Can Anyone Make Money On Co-Ops? A 2-Bedroom In 3750 N. Lake Shore Drive In Lakeview

This 2-bedroom in the vintage co-op building at 3750 N. Lake Shore Drive in Lakeview has been on the market for 10 months.

At 1600 square feet, it has a separate dining room, a butler’s pantry and oak hardwood floors.

Located on the second floor, it has north, south and west views.

The kitchen has checkerboard floors and carrera marble counter tops along with “high end” appliances.

The master bath has been rehabbed and has heated marble floors.

This is a rare vintage unit that has many features buyers look for including a washer/dryer in the unit and space pac cooling. There is rental parking available for $150 a month.

Yes, the HOA is $1440 a month but that includes the taxes.

Originally listed for $199,000 in February 2012, it has been reduced to $175,000.

Redfin shows it was last purchased in April 2010 for $130,000.

Is it possible to make money on the co-ops anymore?

Or are you buying it simply to live in?

Steven Acoba at Keller Williams Preferred has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #2H: 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1600 square feet, co-op

  • Sold in April 2010 for $130,000 (per Redfin)
  • Originally listed in February 2012 for $199,000
  • Reduced
  • Currently listed at $175,000
  • Assessments of $1440 a month (includes heat, gas, taxes, doorman, cable, indoor pool)
  • Taxes are $3426
  • Space pac cooling
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Rental parking available for $150 a month
  • Bedroom #1: 17×12
  • Bedroom #2: 17×11 


The “2nd Bedroom Is A Den/Office” Sells For $50K More Than 2010 Price In The Gold Coast: 10 E. Delaware

We last chattered about this 2-bedroom (which was really a 1-bedroom) in 10 E. Delaware in October 2012.

See our prior chatter here.

The listing agent had called it a 2-bedroom but then confessed in the listing that the second bedroom was really a den/office.

We had a spirited debate about what the definition of a “bedroom” was in real estate terms.

However, not many had an opinion on the saleability of a 1 bedroom plus den with 1023 square feet being listed at $740,000.

The unit recently sold for $665,000 (including the parking) – which was $50,000 over the 2010 price.

If you recall, this was a luxury unit.

The kitchen was Poggenpohl and had SubZero, Miele and Wolf appliances.

The master bath was marble.

Is this sale, after the unit was on and off the market for nearly 2 years, another indication of an improving market?

Timothy Salm at Jameson Sotheby’s had the listing. You can still see the pictures here.

Unit #11A: 2 bedrooms, 1.5 baths, 1023 square feet

  • Sold in January 2010 for $615,000 (included the parking)
  • Originally listed in January 2010 for $699,900
  • Reduced
  • Was listed as low as $649,000 in February 2011
  • Withdrawn
  • Was listed in October 2012 for $675,000 (parking $65,000 extra)
  • Sold in December 2012 for $665,000 (parking included)
  • Assessments of $481 a month (includes pool, doorman, a/c)
  • Taxes of $8392
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Bedroom #1: 12×12
  • Bedroom #2 (den????): 9×9


What Does An “Improving” Market Really Mean For Condo Sellers? 240 E. Illinois In Streeterville

This 2-bedroom in the Fairbanks at Cityfront Plaza at 240 E. Illinois in Streeterville recently came on the market.

At 1293 square feet, it is a north facing split 2/2 with a den.

The kitchen has dark cabinets, granite counter tops and stainless steel applianaces.

The listing says it has a marble bath.

The unit has floor to ceiling windows and 9’4″ ceilings.

It has the other amenities common in boom time construction including central air, washer/dryer in the unit and parking is $50,000 extra.

If you add on the price of the parking, this unit is listed at $675,000, or just $24,500 under the 2008 price of $699,500.

Yet a 2/2 unit two floors above, Unit #2508, sold in October for about 22% under its 2008 price (which was $696,500). It sold for just $545,000.

While an improving housing market may mean condo units ARE selling again, what does that mean for a seller who bought new construction in 2005-2009 era? 

Is the media hype about the market being “back” giving false hope to many sellers?

Lynn Mendel at Dream Town has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #2308: 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1293 square feet, den

  • Sold in January 2008 for $699,500
  • Originally listed in November 2012 for $625,000 (plus $50,000 for parking)
  • Currently still listed for $625,000 (plus $50k for parking)
  • Assessments of $773 a month (includes doorman, cable, pool, a/c, gas)
  • Taxes of $9457
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Bedroom #1: 13×12
  • Bedroom #2: 14×12
  • Office/den: 11×10






Market Conditions: Crain’s: Foreclosure Rate On FHA Loans In Chicago Soars

Crain’s is reporting that the foreclosure rate on FHA loans in Chicago is much higher than the national rate and is the highest of any metro area in the country.

Not only that, but many of the loans that are going bad are those that were given out AFTER the bust had already started (i.e. 2008-2009).

In the Chicago area, 9,067, or 6.26 percent of all FHA-insured loans issued since 2008 are now facing foreclosure, compared to a 2.07 percent foreclosure rate for all other loans issued here over the same period, according to a Crain’s analysis of data provided by Irvine, Calif.-based RealtyTrac Inc.

