When I posed the question in the headline to local correspondent Maureen Mohling she exhibited her usual flair for summarizing a complex topic in a single word: "patience," she responded. Mohling was taking into account the relative scarcity of beachfront homes, the fact that they come to market infrequently, and that some trade privately without hitting the public market.
Some might agree with Ambrose Bierce's definition of patience as "a minor form of despair, disguised as a virtue." But before you despair of ever acquiring that beachfront home in a prieme north Shore location, consider that one came on the market yesterday, and Mohling suggests in the video there may be another available in June.
Besides patience, you'll need to contend with the $4,850,000 asking price for 321 Willow (pictured above), and the often steeper price for other lakefront estates in Winnetka. And, you'll probably need to establish contact with one of the local real estate agents who are tuned in to the availability of this type of property and the many unusual factors that determine the value of lakefront homes.
If you lack the patience, the dough, or the contacts to buy a beachfront home in Winnetka you can always console yourself at one of the village's beautiful public beaches. See my video from last summer at Tower Road Beach.