Get a 2-Bedroom Townhouse for Under $500,000 in River North: 917 N. Kingsbury

917 n kingsbury

This 2-bedroom townhouse in River Village at 917 N. Kingsbury in River North recently came on the market.

This complex has 119 townhomes and was built in 2004.

The first floor has 10 foot ceilings, cherry hardwood floors and a stone fireplace.

The kitchen has dark cabinets, granite counter tops and “brand new” stainless steel appliances.

The two bedrooms are on the second floor and have “brand new” carpet.

The master bedroom has an en suite bathroom while the second bedroom has 2-story vaulted ceilings and what looks like windows near the top of the walls near the ceilings.

It has two outdoor spaces, including a front brick paver patio that overlooks the street and a third floor top floor deck. The listing says its 18×11 but the floor plan says it’s 10×10.

All of the townhouses have connecting roof top decks.

It has central air and a “brand new” washer/dryer.

A heated garage space is available for $30,000.

At $474,900, is this a deal for a townhouse in this neighborhood?

Hillary Burich at Jameson Sotheby has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #917: 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1300 square feet

  • Sold in July 2004 for $347,500 (included the parking)
  • Sold in June 2008 for $427,500 (included the parking)
  • Sold in May 2013 for $395,000 (included the parking)
  • Currently listed for $449,900 plus $30,000 for the parking = $474,900
  • Assessments of $300 a month (includes exterior maintenance, lawn care, scavenger, snow removal)
  • Taxes of $5869
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer
  • Bedroom #1: 14×11
  • Bedroom #2: 14×10

Love Private Terraces and Rooftop Decks? A Lakeview Penthouse at 545 W. Aldine

545 w aldine

This 2-bedroom penthouse at 545 W. Aldine in East Lakeview recently came on the market.

It’s a true penthouse in this 30-unit elevator building.

According to the listing, this unit was a 3-bedroom but a wall was removed for the third bedroom to make a larger living room.

It has a big terrace that stretches across the length of the unit as well as a second floor private rooftop deck with 360 degree city views.

The unit has diagonal cherry floors, 8 foot doors, arches and a marble foyer.

The kitchen has a skylight and luxury stainless steel appliances.

The master suite has 2 walk-in closets as well as a spa bath.

It has central air and a large 12×10 laundry room.

I can’t tell if parking is included or not but there’s a garage parking space available.

Is this condo a terrace lover’s dream?

Gregory Desmond at @Properties has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #7A: 2 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, 2266 square feet

  • Sold in September 2000 for $789,000 (parking included)
  • Sold in July 2015 for $1,128,500 (parking included)
  • Currently listed for $1,195,000 (can’t tell for sure if parking is included)
  • Assessments of $896 a month (includes cable, Internet, exterior maintenance, lawn care, scavenger, snow removal)
  • Taxes of $17,394
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Bedroom #1: 19×16
  • Bedroom #2: 15×11
  • Laundry room: 12×10
  • Rooftop deck: 43×36

The $2.2 Million New Construction East Lakeview Condo: 434 W. Melrose

434 w melrose under construction

This 4-bedroom new construction condo in Melrose at the Lake at 434 W. Melrose in East Lakeview recently came on the market.

This is a completely new building with 17 luxury units and a parking garage.

5 years ago, it was apparently going to be luxury apartments but it’s now going to be condos instead.

The building is being constructed by Summit Design + Build.

There will be private wine storage, a fitness room, bike storage and 2 high speed elevators.

The building’s website doesn’t say there will be a doorman.

The units will have 10 foot ceilings with concrete between the floors.

The floors will be 4″ white oak flooring and have radiant heating.

You can see more details about the building as well as floor plans on the building’s website here.

This 4-bedroom unit is one of 9 currently listed on the MLS.

It has 3,000 square feet and private outdoor space.

The unit also has 4 bathrooms.

Garage parking is extra at $50,000.

The listing says that move-ins are likely as of September 1, 2017.

At a price of $2,205,000, this condo is $735 a square foot.

Is this price point the new reality at the luxury level in East Lakeview?

Aaron Share at Berkshire Hathaway KoenigRubloff is handling the listings. See the pictures here.

Unit #601: 4 bedrooms, 4 baths, 3000 square feet

  • New construction
  • Currently listed for $2,205,000
  • Parking is $50,000 (not sure if that’s for 1 spot or 2 spots)
  • Assessments of $1295 a month (includes heat, gas, exercise room, exterior maintenance, scavenger, snow removal)
  • Taxes are “new”
  • Central Air
  • Washer/dryer in the unit
  • Bedroom #1: 14×12
  • Bedroom #2: 13×12
  • Bedroom #3: 14×10
  • Bedroom #4: 12×11
  • Laundry room: 6×4
  • Recreation Room: 24×11




Get a Wrap Around Terrace with 360 Degree City Views: 200 W. Grand in River North


This 4-bedroom penthouse at 200 W. Grand in River North recently came on the market.

