Reflections on Chicago, Real Estate, and Life!

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Open Houses Sat and Sun 1/27 and 1/28

Please come to my open houses this weekend...Last weekend before the Bears cream the Colts in the Superbowl!
On Saturday, I will be in Old Town at 1444 N. Cleveland #2 from 1-4 p.m.
On Sunday, I will be in The West Loop at 1151 W Washington #125 from 1-4 p.m.
Contact me for more info.
See you there!

Thursday, January 18, 2007

6 Degrees of Chicago Real Estate

High of fourteen degrees, low of six, probability of more than 4 real estate consumers attending my open house on Saturday 1 in 10 (on the hopeful side)!

O.K., so I am exaggerating a little bit about the temperature thing, but when it's anything less than 35 degrees outside, it all feels the same! As for this weekend, well, Da Bears are in town, so we all know what that means! The pregame will begin at 6 a.m., or some insane time like that, even though the game doesn't start until 1 or 2 p.m. Therefore, all die hards will be parked on their couches until at least 5 or 6 p.m., perhaps later with all the post game shows that will most certainly be monopolizing prime time Sunday night T.V.

Well, what does that all mean for this weekend in real estate?? For me, it means I have to brainstorm all possible ways of bringing people into my open house. For instance, I think there should be rewards for those who come to my open houses during the winter season, and an extra bonus for attendance during Bears playoff games. Maybe I will give away some of my famous light up Hello Kitty and heart pens?
Perhaps, a raffle may stimulate buyers to rise up and out of their homes, brave the cold and flu season, and come on over to 1151 W. Washington #125 on Saturday from 1-4 p.m.?

Or, wait, maybe people will just come to see this 2 bed/2bath condo because they need to buy a home by this spring and are seriously motivated buyers!!! This property has so much to offer buyers such as, an extra large balcony overlooking a landscaped courtyard, garage parking included in the price, over 1600 square feet of living space, and it is located less than a mile from the heart of downtown Chicago!
One more incentive for stopping by, I am there to show the property to prospective buyers! If that's not a good reason to come by, then I give up!

Friday, January 12, 2007

Open House Sunday 1/14/07

Come to an open house at 1151 W Washington #125 this Sunday! Come early, before the Bears game, starting at 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. This 2 bedroom/2 bath condo in the West Loop is a must see! Walk to downtown, garage spot included in the price, large balcony overlooking one of the few courtyards in the West Loop, and it even has over 1600 square feet of living space! Please stop by or e-mail me for more info. or
See you there and go Bears!

Thursday, January 11, 2007

"Gym Rats" New and Old

Every evening as I stroll into the West Loop Athletic Club, I dread the possibility that someone may be monopolizing my favorite treadmill, (it is the second one to right of the second set of windows facing the basketball court, just to warn you fellow treadmill stealer's)! Anyways, if my lucky machine is unavailable, I will try to hop on another, but that is becoming increasingly more difficult. After all, it is New Years' resolution season! The once quiet, serene gym has become an overwhelming conglomeration of veteran worker outers, individuals that work out in "cycles," (these people follow the seasons, winter= indoor sessions, summer= outdoor workouts), and every one's favorites, the "newbies." The newcomers are often easy to spot, working with trainers, learning the breathing techniques of Pilates, trying not trip and fall off of the stair climber, and looking around to see what everyone else is doing!

I really don't mind the new crew. It is great that people want to get out there and work out to improve their health. However, once April and May roll around, a miraculous change occurs at the gym. The crowds thin out, my treadmill is available 90 percent of the time, gym goers can actually get a mat out of the bin for Yoga class, and the 5 and 8 pound weights for workout challenge are back on the market. Ahhhhhhh! What a relief!

For all those gym rats who are present during all four seasons, you know what I am saying. It is great to see more people becoming active, but when the gym gets back into the April-November cycle, (when people often exercise outdoors, or give up all together), it is a welcome break in the action. After all, for those people who are in the gym five to six times a week, every week of the year, it feels like a dream to be able to hop onto a favorite machine and go, go, go...... until New Years rolls around again!

Friday, January 5, 2007

Open Houses January 6th and 7th

This weekend I will be at 1444 N Cleveland #2 on Saturday from 1-4 p.m. I will also be at 1151 W Washington #125 on Sunday from 1-4 p.m. Both are 2 bedroom/2bath condos with several great amenities. Please contact me for more information. Thanks and hope to see you there!

Thursday, January 4, 2007

Living on Lake Shore

One of the greatest experiences that I have ever had was when I lived on Lake Shore Drive in Chicago. My husband and I lived in the New York Building at Lake Shore and Addison, in East Lakeview. Living on the 36th floor of a high rise with sweeping views of the Chicago skyline is enough to spoil anyone. The view is just one of the many perks of living on Lake Shore, another is the accessibility to the lake front path. Along the lake front path there is a great little dog beach, which is close to Belmont Avenue. Playing there was a wonderful treat for Butch, but of course I would have to get in the water first in order to coerce him into taking the cold plunge! When running along the lake front, we would often run to and through Lincoln Park Zoo, parks, and other attractions. There are so many wonderful aspects of living on Lake Michigan that everyone should try it if they get the chance!

Unfortunately, luxury living often comes at a price. Of course, the rents and home prices are higher than in some areas, but there are also other negative points to living in a very congested area. Firstly, Wrigley Field is just 4 blocks away from Lake Shore Drive on Addison Street. Along with this historic ballpark comes the often wild and intoxicated fans, which can be easily spotted on the el train, in Starbucks, stumbling through the streets, pretty much everywhere, and sometimes even as early as 11 a.m.

Then there is the parking, which is definitely the worst on game days. If you don't pay for a parking spot, then you will end up driving around for a good 20-30 minutes every time you come home in search of a space. This can be extremely frustrating at then end of a long work day.

There is even the occasional stuck-up, casually rude individual present in this neighborhood, (hard to believe, I know). One of my favorite examples occurred in the elevator of our building, which is compromised of about half owners and half renters. One night a resident of The New York Building came home with a bag from McDonald's. He was riding up in the elevator with his dinner when another resident boldly stated, "I didn't know that McDonald's delivered." My husband and I stood at the back of the elevator awaiting a reply from the unamused man, who came back with, "You have got to be kidding me, like you never eat McDonald's you ****." On the way out of the elevator the accusing party shot back by saying, "He must be a renter."

Overall, the pros of living on Lake Shore Drive far outweigh the cons. After all, it is hard to go wrong with a beautiful like right outside your front door.

Wednesday, January 3, 2007

"If you can hear the bells of St.Michaels, then you are in Old Town."

Old Town is one of Chicago's most coveted neighborhoods for several reasons. Firstly, it is viewed by many as a more exclusive section of the larger Lincoln Park area. Also, Old Town contains many historical buildings, as well as grandiose homes on tree lined streets. Wells Street is one of the most frequented areas of this Chicago neighborhood, because of its many world class restaurants, comedy clubs, unique shops, and kid friendly activities. In the midst of this commercialized section, a beautiful fountain encompassed by a small park can also be found. This is a wonderful area to just sit down with a good book and relax. Of course, Old Town is a idyllic location for anyone to live in, but it is also one of the priciest areas in the city. However, it is worth the cost, especially for families with small children, due to the wealth of parks, exceptional schools, early childhood centers, and the live horses on Orleans Street, which are part of the Noble Horse Theatre. There are a wealth of things to explore in this sublime Chicago neighborhood, one of them being its fabulous, ornate, and one of a kind homes, so what's holding you back? Let's get out there and search for your dream home together!