According to RealtyTrac, 16.7 percent of local FHA-insured loans issued in 2008 are now facing foreclosure, more than double the rate of other local loans issued that year.

2009 doesn’t look so hot either with what looks like about 9% of the FHA loans facing foreclosure compared to just about 2% of all loans.

Does the 3.5% downpayment requirement have anything to do with so many FHA loans going bad?

The FHA doesn’t loan money but instead collects premiums and insures mortgages for borrowers who often have limited financing options. FHA loans can be riskier than conventional mortgages because homeowners who use them often put down as little as 3.5 percent of their purchase price, well below the 15 percent to 20 percent that many non-FHA lenders require.

The agency expanded its efforts after the subprime lending crisis tightened credit and upended mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which were placed in the conservatorship of the federal government in 2008 after sustaining huge losses from distressed mortgages.

“(The FHA) took on a lot of borrowers the program was really not intended for and those borrowers took advantage of that situation to get into homes they really couldn’t afford,” said RealtyTrac vice-president Daren Blomquist. “The FHA programs did not adjust quickly enough based on the lessons that should have been learned from the subprime lending fallout.”

The FHA’s track record in the Chicago area is horrible over the last 12 years.

In fact, the Chicago area has the highest percentage of distressed FHA loans of any other metro area, with an 8 percent foreclosure rate on such loans issued since 2000, according to RealtyTrac. About 43.8 percent of Chicago-area residential loans issued since 2008 and now facing foreclosure are FHA-insured.

What’s the solution here?

Should the FHA be scaled sharply back?

Foreclosure much more likely here for FHA loans [Crain’s Chicago Business, David Lee Matthews, December 11, 2012]



We Love 2-Bedroom Church Condos With Cathedral Ceilings: 3101 N. Seminary In Lakeview

We’ve chattered about a lot of units built in former churches and synagogues over the years.

This 2-bedroom duplex up in a former church at 3101 N. Seminary in Lakeview still has some of the original church features such as the cathedral ceilings in the living room and the huge church windows.

The unit also has exposed brick and a balcony.

The two bedrooms are on the main floor along with a family room. A lofted den is on the second floor.

The listing says there is a “chef’s kitchen” with white cabinets, granite counter tops and stainless steel appliances.

There is a spa style master bath.

It has central air, washer/dryer in the unit and attached garage parking.

Is this property a good single family home alternative?

Linda Christon at D’Aprile Properties has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #D: 2 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, 2400 square feet, 1 car  parking

  • Sold in April 2002 for $684,000
  • Sold in October 2004 for $224,500 (typo in the public record? Maybe $724,500?)
  • Originally listed in October 2012 for $850,000
  • Currently still listed at $850,000
  • Assessments of $632 a month
  • Taxes of $12,282
  • Central Air
  • Washer/Dryer in the unit
  • Bedroom #1: 16×11 (main level)
  • Bedroom #2: 15×10 (main level)
  • Family room: 21×14 (main level)
  • Loft: 16×12 (second level)

Is The $1.8 Million Single Family Home The New Norm In Lakeview? 1244 W. George

This 5-bedroom new construction single family home at 1244 W. George in Lakeview came on the market at the end of November 2012 (although it appears to have been temporarily removed from the MLS.)

Built on a 24x123x25x123 lot (per the prior listing), the house is in the contemporary style.

It has an open floor plan with a modern staircase.

The kitchen has luxury finishes such as SubZero and Wolf appliances.

There’s also a wine cellar and a roof deck along with 2 car parking.

While we’ve seen new construction homes in Lakeview listed for $1.799 million before, this house doesn’t appear to be in one of the “B” school districts (Burley, Blaine or Bell.)

Is the new entry point for a new single family home in Lakeview over $1.5 million?

Serigo & Banks has the listing. You can still see the pictures here (interiors are from a similar property since the house is still under construction.)

1244 W. George: 5 bedrooms, 4.5 baths, no square footage listed, 2 car garage

  • Previous building sold in August 2012 for $365,000
  • Originally listed in November 2012 for $1.799 million
  • Temporarily off the market
  • Taxes are “new”
  • Bedroom #1: 17×15 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #2: 13×12 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #3: 15×11 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #4: 13×10 (third floor)
  • Bedroom #5: 13×12 (fourth floor)

This 2/2 In The Gold Coast Is Listed $52,000 Under The 1988 Price: 78 E. Elm

This 2-bedroom at 78 E. Elm in the Gold Coast just came on the market listed at $125,000.

Yes, it is bank owned and being sold “as-is.”

And yes, it is a garden apartment. The listing says the master bedroom leads to a patio.

There are only a couple of pictures with the listing. The kitchen appears to be intact, with white cabinets, counter tops and appliances.

I know you’re thinking “Sabrina, who wants to live in a garden apartment?”

But apparently 2 other buyers have since 1988.

It is now listed $52,000 under the 1988 price.

Yes- 1988.

Is this a steal?