The listing says it is a full floor unit, on the 24th floor, and was originally raw space before having a custom build out.

It’s worth noting that it’s not actually on the top floor as unit #2602 is currently on the market as well and it says it is a penthouse.

The kitchen has modern cabinets with luxury stainless steel appliances along with several walls of white subway tile.

The master suite has a spa bathroom with rain and steam shower along with a walk-in closet.

3 of the bedrooms are en suite. The fourth bedroom is currently a theater.

The unit has central air, washer/dryer in the unit and 4 heated garage parking spaces are included.

But the crowning glory of the unit is the 2000 square foot wraparound terrace which the listing says is accessible from every room.

It is landscaped and irrigated with real bushes and trees.

At 4200 square feet and a list price of $3.999 million, that comes in at $952 per square foot.

Will this location and building support that price?

Daly Donellan at Flats has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #2401: 4 bedrooms, 3.5 baths, 4200 square feet

  • Sold in April 2005 for $1.465 million (included 4 parking spaces)
  • Sold in January 2009 for $2.050 million (included 4 parking spaces)
  • Currently listed for $3.999 million (includes 4 parking spaces)
  • Assessments of $2900 a month (includes heat, a/c, gas, doorman, exterior maintenance, scavenger, snow removal and Internet)
  • Taxes of $24,393
  • Terrace: 2000 square feet (separate from the 4200 square feet of interior space)
  • Bedroom #1: 16×14
  • Bedroom #2: 14×12
  • Bedroom #3: 12×12
  • Bedroom #4: 14×14
  • Office: 10×10


$129,000 Gain in 11 Months in the Loop? A 2-Bedroom Loft at 20 N. State


This 2-bedroom loft in 20 N. State in the Loop just came on the market.

If it looks familiar, that’s because it was on the market last year and sold in July.

The listing calls it a “Zen designer condo.”

This loft originally had concrete ceilings but a wooden drop ceiling was added.

There are exposed brick walls, maple wood floors, and sliding doors to the master bedroom.

The second bedroom does not have windows.

The kitchen has dark cabinets, stainless steel appliances including a double oven, and a subway tile back splash.

There are heated floors in the bathrooms.

The unit also has a unique feature we don’t see often: a full bar with seating.

The listing says the property is being sold with the furnishings included.

It has the features buyers look for including central air and washer/dryer in the unit.

There’s no parking, but it’s available in the neighborhood for rent. The building is perfectly located for those without their own car as it is at the epicenter of public transportation, including multiple bus and El stops.

This loft has come back on the market for $129,000 more, at $539,000, than it sold for just 11 months ago.

Are prices really going up this quickly in the Loop?

Jesse Barnes at Downtown Realty has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #409: 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1100 square feet

  • Sold in July 2003 for $260,000
  • Sold in August 2012 for $166,000
  • Sold in July 2016 for $410,000
  • Was listed for rent in March 2017 for $4200 a month
  • Reduced
  • Was listed for rent at $3995 a month
  • Rental listing withdrawn in June 2017
  • Currently listed for $539,000
  • Assessments of $804 a month (includes heat, a/c, gas, exercise room, exterior maintenance, scavenger)
  • Taxes of $5037
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • No parking (available for rent for $208 a month in the neighborhood)
  • Bedroom #1: 11×20
  • Bedroom #2: 11×12
  • Office: 6×8

A Rare Vintage 3-Bedroom in the Heart of River North: 55 W. Erie


This top floor vintage 3-bedrom at 55 W. Erie in River North just came on the market..

This building was constructed in 1884 and has 9 units.

It’s one of the few vintage condo buildings that remains standing in the River North neighborhood.

This unit has north and south exposures along with high ceiling.

There’s exposed brick in the living room and the kitchen along with 2 fireplaces, including a wood burning fireplace in the living room.

The listing says the baths have been rehabbed to a “spa-like” level and have remote controlled heated floors.

The kitchen has white cabinets, granite counter tops, stainless steel appliances and a built-in breakfast nook.

The building has no parking but the listing says there is a spot available in 33 W. Ontario for $25,000.

It has the other features buyers look for including central air and washer/dryer in the unit. There is also a storage locker in the basement.

The listing doesn’t indicate that there is an elevator in the building. You would have to take the stairs.

However, a 3-bedroom in a vintage building in River North is rare.

At $499,000, is this priced to sell quickly?

