Will the Abbott Estate Sell for Double Its 2004 Price? 4605 N. Hermitage in Ravenswood

4605 n Hermitage approved

The Abbott Estate at 4605 N. Hermitage in the Ravenswood neighborhood of Uptown recently came on the market.

If it looks familiar, it’s because we chattered about it in 2010 after it had been on the market during the Great Recession years in 2009 and 2010.

You can see our chatter here (where some of you advocated tearing this down and building something new).

This is a unique north side property.

Built in 1891 for the founder of Abbott Labs, this Victorian is on an oversized 92×165 corner lot (which is nearly an acre), and has a wrap around porch.

The house is 7000 square feet.

It also has an updated carriage house. In 2010 they were renting it out for $2400 a month. The current listing doesn’t say that it is rented.

In 2010, the listing said the home had updated bathrooms and mechanicals. The current listing says it has been “modernized.”

The kitchen has white cabinets and stainless steel appliances.

5 bedrooms are on the second floor with the master suite is on the top floor.

In 2010, the basement was unfinished but now the space has drywall and carpeting and a rec room, exercise room, work room and playroom.

There’s space pak cooling.

In the last hot market, in 2006, the house sold in only about a month for just $39,000 under the list price.

But in 2009, it didn’t sell until February 2011.

We’re back in a hot market again but the house is listed for more than double the 2004 price.

How long will it take to sell this time?

Julie Dorger at Coldwell Banker has the listing. See the pictures here.

4605 N. Hermitage: 6 bedrooms, 6 bathrooms, 7000 square feet

  • Sold in May 2004 for $1.5 million
  • Sold in October 2006 for $1.95 million
  • Originally listed in August 2009
  • Was listed in November 2009 at $2.338 million
  • Reduced
  • Listed in September 2010 for $1,999,999
  • Reduced
  • Was listed in October 2010 at $1,799,000
  • Sold in February 2011 for $1,606,000
  • Currently listed at $3.449 million
  • Taxes are now $16,141 (they were $18268 in October 2010)
  • Space Pak cooling
  • Rental carriage house
  • There’s now a 2-car garage
  • Bedroom #1: 18×17 (third floor)
  • Bedroom #2: 20×16 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #3: 19×16 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #4: 16×12 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #5: 12×11 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #6: 16×12 (second floor)
  • Recreation room: 44×15 (basement)
  • Exercise room: 20×19 (basement)
  • Work room: 12×11 (basement)
  • Playroom: 23×13 (basement)

How Hot Is This Market? Selling 3 Months Later at 474 N. Lake Shore Drive in Streeterville

474 n lake shore drive approved

This 3-bedroom in 474 N. Lake Shore Drive in Streeterville just came on the market.

It has south and west views from the 49th floor with views of the Lake, River, the city and Trump Tower.

At 1600 square feet, the unit has Brazilian cherry floors in the living/dining area.

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

The unit has central air, washer/dryer in the unit and parking is available in the building for $30,000.

It actually just sold last year, in November 2015, for $612,000, including the parking.

Now listed at $655,000, with the parking, and with no new major renovations done to it since the last sale, is this going to test just how hot this market really is?

Cheri Cho at MC Realty has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #4908: 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, 1600 square feet

  • Sold in October 2006 for $721,500 (included the parking)
  • Sold in November 2015 for $612,000 (included the parking)
  • Currently listed for $625,000 (parking at $30,000 extra)
  • Assessments of $1182 a month (includes doorman, cable, clubhouse, exercise room, pool, exterior maintenance, lawn care, scavenger, snow removal)
  • Taxes of $8619
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Bedroom #1: 12×12
  • Bedroom #2: 12×14
  • Bedroom #3: 12×11


A Smart Tech Home Relists: From Affordable to Luxury? 900 N. Richmond in West Town

This 4-bedroom single family home at 900 N. Richmond in the East Humboldt Park neighborhood of West Town recently came on the market.

This is a “Smart Tech” home. These were built all over the up-and-coming neighborhoods starting around 2010.

The developer bought up a lot of foreclosures, which were cheaper, and built 4-bedroom single family homes that had the same modern design and layout.

It was called “Smart Tech” because the floors were flaxseed sealed oak hardwoods and they used no VOC paint. There were also LEED appointments.

