One of my favorite aspects of Chicago is our neighborhood-centric downtown, and just how vastly different each neighborhood is from the next. Of course, it’s the same formula that makes up each area--houses, streets, trees, rinse and repeat, but somehow the end result can feel entirely different even with half a mile difference. I think a lot of it stems from the age of our city, and the cultural background that each neighborhood stems from. Chicagoans are big on maintaining tradition and I think this has paid off in spades with the diversity of housing options.
As a real estate broker, I relish in the diversity, and think of “neighborhood education” as a big part of my job. A very short story that occurs nearly every weekend: Mr. and Mrs. Buyer are dead set on Lincoln Park, but after showing them five to ten properties within their price range, we are stuck. They want more square footage, but can’t afford the hefty price tag. I then swoop in with a number of options--Bucktown, Lincoln Square, Ukrainian Village are my current favorites--and they are all shock and amazement by how much further the dollar goes. Busby Realty Group to the rescue!
Are you in a similar situation? Education never hurt anyone, right? That’s why today I’m sharing my thoughts on these three neighborhood gems, and why they should be on your consideration list!
Bucktown: Ok yes, I may be totally biased because I live in Bucktown with my family, but it really is such a wonderful neighborhood. In terms of inventory, Bucktown has it all: condos, duplexes, and single family homes--and right now there is a decent selection in each category. Also, for those with more modern leaning tastes, most of the new construction here leans in this direction. The retail out this way is amazing, even rivaling Southport Corridor. And in lieu of the lake we have the 606 Trail, so there are still tons of outdoor activity options.
Lincoln Square: Lincoln Square is a small neighborhood north of the city that has it all--amazing local restaurants, the Brown Line and Metra, cute shops, good schools, a great library, and also close to the highway. The feel in Lincoln Square is very suburban-leaning, so a great compromise for those who want proximity to the city with more green space. For families, many of the city’s best child-oriented businesses also happen to be located in the area: Little Kickers soccer, Goldfish Swim School, and Old town School of Music. There are tons of single family homes in this area, but also a decent amount of condos.
Ukrainian Village: I’ve been watching as more and more single family homes go up in this area, and it’s very exciting. What is amazing about Ukrainian Village is the location. For those who need the highway, it is close, but not too close. There are also more and more parks and restaurants popping up along Chicago Ave. I love the diversity of housing options here too. Lots of exciting new construction, but also cute old cottages, and plenty of nice condos too.
If you are currently looking to buy, but things aren’t flowing like you hoped, sometimes I think the best thing you can do is take a step back and try a different way in. Maybe it is that your dream home is waiting for you, it is just in a different location than expected!