John Mawicke at @Properties has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #4E: 3 bedrooms, 1.5 baths, no square footage listed

  • Sold in May 1998 for $170,000
  • Sold in June 2000 for $245,000
  • Currently listed for $499,000
  • Assessments of $468 a month (includes exterior maintenance, scavenger)
  • Taxes of $6673
  • Parking is available at 33 W. Ontario for $25,000
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Bedroom #1: 14×12
  • Bedroom #2: 14×10
  • Bedroom #3: 10×10

Market Conditions: Is the Day of Reckoning Coming for Luxury Downtown Apartments?

Anyone in Chicago can see the cranes.

They are everywhere. Downtown, Hyde Park, Bucktown, Logan Square, Lincoln Park, and Lakeview.

Chicago has more construction cranes (over 40) than ANY other city in America.

Most of the buildings going up are luxury apartment towers.

Crain’s says 2,000 of these apartments will be completed this summer in the downtown neighborhood alone.

Who will rent them all?

Developers will complete a record 4,500 apartments in downtown Chicago this year and another 3,500 in 2018, a potential downer for landlords enjoying the best rental market in decades. But the market held up in the first quarter amid strong demand for apartments, according to Appraisal Research Counselors, a Chicago-based consulting firm.

The average net effective rent at top-tier, or Class A, downtown buildings rose to $3.01 per square foot in the quarter, up 1 percent from first-quarter 2016, according to Appraisal Research. That’s well below the 3 percent to 5 percent rent increases of the past few years, suggesting the market is decelerating, but not shifting in reverse.

The Class A occupancy rate, meanwhile, was 93.9 percent, down from 94.5 percent a year earlier but up from 91.7 percent in the fourth quarter.

The true test for landlords will come in the next several months, when the bulk of those 4,500 new apartments hit the market. About 2,000 will open in June, July and August, which could set off a competitive scramble for tenants, said Appraisal Research Vice President Ron DeVries.

“It’s kind of the calm before the storm,” he said.

But don’t worry. Jobs are being created and demand is strong.

According to the US Census Bureau, the city center gained 42,423 residents from 2010 to 2015.

The market absorbed 1,103 units downtown in the first quarter. That is considered a “strong” quarter.

Strong demand is already filling one new building: Linea, a 33-story tower at 215 W. Lake St. in the Loop that just opened at the beginning of the month. Sixty-seven of the building’s 265 apartments are already leased, ahead of projections, said its developer, Thomas Roszak. He’s seen especially strong interest from couples with two incomes but no children.

“They want to walk to work, walk to the bars, walk to the restaurants,” he said.

Nonetheless, even increased demand won’t keep up with the 4,500-unit supply increase in this year and the 3,500-unit gain in 2018. DeVries expects the downtown Class A occupancy to drop to about 92 percent a year from now.

Roszak also acknowledges that the market could soften as it digests thousands of new apartments.

“It may take a little more time to absorb them,” he said. “Rents might be a little flat.”

Are developers being overly optimistic about the next 12 months or is Chicago’s economy really that hot?

For downtown apartments, it’s the ‘calm before the storm’ [Crain’s Chicago Business, June 5, 2017]

Love Mid-Century Modern? A 3-Bedroom Townhouse at 400 W. Surf in Lakeview

2900 n sheridan

This mid-century modern townhouse at 400 W. Surf in East Lakeview just came on the market.

Built in 1953, there are 18 units in this complex on the corner of Sheridan and Surf.

We’ve chattered about this complex before.  The pictures above and below are of some of the townhouses on the Sheridan side, but you get the idea of what the complex looks like.

2900 n sheridan #2

This particular unit is on the corner of Surf and Sheridan and has a large, private outdoor terrace that is landscaped and fenced in.

The living room has floor-to-ceiling doors that open onto the outdoor terrace.

The kitchen overlooks the front yard and has gray cabinets, stainless steel appliances and stone counter tops.

It has the layout that buyers look for with all three bedrooms are on the second floor. The master bedroom has a walk-in closet and its own master bathroom.

The listing says all the bathrooms have been remodeled.

There are skylights and the listing says it has a newer roof.

The townhouse has a lower level family room with a 100 inch projection television and massive 21×12 laundry and utility rooms.

It has central air and garage parking is included, which I believe is in an underground garage for the complex.

The listing says the property is in the Nettlehorst school district.

Is this the perfect family starter home in this neighborhood?

