Friday, November 30, 2012

NEW for sale: Bowmanville single family house is your holiday gift at $419,900

We just listed an attractive renovated house for sale at 2209 W Farragut for $419,900.  This is a tremendous value for a move-in ready house in this popular location.

Watch the Video!

2209 W Farragut asking $419,900
Taxes $6,500
3 renovated bedrooms on second level
2 new baths
25x125 lot with fantastic patio and south facing yard
Full, walk-out basement (unfinished, but clean with great utility)
2 car garage
NEW Central AC and Heat
NEW stainless steel appliances
Blown-in insulation and newer windows

This house looks and feels great...outstanding community too! Bowmanville Community Organization, steps to new Dominick's, Winnemac Park, Andersonville retail and restaurants, Lincoln Square's shopping, food and culture, booming Chappell Elementary School district, Rogers Park Montessori and more!
2209 W Farragut in the Bowmanville neighborhood of Lincoln Square
Great outdoor space with patio and newly sodded yard.
Spacious living room
New second floor bath

Second Bedroom

Third Bedroom
Dining room with great width for hutch or sideboards

Tasteful, fully equipped kitchen with new appliances

The kitchen opens to rear, four seasons sun room

Living room opens to dining rom

Renovated main floor bath (not shown is large built in cabinet with granite counter top).

Bright master bedroom with Elfa organized walk-in closet

Flexible and fun sun room (with central ac/heat)

Entry foyer with terrific detail

Call Eric Rojas, Broker with Kale Realty for all showings 773-510-1597.  24 HRS minimum notice.  Pre-Approved buyers or proof of cash subject to verification PRIOR to showing appointments.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

For Rent: Old Town Penthouse, 4000 sq/ft with roof deck, 4 bedrooms, 4.5 baths $5,500/ month

The actual skyline view from 1438 W Wieland's private roof top deck: Photo Eric Rojas, Broker 
Private full roof top deck

Living room facing east

Living room, dining room

Great room

Master bedroom
Penthouse level leading to large front terrace
$5,500 a month. Executive space. Heart of Old Town! Spectacular and wide 3 level penthouse over 4000 sq/ft. Private elevator in unit, 4 bedrooms, 4.1 baths, 2 family rooms. Huge living/ dining Rm, 4 fireplaces, 3 decks, private roof deck w/360 views, 2 balconies=1,500sq/ft of outdoor space. Granite and stainless steel kitchen, marble "his and hers" baths, wet bar on penthouse level, attached garage for 1 car, pad for 2nd car. Close to CTA trains, the lakefront, Second City, Zanies, Top-Rated restaurants and bars, boutiques & all that Wells Street, River North and Gold Coast have to offer steps away. On the doorstep of downtown. 
Owner is licensed broker in Illinois, however, not the listing agent.

Call Eric at  773-510-1597 .  Available February 1st, 2012.  One month's security deposit, strong credit, application and credit check fee required.  
Pets OK with owner approval, prefer one year or more lease. 
48 HOURS NOTICE for showings.

Watch the video!

Video! Recess at Ravenswood's Chappell School and CPS

Medill News from Northwestern University featured Chappell Elementary School for their story on the new required recess at Chicago Public Schools. Chappell School is located in the Ravenswood neighborhood of Lincoln Square.  Our Kindergarten son loves the recess and comes home talking about new games he has learned.  Our PRE-K daughter can't wait to move-up!
Add caption

WATCH the Medill News VIDEO HERE

What's really cool about the recess program with Playworks is many higher grade students help as "leaders".  Older kids around the school (and neighborhood) are always saying hello, waving to our son because they interact with him as leaders. It's neat to see the kids supportive and welcoming across the grade levels!  The recess, lunch-time and other activity student-helpers at Chappell foster this excellent atmosphere.

There are many great school choices in Chicago neighborhoods.  You my be surprised at the facilities and rigor at many CPS neighborhood schools.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

City living: Photos of Big Art at Navy Pier

Can you read this work?

 Navy Pier is actually fun for Chicagoans too.  Things like Big Art make this so.
A couple weekends ago our family enjoyed the Chicago Toy and Game Fair at Navy Pier...but it's just as enjoyable having the kids run around the plazas and pier as being inside the convention halls.
Our kids pretended this sculpture was a "prison".   They escaped.
This one says "Climb me".

More Streeterville posts here

Lakeview with lake views for the $500,000s

Views from a condo unit terrace in East Lake View
Warning...bad phone camera photos!