Because they were in up and coming neighborhoods, the price points were usually attractive.

We first chattered about one of these homes in 2010 with this home at 1214 N. Rockwell in West Town.

1214 n rockwell approved

You can see our chatter here (where everyone debated the merits of this neighborhood).

But I’ve also seen these homes in Avondale and also ran across one in Bucktown. They all have a similar exterior and interior design.

Here’s one in Avondale:

Smart Tech home in Avondale 2012

Here’s another home in Bucktown:

Smart Tech home in Bucktown 2012

This home at 900 N. Richmond was built in 2014 on a standard 25×125 lot.

It has the same open concept as the others, with living room, dining room and kitchen on the main floor along with a floating stair case.

The kitchen has modern white and gray gloss cabinets, quartz counter tops and stainless steel appliances. There is also a kitchen island.

3 of the 4 bedrooms are upstairs and the master bedroom has an ensuite bath.

The fourth bedroom and the recreation room are in the lower level.

There’s a two-car garage, a concrete patio and a pergola. It is a corner lot so the yard is also fenced in.

These were meant to be “starter” homes for those who otherwise might have bought a townhouse or a condo. They usually sold for under $500,000 and as low as the mid $300,000s in certain neighborhoods.

The one on Rockwell was listed for $369,000 in 2010 and sold in March 2011 for the list price but it was on a smaller than average Chicago lot of 24×102 so there wasn’t much of a back yard.

This house is listed for 31% more than the 2014 purchase price of $449,000 at $589,000.

Are Smart Tech homes now luxury homes?

Karen Biazar at North Clybourn Group has the listing. See the pictures here.

900 N. Richmond: 4 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, 2400 square feet, 2 car garage

  • Sold in December 2000 for $357,000
  • Lis pendens filed in January 2012
  • Sold in December 2012 for $65,000
  • New construction home sold in April 2014 for $449,000
  • Originally listed in October 2015 for $589,900
  • Withdrawn in December 2015
  • Re-listed in February 2016 for $589,000
  • Taxes of $6145
  • Central Air
  • Bedroom #1: 15×12 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #2: 14×9 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #3: 10×10 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #4: 15×10 (lower level)
  • Recreation Room: 13×33 (lower level)


Rare Open Concept Living in a Vintage Lincoln Park Building: A 3-Bedroom at 2608 N. Lakeview

400 w deming approved

This 3-bedroom in The Marlborough at 2608 N. Lakeview in East Lincoln Park just came on the market.

Built in 1912, The Marlborough is one of the original grand dames of Lincoln Park, with park and pond views.

This unit has seen a complete overhaul since its last sale in 2014.

The listing says it has new hardwood floors, electric, windows and copper pipes.

Most interestingly of all, the kitchen wall was busted open to make an open living concept floor plan with a large kitchen peninsula overlooking the family room/den.

The kitchen has white cabinets and 2 inch Brazilian Quartzite on the peninsula and stainless steel appliances.

There’s also a Dual 48 bottle wine cooler.

The bedrooms have walk-in Elfa closets and ensuite bathrooms.

The third bedroom, as it is in many of these larger vintage units, used to be the maid’s room. They have installed a wall of storage which includes a murphy bed (be sure to check out the pictures in the listing.)

The unit has in-unit washer/dryer and zoned, split cooling system with remote controls but there’s no parking with this building. It is rental in the neighborhood.

Despite its renovation, it still has some of its vintage features like crown molding and a decorative fireplace.

Is the open concept living a vast improvement on this vintage unit or will vintage buyers be turned off?

Christopher Sterling at @Properties has the listing. See the pictures here.

You can also see the 2014 listing pictures here.

Unit #4C: 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, 2200 square feet

  • Sold in 1986 (no price listed)
  • Sold in May 2014 for $530,000
  • Currently listed for $749,900
  • Assessments of $1796 a month (includes gas, cable, exterior maintenance, lawn care, scavenger, snow removal)
  • Taxes of $9851
  • Zoned cooling system
  • In-unit washer/dryer
  • No parking- but available to rent in the neighborhood for $240 a month
  • Bedroom #1: 17×12
  • Bedroom #2: 16×12
  • Bedroom #3: 12×6


From Short Sale to New Record High Price in 4 Years: 2007 W. Belmont in North Center

2007 w belmont

This top floor 3-bedroom at 2007 W. Belmont in North Center was recently re-listed after it was briefly on the market late last summer.

