meh, long story short we looked at units here and the building is kinda blah with super high assessments.”

    I say this every time someone complains about “high” assessments. You really have to understand what you’re getting.

    In this case, it includes heat/ac. For a unit this size- with south facing windows which will get nearly all day sun- that’s easily $100 to $200 a month.

    It also includes cable/Internet. How much do you pay for this? Many larger buildings have the deluxe packages which would be $150 for cable plus another $50 for the high speed internet if you paid for it yourself in your 3-unit new build in Lincoln Park. So add on another $200.

    I think this assessment also includes the garage assessment. Do you think it heats itself all winter? This costs money too. It’s probably $25 to $50 a month.

    Add that all up and you’re talking $350 on the low end and $450 a month on the high end.

    The assessments are $934. Subtracting those costs, they don’t seem so high to me for a building that is all brick, with a doorman, with an interior courtyard that also must be maintained.

    But I know many of you don’t live in high rises, never see the budgets, and don’t understand that someone to get your Amazon packages every day costs money.

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  25. @ Riz

    110 W. Superior #1402. Nice wall of glass, corner unit, balcony, clean lines, nice. Not my style as I’m not a high rise person, but I get it. When the unit/building was new, it looks like the first owners paid $585K for it in 8/10, not sure if that was with or without parking. I’m guessing the selling price was a bit depressed with the recession in full gear, but who knows. So 7 years later in a robust housing market, you feel today it’s worth what the first owners paid for it during hard times… plus $15K. Fair enough.

    303 W. Ohio #2707. Wall of glass, corner unit, balcony, not as nice as the first, but still I see the attraction. When the unit/building was new, it looks like the first owners paid $491K for it in 9/09, it appears the parking was included(?). Again, perhaps the selling price was a bit depressed then, depths of the recession, whatever. 8 years later, still robust housing market, you feel today it’s worth $550K, or $59K more than the first owners paid for it during hard times; isn’t that like 1.5% or something appreciation per year? Again, fair enough.

    I have nothing to say and I’d rather leave it to the court of public opinion. That said, I wish you the best of luck on your search.

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  26. “Again, perhaps the selling price was a bit depressed then, depths of the recession, whatever. 8 years later, still robust housing market, you feel today it’s worth $550K, or $59K more than the first owners paid for it during hard times; isn’t that like 1.5% or something appreciation per year? Again, fair enough.”

    The Silver Tower at 303 W Ohio was built as an “affordable” condo tower. 1-bedrooms were in the low $200,000s. The largest 2-bedroom units in the building were just slightly over $400,000.

    It was never meant to be “luxury” or the higher price point.

    But, apparently, it has become that.

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  27. Luxury doesn’t translate with affordable. Buildings with 1BRs in sub 200s these days are basically targets for condo deconversion.

    Best example of that is 182 W Lake is next up to bat with a 65m deconversion offer. They could have paid 80-100k per unit 3-5 years ago for this building. Now they are going to cough up 200k/unit to compete in a much more competitive apartment market. Regardless, thats a major discount to the 600k/unit paid at 111 w wacker. It’s an absolute no brainer to purchase this building considering it neighbors Ogilvie and sits on top of the L AND is surrounded by corporate + walking distance to RN nightlife.

    As I said, if it’s under median and close to city center, it’s going to get bought up. These firms are using very simple algos, and now your average joe has access to these algos with crowdfunded real estate platforms. If it’s in the city the algo is filtering for properties based on distance to city center / price at or under median. If it’s in the burbs it is based on distance to railroad station / price at or under median.

    Next up for an uptick in appreciation is homes at or below median in the suburbs, and once self driving cars become a thing, I cannot stress this even more. A self driven commute greatly reduces the utility of living in the city as you age and have kids.

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  28. Is anonidgaf an owner of units at Century Tower or just trolling when comparing Crain’s report of a $200K/unit offer to deconvert 85 yr old Century Tower/182 W Lake to Heitman paying $600K/unit for newly constructed 111 W Wacker? And then posting “These firms are using very simple algos…”

    Forget ‘algos’ – imo Heitman paid up b/c units @ well amenitized 111 are renting for $3.64 psf (& Heitman received title to 25K sf of well located retail space renting for $5 psf net). Century Tower’s a very poorly located dump. Sitting on top of L, adjacent S on Lake & W on Wells is not a positive for value. (Read Yelp – ‘very very loud’, ‘creepy streetscape’, and then a positive ‘laundry room is clean’.). Rent is likely well below $1.80 psf & deconverter, if successful, will need to invest multi-millions to bring building into this century – new mechanicals etc. But ceiling hts will always be 18″ or 2′ lower than newer buildings & where would any new amenities go?

    Finally “..if it’s under median and close to city center, it’s going to get bought up.” Owners (particularly owner occupants) have a bigger say than anonidgaf in deciding to sell. Ime deconversion attempts generally fail unless large % of owners are accidental investors or owners face an imminent large special ass’t to fix deferred problems.

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  29. “Regardless, thats a major discount to the 600k/unit paid at 111 w wacker. It’s an absolute no brainer to purchase this building considering it neighbors Ogilvie and sits on top of the L AND is surrounded by corporate + walking distance to RN nightlife.”

    It doesn’t “neighbor” Ogilvie (that train station is blocks away.) Lol.

    This building was apartments for years. It got converted right at the height of the market but it was too late into the cycle. I’ve been in the building. It’s fine for rentals (yes- two EL lines go right past the building.)

    In order to compete in this rental market, the new owner will have to bring it up to the levels that everyone else in the loop expects. And then they have to get higher than previous rents in the building in a market where 8,000 to 10,000 brand new apartments with great, modern layouts and no El train are also coming on the market.

    Seems pretty risky to me.

    It seems risky for anyone to buy these big towers to do conversions right now.

    But real estate developers always think the good times will last forever. 10 years ago it was condos. In 2017 it’s apartments.

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