Sheldon’s Chicago Real Estate Research Center

Buying Chicago real estate is more than just being presented with information; anyone can look through listing after listing, but what about the nitty-gritty details that don't make the bullet points?

Chicago real estate research center
As I mentioned in my last post, everyone’s got something to say about Chicago real estate, especially in a volatile climate like this one. Friends, co-workers, disappointed sellers and buyers, ecstatic buyers and sellers and more all tell a different version of the real estate story. So how can buyers get the information they need?
With over 22 years in this business selling all types of Chicago real estate and luxury real estate, I’m happy to help you as an expert in the field. It’s more than just presenting you with information; anyone can look through listing after listing and flip through images of beautiful Chicago homes for sale and pick which ones appeal to them the most. But there are many nuances to any property that don’t make the bullet points of a listing. These are details that, quite frankly, only someone who’s been around the proverbial block, can provide. A few examples include:
Narrowing your search: Real estate listings let you refine size, cost, etc., but there are still plenty of questions that only an expert can answer, such as: What buildings have 10-foot ceilings? Which buildings offer lake views in your price range? Which townhomes are extremely child-friendly? Where can you find Chicago homes with parking for three or more cars? Which luxury Chicago condo building provides the most (or even the most unusual) concierge services? (Note: Once you know what you’re looking for, you can even sign up for daily and up-to-the-minute updates of Chicago real estate coming on the market that meets your criteria).
Comparing buildings: The amenities, finishes, and unit sizes of a building may be nearly identical, but there’s much more to consider between one building and another. Depending on your lifestyle, one might be better in location; one might fare better in terms of decorating and designing it to your wants and needs; or one could be considered more prestigious than the other, which could affect your decision as well as it’s value in year’s to come. One building being “better’ than another often depends on what the individual buyer wants and needs.
Assessments: It’s not only important to consider the cost of assessments among Chicago condos, but also what those costs could mean for the unit’s resale value down the line. A low assessment may be ideal, but it may also compromise what the building offers in return. Being familiar with most Chicago condo buildings, I’m able to break down the differences between the various costs.
Nuances between units: When shopping for Chicago condos, it’s not unusual for me to have a conversation with a client to explain that a unit just wasn’t “it” over the nittiest and grittiest details: an odd placement of a wall, a lake view being off by a few degrees, or a finish not being quite what the buyer wanted. Sometimes these details seem fixable, but the cost could escalate so much that it may not be worth it. It’s also important to think about how those things might affect your design, what you want to use the space for, or the property’s future value.
Neighborhoods: Being a city of neighborhoods, Chicago certainly has the just-right location for any type of buyer, from empty nesters, to young professionals, to families and beyond. Even if you’re making an in-town move or one from across the world, it’s crucial to have a frank discussion about the type of neighborhood you’re looking for when making such a big investment in a place to live. Chicago has many wonderful neighborhoods to choose from, but should be whittled down based on your lifestyle. For example, one buyer may want to be within walking distance of nightlife and entertainment; another may want something in the city that feels more like a residential suburb. Finding what’s best for you is much more easily managed when working with someone who knows the ins and outs of the city’s unique regions.
If you have a question about Chicago real estate, email me any time. In my 22 years of experience, I’ve always emphasized the importance of asking questions of my clients and finding an answer to every last one of theirs. I firmly believe it’s the only way to drill down what exactly a buyer wants and ensure that they find a Chicago home that will make them happy for years to come. Send questions or contact me by email at or at (312) 498-5080.