If it looks familiar, that’s because we actually did chatter about it in 2012 when it was a short sale.

See the 2012 chatter here.

Back then, many of you debated whether this was Lake View, Lakeview, Roscoe Village or North Center.

You also wondered what someone would do with a master suite that was 25×18 (or 450 square feet).

If you recall, the unit was new construction in 2006 with crown molding, wainscoting and hardwood floors throughout.

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

The listing again says it has 11 foot ceilings (sorry all you doubters!).

This is an elevator building with 8 units. In 2012, some of you wondered about future assessments to pay for elevator maintenance, but 4 years later the monthly assessments aren’t much higher than they were in 2012.

Belmont west of Ashland used to be considered very far west, but in the last few years, new construction has stretched down Belmont all the way to Western Avenue.

This unit is listed for $76,000 more than the 2006 price.

Will it get the premium now that the neighborhood is gentrifying even further?

Charles Drehmer at Charles Drehmer has the listing. See the pictures here.

Or you can see it at the Open House: Sat Feb 13 from 12 PM- 3 PM.

Unit #4W: 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, 2000 square feet

  • Sold in August 2006 for $493,000
  • Lis pendens foreclosure filed in March 2011
  • Was listed in May 2012 as a “short sale” for $424,900 (parking appears to be included)
  • Sold in October 2012 for $400,000 (included the parking)
  • Originally listed in August 2015 for $569,000
  • Withdrawn in September 2015
  • Currently listed for $569,000
  • Assessments now $368 a month (they were $320 a month in 2012) – includes exterior maintenance, scavenger, snow removal
  • Taxes now $7289 (they were $7135 in 2012)
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Bedroom #1: 25×18
  • Bedroom #2: 14×11
  • Bedroom #3: 15×12
  • Deck: 26×6

Always Wanted to Live in River North’s Blue Building? A 2-Bedroom at 110 W. Superior

110 w superior

This southeast corner 2-bedroom in 110 W. Superior in River North just came on the market.

Many people know this building because of its blue windows.

Constructed in 2008, it has just 58 units.

This unit has city views and brand new hardwood floors throughout.

The kitchen has modern wood cabinets with stainless steel appliances and stone countertops.

There are electronic shades in the bedrooms.

It has in-unit washer/dryer, central air and garage parking is included in the price.

Listed for $213,900 more than the 2011 purchase price, at $749,900, how high will prices rise in River North?

Ron Ehlers at Jameson Sotheby’s has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #1201: 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1225 square feet

  • Sold in June 2011 for $536,000 (included the parking)
  • Currently listed for $749,900 (includes the parking)
  • Assessments of $636 a month (includes doorman, exercise room, exterior maintenance, scavenger, snow removal)
  • Taxes of $7312
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Bedroom #1: 11×11
  • Bedroom #2: 11×11


Market Conditions: Will Demographics Doom the Suburban Housing Markets?

606 trail on Bloomingdale in Bucktown August 2015

Inventory  at 9-year lows in the city of Chicago, and prices are soaring in many neighborhoods, but not so in the Chicago suburbs, including some of the “prestige” suburbs like Burr Ridge, Lake Forest and Glencoe.

From the Chicago Tribune:

On Chicago’s Near North Side, Dr. Richard Green, a veterinarian, and his wife, Willie, a seventh-grade teacher, sold their longtime home in Glencoe last year and bought a condo off North Lake Shore Drive.

The empty nesters wanted to move downtown to be closer to their first grandchild, and looked at more than 15 properties.

The condo they decided on had been on the market for only a day or two when they saw it, and within days, they bought it, said Stacy Karel, the couple’s @properties agent.

Richard Green said it took them two to three months to sell the Glencoe house, where he lived for 35 years and “we settled on a price which I was not happy about.”

Indeed, the Glencoe housing market slipped last year.

