Unique Duplex In Carl Street Studios in Old Town

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Looking for something outside of the white box high rise?

Look no further than 155 W. Burton, the Carl Street Studios.  Only 16 units, the complex was built in 1922 with unique duplex and triplex units, many with interesting terraces and rooftop decks.  The complex has a lovely interior courtyard.  The units have a cool vintage feel, with leaded glass and colored staircases. 

Unit #15: 2 bedroom, 2 baths,  1600 square feet, large private rooftop terrace

  • Currently listed at $699,000
  • Previously sold in November 2005 for $635,000

There is no parking available.  Assessments are $791 a month. 

Cara Buffa at Sudler Sotheby’s has the listing.

14 Responses to “Unique Duplex In Carl Street Studios in Old Town”

  1. We have to make our own fun since Sabrina is gone, so… does anyone know what happened to this unit? It has an elaborate zillow page, but it is not listed in mls, and it doesn’t look like it sold. I imagine it rented out; is there any way to find out? And if so, for how much?

    The Carl Street Studios are extraordinary… but as beautiful as they are, they are a hard sell. This unit, for instance, is a triplex. And though they list it as 1600 sq ft, much of that is taken up by the staircases, and odd little nooks and crannies. I also suspect they are including the deck in sq. footage (though it would be hard to tell without seeing it.

    As unique and cool as this place is, without parking or W/D, I’m guessing it is more like a $450K place. Does anyone else have an opinion?

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  2. There was discussion about the Carl Street Studios under a post about a neighboring property on Burton a month or so ago. I can’t recall the details, however. Maybe the search will turn something up.

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  3. I do remember the discussion; it was basically about how cool the Carl St. Studios were, in contrast to what was actually being highlighted in the post. :) So, what do you think? What do you think this unit is worth? (By the way, you can see it on zillow without registering! :) I think. I’m probably already registered with zillow, as with every other r.e. site in the world…)

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  4. Based solely on size, it seems to me that a fair price would be more like $500K. It might rent around $2500, but I haven’t looked closely at rents since summer 2007.

    This is slightly out of the area I was searching (elementary school quality drops dramatically crossing LaSalle), but my property search data is probably relevant here. I was looking at 2-3BR condos in Gold Coast (specifically Oak-North, lake-LaSalle), and recorded all that were active on the MLS between March and June 7th. Most of these did not include parking (some had a separate price or monthly fee, others had none at all).

    I calculated the price per sqft, assessment per sqft, and the present value of the price plus assessment per sqft (assuming a 5% discount rate) for all these properties. The medians were $340 (price), $0.58 (assm), and $483 (PV) per sqft. The 30% percentiles were $296, $0.53, and $443 per sqft. Since these are listing prices, not closing prices, you want a particularly low price.

    At $699K, $791/mo, and 1600sqft, this unit was at the 99%ile for price/sqft, 23%ile for assm/sqft, and 90%ile for PV/sqft. At $500K, these are reduced to 36%ile, 23%ile, and 28%ile.

    The places that were selling in my list seemed to be below 30%ile (and the place we bought was actually 24%ile for PV/sqft).

    I’m not sure that the “cool” factor provides much help for prices these days, but I expect that it would help attract lookers and maybe buyers. It certainly is better than being one of a flock of condos on the market from the same building (e.g., 1250 N Dearborn).

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  5. Now THAT is an answer! :) Thanks for the analysis, Kevin! I’d have said $500, as well, except for the fact that so much sq footage is lost to the stairwells (and, as I said, I suspect they are including the deck).

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  6. Kevin, wow! great analysis, thanks! especially useful for me – we’re looking for the same type of RE and exactly in the area you mentioned.

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  7. how did you calculate the present value? price + (annual assesment/5%)?

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  8. “how did you calculate the present value? price + (annual assesment/5%)?”

    Exactly. (Actually price + monthly assm*240.)

    This gives a fairly low estimate for the future cost of the assessment. The basic assumption is that the assessment does not increase, needs to be paid forever, and you’re indifferent between paying $100 today, $105 a year from now, and $110.25 two years from now (this is the 5% discount rate). Given that assessments are likely to increase, I’m effectively assuming that assessments will grow at a rate 5% lower than inflation (or interest).

    Other assumptions that will give the same present value:
    * Perpetuity, growing 5% slower than the interest rate
    * 20 year timeframe, growing at the interest rate
    * 10 year timeframe, growing 11% faster than the interest rate

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  9. Unit 15 at Carl Street Studios was pulled from the market and is presently being rented. I do not know the monthly rental. I have been in that unit numerous times and I do not think the 1600 sf includes the roof deck, which is itself roughly 250-300 sf. It is a spectacular space and in fairly good shape, given that it was “home made” by a bunch of artists using reclaimed materials.

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  10. Thanks for the update, Keith. I love this building. Nothing much for sale, though. Do you know how long Unit 15 has been rented for? Does anyone know what the rental price is/was?

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  11. Kenworthey:

    I thought you might be interested in this rental in Old Town. The building is on Schiller but it’s similar in style to the Carl Street Studios with the art deco interior.

    Check it out on Craigslist.

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  12. Sabrina–only just now saw your note!

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