Recent Trends and Creative Urban Parks

Real Estate never sleeps!  Even as we head into the Holidays and the cold months, me and my fellow brokers keep the heat on – homes are for sale, buyers are making decisions, never a dull moment!

Buyers are finding some of the best values we have had in years, while others are joining the trend to rent and hold off on major decisions for the time being.  From a recent Sun Times article, home sales jumped 23% in October from a year ago, with prices DOWN 15.3% from a year ago.  All the while, the rental market is growing as well!  It’s all good as they say, there is action at all levels!

I was selling a large home on Dayton and was asked to look into renting it out.  On the first day after I publicized the rental alternative a renter came along!  I re-familiarized myself with the reality of renting a $3+ million dollar home.  It takes a lot of time and thought, the seller has to make some mental adjustments and become a ‘Landlord’, the lawyers have to document the current state of the property and put in compliance rules for both sides, all interests are respected, all investments are protected!

Then in less than a week I had a listing at 55 W. Delaware go from being for sale to being rented out.  All the while there is more buyer activity than there has been in years at some of my other Sale listings.  Whew!

I’m always looking to improve, and the New York market has been stronger than Chicago and I wanted to know why.  Who better to talk to than The Corcoran Group, one of the most successful High End real estate offices in Manhattan. 

Sure, I saw a play while I was in the Big Apple, and had lunch at the stunningly elegant Metropolitan Club of New York, right across from Central Park, but mostly it was work and listening to some of the more successful brokers in the country talk about how they are doing.

One beautiful piece of Manhattan that we could easily emulate here in Chicago is their elevated freight railway line on the West Side of Manhattan that was converted into a beautiful urban Park, called the High Line!  It is a huge success, an oasis in amongst the most urban of settings.

Guess what?  Did you know that Chicago’s own Wicker Park has an extensive elevated rail line that could be developed in a similar fashion?  Yes, it is the Bloomingdale Trail, and I encourage you to learn about it and if you are inspired I hope you’ll give it your support.

Finally, one of my favorite Holiday events is over at Tales in the City, that sweet little doggie boutique over on West Delaware!  They are having their annual Pictures with Santa on Saturday and Sunday.  The money raised goes to the Anti-Cruelty Society.  What a great event for a great cause.

See you Soon!

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