I was out last weekend with clients looking for a high floor condo home in the $500,000s with great outdoor space in southern Lakeview and Lincoln Park.  We saw an East Lakeview property with an awesome roof top terrace and lake views (between the high rises).  Legitimate Belmont Harbor views too!  The surrounding city views are always interesting.
City views looking west from North Sheridan Road in Lakeview
This roof deck came with a sprawling vintage penthouse unit that feels like a house in the sky.   However, some of the vintage building trade offs were a little too much for these buyers and off to Lincoln Park we went.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Sold! Our contemporary Ravenswood listing closes for top dollar

Our relocated client just closed on his Ravenswood, Lincoln Square condo sale today at 1949 W Leland #3Condo info, photos and video HERE.  The home went under contract within 30 days and closed for $290,000 in a smooth transaction... a top price tier for comparable homes in the area. We thank our sellers for all their hard work in preparing their homes for sale while working with us.

Please contact us if selling or buying a condo or house in the Lincoln Square area.  We are helping our clients understand the market, setting proper expectations and completing successful transactions.  We tailor a plan for each individual client. 

Gold Coast condo says "No fat cats!"

Gold Coast condo associations and co-op boards may have interesting rules
I was just looking through Gold Coast apartments for sale with a client.  One listing made clear no dogs,  but "Cats allowed, weight limit".  How big does the cat have to be before there's trouble? Is there a condo association scale? We've often seen weight limits for dogs so I guess this is only fair!

More Gold Coast posts HERE


Old Town Triangle area home sales 2012

We've been in Old Town Triangle of Lincoln Park over the past couple weeks preparing a client's home for sale.  Let's take a look at single family home and condo sales in 2012 for this most desirable of Chicago locations.  You can read about the historic area boundaries as written below and many more Old Town Triangle area posts at Yo Chicago

The Old Town Triangle is part of the Lincoln Park neighborhood along Chicago's north lakefront.
It's bounded by North Ave (1600 N), Armitage Ave (2000 N), Lincoln Park and a line drawn from the intersection of Lincoln Ave and Armitage Ave south to Larrabee St (600 W). The line which is the western boundary of the Old Town Triangle generally corresponds to the right-of-way of what was formerly Ogden Avenue.
ZIP code: 60614

The roughly 2 square block radius in East Lincoln Park surrounding Old Town Triangle...a fantastic location in Chicago

We'll use a square shape above to cover the neighborhood between  the major streets of West Armitage to West North Avenue and North Clark to North Larrabee to get a better look at sales and the types of properties available in - and adjacent to - the Old Town Triangle Historic District.

The row houses on the 1800 block of North Lincoln present the opportunity for a great door!

 Single family home and row home sales in 2012 (JAN 1st to NOV 19th

There have been 19 closed single family homes and row homes in the greater Old Town Triangle area so far this year.  The median price was about $1.2 million. This may seem a little low for this location compared to Lincoln Park's median single family home price this year of about $1.3M.  However, the homes in the actual historic district of East Lincoln Park are much smaller on average and often feature less luxury amenity in the historic homes in exchange for the privileged location.

The highest single family home (totally detached) sale this year is $3,133,365 at 1839 N Cleveland.  This was a re-sale of a 2000 built 6 bedrooms home on a 24x125 Chicago lot.  The highest row house sale so far is 1910 N Clark for $1.975 million.  This wider than usual 4 bedrooms row house at 23 feet wide features a rear addition with attached garage and elevator.

Condos (and town houses with condo association)

There are many ways to experience the East Lincoln Park, Old Town Triangle lifestyle.  132 attached condos and town houses closed from January 1st to November 19th this year.  This is a large number of units for this relatively small area and up from the 94 units sold same time last year  This also includes a few high rise buildings along North Clark Street and a small portion of North LaSalle which increase the density of available condos.

Condo Prices
 The highest sale for an attached unit this year was 1813 N Mohawk Unit A for $1,230,000.  The 3000 sq/ft, 4 bedrooms end-unit town house sold within a week after going on the market.   The lowest condo sale in our boundaries so far was a mere $105,000 at 1850 N Clark # 2406 (Hemingway House).  The high floor studio has great city views.  I've gone to a couple terrific events at the Hemingway House party room and sun deck...great views and A+ location to impress friends and associates.