The median price of a Glencoe home last year fell by 0.1 percent to $894,000. The typical home in that north Cook County suburb was on the market for 134 days, up from 124 days in 2014. Glencoe sellers typically received 90 percent of their asking price, down from 91.3 percent in 2014.

Where is everyone moving to?

Apparently, buyers are looking in Chicago and pushing west. Those priced out of North Center are going to Irving Park. If you can’t afford Bucktown, you move to Logan Square. And those who can’t afford the hottest neighborhood in the country, Ukrainian Village, are heading to Humboldt Park.

The 606 is becoming an attractive selling point as well.

It has been eight months since the opening of The 606, and the $95 million urban park with its 2.7-mile trail appears to be giving a jolt to Humboldt Park’s real estate market.

Median prices for the Chicago neighborhood’s single-family homes and condominiums last year increased 62 percent and 184 percent, respectively, according to data from the Chicago Association of Realtors.

It’s hardly the only city neighborhood or suburban housing market that turned in a sparkling 2015 performance. In fact, there were pockets of good news to the north, west and southwest, but Humboldt Park stood out.

Take a home in the 1300 block of North Maplewood Avenue in Humboldt Park, one of four neighborhoods, along with Wicker Park, Logan Square and Bucktown, that host The 606.

Mario Greco, an agent at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices KoenigRubloff Realty Group, said the property’s original list price on March 1 was $799,000. It was under contract by March 17 and sold for $800,000.

“It had tons of activity, way more than a similar property would have had in the past,” when it might have taken more than 100 days to sell, Greco said.

“Bucktown was already a desirable neighborhood, so The 606 has had a minimal positive effect on it — in fact, maybe potentially negative for properties right up against it, now that people are peering into their windows or looking down into their yards,” Greco said. But “as you get west of Western Avenue, the positive effect on property values and neighborhood desirability goes up because of The 606.”

Is the slowdown in the housing markets in the older, baby boomer suburbs just a temporary phenomena or are we seeing a sea change like that of the 1960s, when city dwellers packed up and moved to the suburbs for a better life, only now it’s reversed?

Or is it simply demographics? Too many baby boomers retiring and wanting out of aging, large homes, only there aren’t enough buyers for them all.

Hot Neighborhoods: Humboldt Park and West Pullman among areas showing gains [Chicago Tribune, Becky Yerak, February 5, 2016]

The Penthouse at 444 W. Belmont in East Lakeview is Back for Double the Price

444 w belmont approved

The 2-bedroom penthouse unit at 444 W. Belmont in East Lakeview just came on the market.

I love it when “old” properties return to Crib Chatter. We have chattered about this penthouse unit 4 times before.

It first appeared on Crib Chatter in August 2008 when it was listed for $825,000.

Here are the pictures of the kitchen and terrace from that listing.



August 2008 was before Lehman blew up so the housing bubble hadn’t yet busted.

You can see that chatter here.

It never sold.

By 2010, the unit was bank owned and we chattered about it again.

The kitchen and baths are intact but as you can see in this picture, compared with the August 2008 listing, the shiny Viking stove has been replaced with a white model. There is a family room attached to the kitchen.

I’ve been informed that there are some light fixtures missing and some cosmetic touchups to a wall will need to be done due to recent tuck pointing. The roof was also, apparently, checked recently.

I’ve also been informed by the agent that all assessments are paid and there are no back taxes, liens or assessments outstanding. Unlike a short sale, the closing can be done quickly- like a “normal” closing.

Here are some pictures from that listing:

444-w-belmont-_7b-kitchen-approved #2

444-w-belmont-_7b-deck-approved #2

It finally sold in 2011 for $311,000 with homedelete taking home the honors for saying it would ultimately sell for less than the 2000 purchase price of $383,000.

Now, 5 years later, the unit has come back on the market for more than double what it last sold for. It is listed at $675,000.

It is also $225,000 more than #6B which is listed at $450,000 and has already gone under contract. They have the same square footage.

It looks like this unit still has the same cherry kitchen as the 2011 listing.

The rooftop deck is shared with #7A but there’s a fence that goes down the center of the deck so it IS “private.”

Just a reminder, the unit has central air and washer/dryer in the unit but there’s no parking.

The fireplace  is also decorative.

Have we come full circle on this unit since the 2008 listing of $825,000?