Alexander Chaparro at Dream Town has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #1: 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1500 square feet, garden apartment

  • Sold in March 1988 for $177,000
  • Sold in October 1997 for $255,500
  • Lis pendens foreclosure filed in August 2010
  • Currently listed “as-is” for $125,000
  • Assessments aren’t listed
  • Taxes of $4385
  • Listing says no central air
  • No mention of washer/dryer either in the unit or the building
  • No mention of parking
  • Bedroom #1: 17×15
  • Bedroom #2: 15×11

Not All Rowhouses Sell Quickly On Historic Alta Vista: 3837 N. Alta Vista in Lakeview

We’ve chattered about rowhouses on historic Alta Vista in Lakeview many times on Crib Chatter. This is the block long street with 40 rowhouses made to resemble London rowhouses. It is a landmark block.

This 4-bedroom rowhouse at 3837 N. Alta Vista has been on the market since May 2012.

Built in 1901, it is on a 25×50 lot.

The listing doesn’t mention parking. Some on this block have parking (or room for it) in the backyard- and some do not.

On this block, it can be hit or miss with some rowhouses completely renovated and others not at all.

The listing says this rowhouse has wood floors and extensive woodwork. That appears to be the original tile surround on the fireplace.

The listing also says the kitchen has “newer” white cabinets.

This property was just reduced $50,000 to $450,000.

It is a short sale. A lis pendens foreclosure was filed against it in early November but the banks have been trying to sell properties through the short sale process where they are getting higher prices- rather than take the property back.

Will this sell as a short sale before it ever goes back to the bank?

And is this a deal for this block?

(By the way- of interest- the Coldwell Banker web site says this property had been viewed nearly 1600 times since May- and still no one has bought it.)

Pete Rodgriguez at Coldwell Banker has the listing. See the pictures here.

3837 N. Alta Vista: 4 bedrooms, 1.5 baths, no square footage listed

  • Sold in March 2006 for $529,000
  • Originally listed in May 2012 for $500,000
  • Lis pendens foreclosure filed in November 2012
  • Reduced
  • Currently listed as a “short sale” at $450,000
  • Taxes of $9658
  • Central Air
  • No parking listed
  • Bedroom #1: 15×12 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #2: 12×14 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #3: 10×11 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #4: 10×10 (second floor)
  • Listing also mentions a 5th bedroom in the basement with finished bath

You Can Get A 2-Bedroom In The Heart Of Bucktown For Under $210K: 2112 W. North Avenue

This 2-bedroom in the midrise tudor courtyard building at 2112 W. North Avenue in Bucktown came on the market in October 2012.

At just 850 square feet, it still manages to pack more punch than many 2-bedrooms double its size, including having a separate eating area.

There are hardwood floors throughout and a covered balcony.

The unit has a gas brick fireplace.

The kitchen has white cabinets and stainless steel appliances.

There is central air but no in-unit washer/dryer. Nor is there deeded parking but rental parking is available for $75 a month just steps away.

But there’s no need to have a car because this building is located just a block away from the Damen blue line stop and is right in the heart of all the shops and restaurants of both Bucktown and Wicker Park.

If you’re thinking “these were converted to condos during the housing boom so they should go back to being rental apartments” you would be wrong. Built in 1906, they’ve been condo units going back to at least 1997.

Are these starter condos still in demand?

Eric Marcus at Eric Marcus Real Estate Group has the listing. See the pictures here.

Unit #2E: 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, 850 square feet

  • Sold in May 1997 for $106,000
  • Sold in October 2002 for $185,000
  • Sold in November 2004 for $245,000
  • Sold in May 2009 for $220,000
  • Originally listed in October 2012 for $219,900
  • Reduced
  • Currently listed at $210,000
  • Assessments of $218 a month
  • Taxes of $2507
  • Central Air
  • No washer/dryer in the unit
  • No parking- but rental available nearby for $75 a month
  • Bedroom #1: 13×10
  • Bedroom #2: 11×9





Have You Dreamed Of Owning A B&B? There’s A 4-Bedroom For Sale In The Gold Coast: 113 W. Elm

This 4-bedroom vintage single family home at 113 W. Elm in the Gold Coast just came on the market.

It’s currently being used as a 4-room bed and breakfast.

Built in 1896 (or was it 1873???) on a 18.7×71.9 lot, it has 2 deeded parking spaces at 1122 N. Clark.

Each room has its own bathroom.

There is a 20 foot wall of windows in the living room that overlooks a back garden.

The house has a “newer” galley kitchen with stainless steel appliances.

There’s no central air-  only window units.

Rooms range from $129 to $229 a night.

Check out the Gold Coast Guesthouse B&B’s website here.

Is this a deal for a rowhouse in this location?

Jennifer Ames at Coldwell Banker has the listing. See the pictures here.

113 W. Elm: 4 bedrooms, 5 baths, no square footage listed

  • Sold in September 1994 for $205,000
  • Currently listed for $949,000
  • Taxes of $16,730
  • No central air- window units
  • 2 car deeded parking behind the building at 1122 N. Clark
  • Bedroom #1: 18×12 (third floor)
  • Bedroom #2: 18×11 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #3: 18×11 (second floor)
  • Bedroom #4: 9×14 (main floor)