North Harbor Drive

Observations and insights into real estate happenings along N. Harbor Dr. in downtown Chicago

East Randolph Street, Chicago

Andersonville Midsommarfest Starting Tomorrow Evening

June 6th, 2013 · Uncategorized

While this isn’t exactly downtown, I did want to share info about one of this year’s first major street fests – Andersonville Midsommarfest – starting tomorrow evening! In past year’s I’ve really enjoyed the kid’s entertainment and street performers. On Clark St. running north from Clark & Foster.

“Midsommarfest is Andersonville’s annual summer street festival, now entering its 48th year. Each year, nearly 50,000 people throng Clark Street from Foster to Catalpa for two days of music, dancing, kids’ entertainment, and delicious food. Vendors from around the region sell their wares to passers-by, while ethnic dance troupes and cutting-edge bands keep the party going.”

Some links —

The Yelp reviews are very positive. If you’ve not been so impressed with some other street fests that nominally have everything “music, dancing, kid’s entertainment, delicious”, etc. but not been to Midsommarfest, this one deserves a shot.

Check out the line-up, Abba Salute plays Saturday evening.

My kids have an Ice Skating show dress rehearsal and performance this weekend so I’m not entirely sure we’ll make it this year, but hopefully Sat night and Sunday afternoon!

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Chicago’s Downtown Monroe Harbor is Only 62% Used

June 5th, 2013 · Uncategorized

When jogging along the lakefront and looking out over Lake Michigan from our roof at the Parkshore, I’ve been curious why Monroe Harbor didn’t look very full yet this year, turns out almost 2 out of 5 slips in Monroe Harbor aren’t going to be used at all this year.

Crain’s Chicago reports that the overall vacancy rate for all harbors is about 25% (1 in 4 boat slips are not being used). It used to be difficult to find a spot in the City of Chicago’s Park District harbors, and a new deep harbor recently opened at 31st street, which unfortunately is being utilized only about 20%. The average cost for a slip is about $1,500 per year.

Read more on Crain’s

Another interesting fact is that there is once again a Venetian Night in Chicago, sort of a Venetian Lite at the new 31st street harbor.

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850 N. Lakeshore Drive Project Moving Forward

June 5th, 2013 · Uncategorized

Among last month’s real estate news I see the former Lakeshore Athletic Club building on Lake Shore Drive is finally being redeveloped. The developer received an $80M loan and is converting the 805 N. Lakeshore Dr. property into 200 apartments. As always, if you are looking for a rental or looking to buy downtown or anywhere around Chicago, please consider letting me help you with your search!

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2 bedroom, 2 bathroom for rent, unit 2505 at the Parkshore!

May 11th, 2013 · Uncategorized

I had the listing 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom for rent, unit 2505 at the 195 N Harbor for June 1st move in. The listing price is $2,700 including one self parking space. We have rented out for the full listing price. This unit is facing south, with nice view to the Monroe Harbor and the lake, the Grant Park… This unit offering split floor plan which is nice for family or roommate situation. It has around 1,200 square feet with open kitchen. The owner is doing recarpet, fresh paint and professionally clean the unit.

As we all know that it is hard to show unit with current tenants in there, especially if it is messy, dirty stuff… But it is nice that the owner is freshing up the apartment to make it nice! Then it is very easy to rent it out.

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Nice one bedroom unit 2207 at the 195 N Harbor sold in 3 days!

April 15th, 2013 · Uncategorized

I have just listed this unit for sale on Thursday morning, this is a one bedroom unit with around 706 square feet. Listing price is $275k including a parking space, in unit washer and dryer.  I had 3 showings on Thursday, 3 on Sat and we got a contract on Sunday afternoon! So the market definitely picked up…. I wish that I have 3 more listings like this…

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Housing market is warming up very quickly

February 2nd, 2013 · Uncategorized

Winter is still here, the weather is so cold in Chicago, normally these are very slow months with very little people coming out to see properties. However this year, people are eager to get into the real estate market, even it is right after the holidays. Seems people does not want to take a break, everyone is ready to offer or sell.