And will this sell anywhere near this price?

Robert Nelson at Access Chicago Realty has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #7B: 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1800 square feet

  • Sold in July 2000 for $383,000
  • Was listed in August 2008 for $825,000 (leased parking nearby)
  • Reduced several times
  • Delisted in April 2009
  • Lis pendens foreclosure filed in June 2009
  • Was bank owned in November 2010 and listed for $369,000
  • Sold in January 2011 for $311,000
  • Currently listed for $675,000
  • Assessments now $534 a month (they were $509 a month in 2011)- includes exterior maintenance, lawn care, scavenger and snow removal
  • Taxes now $8512 (they were $6,378 in 2011)
  • Central air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • No parking
  • Deck: 23×29
  • Built-in grill on the deck
  • Bedroom #1: 11×19
  • Bedroom #2: 16×12




A Vintage East Lakeview 2/2 With Rare Garage Parking: 429 W. Aldine

427 w aldine

This top floor 2-bedroom in Cortina Court at 429 W. Aldine in East Lakeview just came on the market.

Built in 1926, this building has 24 units and some have their own, private heated garages on the back alley.

This is one of the units with the garage, which the listing says also has extra storage.

It has 9 foot ceilings and many of its vintage features including millwork, picture moldings and the mantel on the gas fireplace.

The listing says the kitchen has been “gutted.” It has 42 inch white cabinets, Carrera marble countertops, a white subway tile backsplash and stainless steel appliances.

There is also an attached butler’s pantry.

The listing says there is new electrical and plumbing.

Also rare for many vintage units, it also has outdoor space in a private deck off the kitchen.

In addition to the private garage, it also has in-unit washer/dryer but there’s no central air. There’s only window units.

This property has come on the market for $140,000 more than the 2008 price, at $460,000 including the parking.  But the 2008 listing did say it had the “original kitchen.”

Is $450,000+ the new price point for renovated 2/2 vintage units in East Lakeview?

Megan Tirpak at Coldwell Banker has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #9: 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1309 square feet

  • Sold in September 2008 for $320,000
  • Currently listed for $425,000 plus $35,000 for private garage parking space
  • Assessments of $469 a month (includes heat, cable, exterior maintenance, lawn care, scavenger and snow removal)
  • Taxes of $4765
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • No central air- window units only
  • Gas fireplace
  • Bedroom #1: 15×10
  • Bedroom #2: 13×11
  • Dining room: 15×13
  • Butler’s pantry: 13×8



Nothing to Do But Move In: A Duplex Down at 1224 N. Dearborn in the Gold Coast

1224 n dearborn #2

This 2-bedroom duplex down in the mansion at 1224 N. Dearborn Parkway in the Gold Coast just came on the market.

We’ve chattered about this building in the past. Built in 1900, it now has 13 units, some of which overlook the central courtyard which is a common area and has tables and a grill.

The listing says the unit has had a “gut renovation.”

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

There is a lower level master suite with a new spa-like bath with a steam shower and a walk-in master closet.

The lower level also has heated floors and a den.

The second bedroom is on the main floor along with the main living area.

Some of the vintage features remain on the main level including crown molding, a fireplace, although I can’t tell if it is real or decorative, and stained glass windows in the living room.

The main level has dark wood floors while the master suite on the lower level has the light, almost white, floors. The light floors are coming back in. They were used in HGTV’s Dream Home this year.

The unit has central air and washer/dryer but there’s no parking with this building. It is available for rent in the neighborhood.

Buyers want “new”.

Will this sell within days?

Sophia Worden at Berkshire Hathaway KoenigRubloff has the listing. See the pictures here.

Or see it at the Open House on Saturday, Feb 6 at 1-3 PM.

Unit #1F: 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1950 square feet

  • Sold in May 1992 for $285,000
  • Sold in May 2001 for $547,500
  • Sold in November 2012 for $556,500
  • Currently listed for $785,000
  • Assessments of $706 a month (includes exterior maintenance, lawn care, scavenger, snow removal)
  • Taxes of $8101
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Parking available for rent in the neighborhood
  • Bedroom #1: 13×20 (lower level)
  • Bedroom #2: 14×10 (main level)
  • Den: 11×14 (lower level)