24 condos sold for $200,000 or under.  All but three were in high rise buildings and the assessments that go with them.  The other three were small one-bedroom vintage conversions. The median price for all attached unit sales (132) in the is area is $320,000 this year.  94 units sold with a median price of $395,000 same time last year in 2011.
Row house or high rise... there are many budget options providing the Old Town Triangle lifestyle is a very thorough source for unique Chicago neighborhood information...just one of the many reasons I work with them for our property and neighborhood videos.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Bob about town: Novogratz edition!

Bob managed to send me this inside joke on his quick jaunt to New York City.  If you're a fan of designers Robert and Cortney Novogratz, you're in on it too!

Production trailers outside the Novogratz residence...hopefully for some new shows soon!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Our 2012 Official Thanksgiving Turkey

This year's official Thanksgiving turkey art comes from our barely 3 year old Amalia. The complex, multilayer abstract was produced in her renowned Pre-K art studio (her classroom).  I must admit it's a much more thought provoking work than our oldest son's at 3 1/2 years old (produced in the same classroom). 

The artist at her home studio.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Watch the video! Ravenswood Hospital demolition

I shot some demolition footage of the long vacant Ravenswood Hospital in Lincoln Square earlier this month. 

The site will be the new permanent home of the Lycee Francais de Chicago.

You can read some history on the development HERE at Center Square Journal.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Hancock Center Christmas tree signals shopping season

You know what time it is...

We had some business downtown today and could not pass up a photo of the Christmas tree in the Hancock Center plaza at 875 N Michigan Avenue.  The weather was great and the shoppers were out.  However, Mag Mile was quiet compared the the Festival of Lights last evening. 

Bob about town: Mothers at MCA Plaza compliments Chicago public art

I first noticed Martin Creed's installation "Mothers" while sitting in the cafe at the new Lurie Children's Hospital across from the Museum of Contemporary Art.
We sometimes (not often enough) point out Chicago's public of our favorites things about living in the city.

Martin Creed's Work No. 1357, MOTHERS rotates 360 degrees
The large sculpture on its rotation

 Bob took these shots after meeting a client at the MCA this afternoon to complete a purchase offer contract.  It's a pleasure working with someone connected to the art world as the house hunting has been deeply rooted in aesthetics (something we emphasize).

Friday, November 16, 2012

Eating hip, buying house in Logan Square no problem

Township at 2202 N California in hip, hip, hip Logan Square (photo Eric Rojas, Broker)

One of my main man contractors Jon Hill owner of Artistic Construction and I ducked into the newish Township restaurant, bar and music venue for lunch the other day after looking at houses for our client.  The food was good (Cod sandwich) and the people great...very art/ music oriented scene of course.  The nightlife is teeming at this California and Milwaukee intersection located close to the California Blue Line.

Home sales are very active within a couple blocks of our lunch spot.

There have been 25 sold (closed) single family homes in the last 12 months within a couple blocks radius of the California Blue Line stop bounded by North Western to North Kedzie and West Fullerton to West Armitage.  11 more homes are under contract.

The median price for a single family house sold or under contract in the last 12 months is $450,000.  The home sales are led by a half dozen or so modern new builds by the same developer. There are also sales of complete gut rehabs of traditional homes in the median price range $450,000 and under and a handful of houses sold under $250,000 that need substantial work.  There are move-in quality, smaller homes available in the $300s.

The potential of the this area went through the roof this year.  Homes bought from $100,000 to $175,000 have been rehabbed and re-sold for the mid $400s.  A well finished new construction house on a 33 wide lot at 2429 W Belden sold for $916,000.

Currently, there are 7 homes for sale in this area ranging from $240,000 to $950,000.

Lincoln Park three bedroom condos (attached home) sales UP 35% in 2012

It's been a robust year for condo sales in Lincoln Park this year.  Several of our recent clients have bought or would like to find a three bedroom condo or town house in this most desirable of neighborhoods.  It's also the season where a good number of sellers are contacting us with an eye on listing now, or, next year. Let's see what sales and prices look like this year for three bedroom attached homes (including town house style) in Lincoln Park.
Photo Eric Rojas, Real Estate Broker
Lincoln Park Three Bedroom Attached Home Sales 
January 1st-November 14th

257 attached three bedroom attached homes sold from January 1st to November 14th of this year.  That's way up 35% from the 190 sold in the same period last year  The median price was about $535,000.  This includes a very diverse range of properties...from high-rise to town house.

Three bedroom, two baths sales

76 of the sold units in 2012 so far were three bedrooms and two baths. That's up from 60 sold same time last year. The median price for the this very popular search request is about $435,000, down from $475,000 same period last year.  The $435,000 median looks like deals were better this year. However, we've noticed a lot of higher assessment units selling (loft and high-rise units) which may reflect lower asking prices but also higher maintenance fees that increase cost of ownership.