I have helped my customers writing quite a few offers, only 2 of them got accepted. These two customers were both offered to other properties but got overbid a couple of times, so that they understand that they need to come up on price and also has to offer in a very reasonable price, otherwise it will leave too much space and time for the others to come in.  For example, one of the offers we made is within 4 hours and the price is within 97% of the asking price, therefore, the seller has accepted our offer and we had a signed contract within 24 hour of the listing.

At the same time, my customer has lost a few listings, some of them we get to see the property, some of them we did not even get to see the properties.

Right now, since the inventory level is so low, we should help our clients to get prepared, means to

1) get the pre approval letter  ready,

2) set up the auto search for them,

3)tell them to check email often,

4) make appointments to show them the properties as soon as they show interest,

5) send them the recent 6 months sold history for similar units in the building or in the neighborhood

6) tell them the urgency of making a reasonable offer.

Also, I have noticed that since the market is picking up fast, some of the listing price is low compare to the demand of the market, although they are quite reasonable compare to the other units sold. Therefore, when these kind of listings came up, we should tell our clients that there are not so much room for negotiation if they are interested in the unit as otherwise, they would be overbid by other buyers.

Last year, we still have enough active listings to pick from, so the difficult part for the buyer is to pick the right property and negotiate a good price. In 2013, it will not be an easy year for the buyers as the market is fluctuate so much, so it is hard to find the right property for buyers, if the buyers are not ready, you do not want to push them much, then your buyers will lose the all the good opportunities.

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3 short sale one bedroom at the regatta – the 420 waterside

January 10th, 2013 · Uncategorized

There are 3 similar units are all for sale at the Regatta – the 420 Waterside. Their listing prices are ranging from $300k to $388k with parking included in the price. Since this building was sold in 2006 and 2007, there are lots of investors bought in the building, therefore there are so many short sale in the building, however, there are not so many foreclosure units in the building, this was due to people likes the building and they could always sell it in the short sale process.

Regatta is a full amenity building with indoor swimming pool, gym, roof top deck, 24 hour doorman, party room, etc.

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Last 6 months activities at the Parkshore – the 195 Harbor Dr

January 10th, 2013 · Uncategorized

Within the last 6 month as of Jan 10, 2013, there are totally 8 units closed, 2 units pending and 6 units active on the market now. Within the closed properties, the closed price range is between $220k and $761k and there was 1 one bedroom unit, 4 two bedroom units, 2 two plus den units and one three bedroom unit. There is only 1 out of the 8 units was foreclosure, unit 206, the two bedroom plus den.

For the two current pending units, one is a foreclosure unit and the other one is an auction unit. I will post the closing price when they come out.

As for the active listings, the prices are ranging between $430k and $1.85m. There are 2 six bedroom for sale, 2 three bedroom for sale and 1 two plus den for sale and one two bedroom for sale.

From the about numbers, we can say that people are buying smaller units now, such as one bedroom and two bedroom units, however, if the three bedroom priced right, then it also got sold quickly, such as unit 403, which was closed a little more than 2 months after it was listed.


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Penthouse 3 bedroom plus den at the Parkshore is for sale!

November 28th, 2012 · Uncategorized

This is a large three bedroom plus den at the Parkshore, the 195 N Harbor Dr for sale. It is around 2,400 square feet. It faces southeast, has great views to the south shore line, the lake Michigan and the city skyline. The unit has been changed to a 2 plus den right now.

The auction for this unit was closed on Nov 27th and the price was started at 970K with 15K increases for each offer, the offer is cash only and it also including two parking spots and all the furniture and personal stuff in the unit. I will be anxious to see the final closing price for this deal.

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New two bedroom plus den foreclosure at the Parkshore – 195 N Harbor Dr

November 10th, 2012 · Uncategorized

There was a new two bedroom plus den foreclosure at the Parkshore – the 195 N Harbor Dr. This unit features wood floor through out the unit, it does have some built ins in the closet, the kitchen and bathrooms are updated. The listing price is $429,900 with a parking space included. This is on a very high floor with great views to the millennium pard and the lake. The unit has around 1,300 square feet. I think this will be a good purchase for self or investment, this unit can be rented out for 2,600 – 2,800 per month.

The Parkshore is a full amenity building with a lot to offer, the gym, the roof top pool, 24 hour door, 2 party rooms, tennis court, spa, grocery store on site.

During the time that I am writing up this blog, this unit has went pending:-)


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