Michael Hall at Baird & Warner has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #1: 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, no square footage listed

  • Sold in June 2005 for $350,000
  • Sold in August 2007 for $420,000
  • Currently listed for $625,000 (garage parking included)
  • Assessments of $385 a month (doesn’t list what is included in that)
  • Taxes of $7952
  • Central Air
  • Bedroom #1: 16×11 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #2: 13×12 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #3: 9×6 (second floor)
  • Family room: 22×21 (lower level)
  • Laundry: 21×12 (lower level)
  • Utility room: 21×12 (lower level)
  • Terrace: 23×15

Market Conditions: Is Tight Inventory Keeping Sales Depressed? April Sales Fall YOY

Seward park statute Feb 2017

The Illinois Association of Realtors is out with the April sales data:

The city of Chicago saw a 4.4 percent year-over-year home sales decline in April 2017 with 2,586 sales, down from 2,706 in April 2016. The median price of a home in the city of Chicago in April 2017 was $297,150, up 3.9 percent compared to April 2016 when it was $286,000.

Here are the sales statistics for April since 2007:

  • 2007: 2419 sales
  • 2008: 1886 sales
  • 2009: 1407 sales
  • 2010: 1984 sales
  • 2011: 1466 sales
  • 2012: 1816 sales
  • 2013: 2392 sales
  • 2014: 2256 sales
  • 2015:  2435 sales
  • 2016: 2706 sales
  • 2017: 2586 sales

Here are the median prices:

  • 2007: $289,800
  • 2008: $300,000
  • 2009: $218,000
  • 2010: $225,000
  • 2011: $169,000
  • 2012: $184,400 (IAR says it was $182,000 but I have $184,400 from last year’s data)
  • 2013: $223,500
  • 2014: $250,000
  • 2015: $271,325
  • 2016: $286,000
  • 2017: $297,150

Sales might have dipped year-over-year but 2016 saw the highest number of April sales in 8 years so it was going to be hard to top that with the current inventory.

“With the spring market underway, buyer demand has not abated in the least,” said Matt Silver, president of the Chicago Association of REALTORS® and partner at Urban Real Estate. “Rather, increased competition for homes that are priced well and move-in ready will continue to drive prices upward. Both motivated sellers and buyers should be prepared for these conditions to continue in the coming months.”

“Sellers flooded the market in March, and as a result inventories were struggling to keep pace with demand in April,” said Illinois REALTORS® President Doug Carpenter, ABR, AHWD, GRI, SFR of Mokena, managing broker of Coldwell Banker The Real Estate Group in Orland Hills. “It’s clear from the relatively short average time to sell that buyers really do want to find a home. The problem is they are having to work much harder to find one that meets their criteria due to a shortage of options.”

The number of days on the market dropped to 61 days from 68 a years ago statewide.

The average 30-year mortgage was 4.05% versus 3.6% a year ago.

The U of I housing expert voiced some caution about the market statewide, however, due to recent job losses statewide (Caterpillar layoffs?).

“While sales will continue the usual early summer upward growth, there are some sharp differences in the forecasts for median prices” said Geoffrey J.D. Hewings, director of the Regional Economics Applications Laboratory at the University of Illinois.  “The forecasts for median price indicate continued positive changes, but the REAL Housing Price Index (HPI), which compares specific housing characteristics, suggests declines and may also be reflecting the employment losses in the state over the past two months.”

The hot housing market continued into May as inventory remains low.

Have you been involved in a bidding war? How far are you willing to go to “get” a home?

Illinois home prices increase in April; Sales lower amid tight inventory [Illinois Association of Realtors, Press Release, May 24, 2017]


Love Views? SoNo Still Has Them at 860 W. Blackhawk in Lincoln Park

860 w blackhawk

This 2-bedroom on the 20th floor of SoNo at 860 W. Blackhawk in Lincoln Park recently came on the market.

Built in 2009, SoNo has 198 units and is in the North/Clybourn neighborhood. The building was closing on units just as the recession hit.

This unit has south and west views which includes views of downtown.

It has new walnut flooring throughout.

The kitchen has stainless steel appliances and granite counter tops, including on the island.

It has a split bedroom floor plan with the second bedroom sporting a custom murphy bed.

The master bathroom is marble and has double sinks.

The unit has a large covered balcony which allows grilling.

It has all the features buyers look for including central air, in-unit washer/dryer and 2-car side by side parking.

This unit has come on the market 3 years after its last sale for $61,000 more at $695,000.

Is $700,000 the new asking price for 2/2s with views in this building?

Joe Kennedy at @Properties has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #2002: 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1416 square feet

  • Sold in February 2010 for $478,000
  • Sold in September 2014 for $634,000
  • Currently listed for $695,000
  • Assessments of $799 a month (includes heat, a/c, gas, parking, doorman, cable, Internet, exercise room, exterior maintenance, scavenger, snow removal)
  • Taxes of $9128
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Includes 2 parking spaces (looks like they are NOT deeded as they don’t show up in the CCRD record)
  • Bedroom #1: 21×12
  • Bedroom #2: 14×12
  • Foyer: 15×5
  • Balcony: 12×10