Town Houses
We represented the town house sale of 1827 N Sheffield early this year (photo Eric Rojas)

93 town house style units with three bedrooms sold from January 1st to November 14th this year.  This may be a bit high as several units listed in the MLS have a den or family room counted at the 3rd bedroom (not a true 3rd bedroom).  Nevertheless , that's way up from the 66 three bedroom units sold same time last year.  The median price for a three bedroom town house style unit is about $525,000 this year.

More Lincoln Park HERE

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Just in: Pawar says Mariano's, Sears lot development passes full City Council

Alderman Ameya Pawar of the 47th Ward just announced on his Facebook feed that the Mariano's, L.A. Fitness development at the Sears Parking lot at West Lawrence and North Ravenswood (in the Ravenswood neighborhood) has passed City Council today.
Site of Mariano's and L.A. Fitness development in Ravenswood (Photo, Eric Rojas)

The great majority of neighbors have waited a long time for this site to be developed. The area is flush with major infrastructure improvements including the Lawrence Avenue Streetscape (a dramatic change making Lawrence more pedestrian and business friendly), new Ravenswood Metra Station and bridges, the new French International School at West Wilson and North Damen...not to mention a healthy crop of new construction single family houses and renovations built and sold this past year.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

City living: Lincoln Square family activities a slam dunk

Pre-K defense!

There are great reasons to live in the city or the suburbs.  Those choosing the city usually do so for the proximity to work and ability to walk to activities (family or otherwise).  We enjoy the many, many activities and events in Lincoln Square within walking distance from our house.  This season our two "oldest" kids are playing "Itty Bitty Basketball" at St. Matthias in Lincoln Square.
The K-1st Graders listen up!
 Community parents and St. Matthias school teachers run the fun activities. Tons of kids are signed up.  I'm amazed at the focus of these youngsters and their effort!

Home sales, photos in Peterson Woods neighborhood of Chicago

Where is Peterson Woods?  North of Budlong Woods of course.
A charming corner home on North Virginia and West Hollywood in Peterson Woods with Legion Park in the background
Peterson Woods is an enclave in the West Ridge Community Area on the North Side.  The area is bounded by the large Legion Park on the west that runs along the North Branch of the Chicago River. North California is on the east, Bryn Mawr on the south and West Peterson on the north.  The neighborhood basically angles along the convenient 5600- 6000 blocks North Lincoln Avenue and offers many basic retail needs.
Area map of Peterson Woods created on
The single family homes are unique and pricing diverse. Homes on the "park-side" are in demand and sell at a premium. You can also purchase a smaller brick house for around $200,000 that needs substantial work. It's a pretty area of custom built Tutors, octagon bungalows, "Prairie Style" flat roof homes, ranches, Georgians, brick cottages and classic brick front and side entrance historic Chicago bungalows.
A gorgeous corner brick cottage at West Hollywood and North Sacramento
Peterson Park single family home sales over the last 2 years

There have been 15 closed (sold) homes in the Peterson Woods enclave over the past 24 months. The median price is about $330,000 for that time period.  The highest sale over the past 24 months was 5736 N Sacramento, a 60ft wide lot property in need of updates for $650,000.

Only 5 of those homes sold over the last 12 months with a median price of $265,000 for the smaller sample.  All 5 of the homes sold over the last 12 months were closed under $400K.

A median priced home in the $330,000 range will typically get you a three bedrooms brick bungalow or Georgian on a standard or wider lot that has updates... but needs some work.  Because the homes are very diverse and mostly custom built $330,000 can purchase a solid move-in house on the smaller side or one needing complete renovation. All stats gathered from and interpreted by Eric Rojas, Real Estate Broker
Peterson Woods home; Photo Eric Rojas, Real Estate Broker
Peterson Woods homes; Photo Eric Rojas, Real Estate Broker
Peterson Woods homes; Photo Eric Rojas, Real Estate Broker
You can imagine the "fairy tale" like quality of the wooded landscape and ornate architecture. This area is served by Jamieson Elementary and many nearby parochial and private schools.  If you are looking on the North Side for a house and do not depend much on public transportation (besides the Lincoln bus), Peterson Woods may be a good fit.  The blocks are really wonderful and it's close to many amenities of Lincoln Square just south and the North Shore as well.

More Chicago market statistics here!