Friday, March 31, 2017

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Chicago North Shore Real Estate and Neighborhoods

A Glimpse of Spring: First Impressions     
Spring has officially arrived. As the real estate market heats, up now is a good time to get your house ready to show. In my opinion, other than price, the showability and condition of the house are the most important aspects of obtaining an acceptable offer in a reasonable period of time.
As the old saying goes, “You only have one chance to make a good first impression” In today’s digital world that first impression is generally online. To paraphrase Rod Stewart, “Every Picture Tells a Story”
The first impression most people see "on-line" is the front of the house. Make it sparkle, especially as this is the yucky time of year when the grass is brown and the flowers are just starting to open up but have not bloomed yet.
Here are some ideas that I have shared with people:
  • §  A fall cleanup is beneficial, either by yourself or a landscape professional. Make sure the yard is neat, and the old dead flowers have been trimmed or removed.
  • §  Mulch. It is very inexpensive, provides uniformity and slows the growth of weeds.
  • §  Paint or power wash if possible. There are usually 3-4 day periods of weather warm enough to spot paint or power wash.
  • §  Clean up the yard. Just pick up any debris left over from the winter

  • §  Shovel the walk, steps, driveway and use salt and/or melting solution.

§  As the weather warms, do a spring cleanup. Same idea as above. New plants can be filled in, the beds dug, and new borders and more mulch added.

§  Lastly, think about landscaping. Usually a major landscape undertaking is not required, but adding a few bushes, annuals, creating nice borders and yes, adding more mulch, should do the trick. Sometimes just some nice potted plants by the entrance adds a splash of color and  provides an inviting look.

There are many landscapers in the area who are aware of the plants that are suitable for our area. Some use more ornamental varieties, some specialize in native plants.

Let me take you on a tour of the spring market to help you find your dream home or contact me if you just want to know the sale price of your neighbors’ home. For over 25 years, we have been the Realtors of choice from Chicagoland to Dairyland! Contact me at 847-409-0850 or  or check out our website:

Ciao! Ciao!


Thursday, March 23, 2017

Chicago North Shore Real Estate and Neighborhoods: A Glimpse of The North Shore and Chicago Real Estate Market Report

Happy Spring! Spring in Chicago is a combination of flowers and snow, winter coats, short sleeves, hats and flip-flops! Keep out your boots and mittens, just in case. Chicagoans are a tough group, just like the early flowers that bloom before, during, and after our late winter/early spring snow storms!
Spring is traditionally the busiest time of year for the real estate market. If you are a seller, there tend to be more buyers. If you are a buyer, there tends to be more inventory of homes for sale! Of course, each neighborhood has a different sub-market. Let's take a look at the most recent market report for the North Shore and Chicago, as we head into our busiest season:

Here are the links for the North Shore and Chicago Market Reports:

For a tour of your neighborhood, please contact me, or if you just want to find out want your neighbors' homes sold for,  you can reach me at 847-409-1550,  or
          We have been the realtors of choice from Chicagoland to Dairyland for over 25 years! 

Friday, March 17, 2017

Chicago North Shore Real Estate and Neighborhoods: A Glimpse of Logan Square

The past meets the present in the hipster haven of Chicago,
In the early 1980’s, Logan Square was  touted as one of the “hot” new neighborhoods in Chicago.  In reality, it was looking tired and worn. The historic buildings, the boulevards, the square, the train, and close proximity to downtown attracted urban pioneers. The TV show “This Old House, and host Bob Vila, was capturing the attention of “do it yourselfers” across the country. Local first time homebuyers were anxious to roll up their sleeves and restore the historic houses and apartment buildings on or near Logan Boulevard.

As a twenty-something renter, I was excited to jump in and rent one of these restored apartment flats! Due to the twists and turns of economic booms and busts, the renovation momentum was slow. It took decades, not years, to finally see a residential building boom and business renaissance along the commercial streets.

In 1918, its most recognized landmark , The Illinois Centennial Monument, was dedicated in honor of the 100th anniversary of  Illinois statehood. The pillar of the Monument at the “Square” was designed by Henry Bacon, (more famously noted for designing the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C.). The relief sculpture at the base was designed by Evelyn Longman.  An eagle sits atop the pillar!  

 Loosely inspired by the monument, and the  Inn and Pub days of the city,  the highly recommended "Longman & Eagle" has become one of the hippest spots in Logan Square, if not the city. It offers great food and cocktails. It also features an  Inn on the second floor, with  several chic rooms at reasonable rates! 

Revolution Brewing Co, Chicago Distilling Co, Whistler Bar, Jam for brunch, coffee shops, artist galleries, community garden and farmers markets and more, have  all contributed to creating the vibe for old and new residents of the area.

Real Estate trends: Many of the greystones and two-flats have been converted to renovated single family homes. Prices for single family homes range from as low as $200,000 to a million+. 2-4 flats range from $300,000 to a million+. Condos range from $100,000 to 700ish! Over 25% of the homes for sale are under 5 years old, or new construction, with more planned! This number doesn’t include all the renovated homes, so you have a great chance of finding the perfection renovation, or new construction!

Contact me if you want to know the sales price of your neighbors' properties, or you want a tour of Logan Square. We will help you find your dream home! 847-409-1550 or  or visit our website

For over 33 years, we have been the  the realtors of choice from Chicagoland to Dairyland. 
Bye for now,

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Chicago North Shore Real Estate and Neighborhoods: A Glimpse of Highwood

Highwood is a cool and interesting community on the North Shore. It is located between Highland Park and Lake Forest. Ft. Sheridan and Lake Michigan are located to the east. It is known as the “Entertainment District of the North Shore”. It has easy accessibility to Rt. 41 and the Tri-State Tollway, off Rt. 22 (Half Day Rd.). There are two commuter train stations, Highwood and Ft. Sheridan. There is a vibrant downtown with a number of independent boutiques, restaurants, and nightclubs/lounges. Highwood, to me, has always been about the bars and the restaurants! It has many entertainment events, including Garlic Fest, Bloody Mary Fest, Pumpkin Fest, Farmer’s Market and Highwood Days.

It is rumored that Tony Bennett always goes to one restaurant in Highwood when he is performing at Ravinia. Some of the best Italian food in the metropolitan area can be found here, from old school (grandmas Italian red sauce), a new Italian restaurant (Disotto) to French (Froggy’s), contemporary bistros, Miramar, several Mexican restaurants and more. There are small music venues, and neighborhood taverns with affordable cocktails. I also have it on very good authority that there is a new brewery opening soon. Eve and I will be at the grand opening. Can’t wait for the IPA and Stout. I will do my best investigating and let everyone know how it is. Highwood is also home to Skokie Valley Laundry and Dry Cleaners. You can see their trucks from the far south suburbs to the Wisconsin border. They are the premier hand laundry and dry cleaner in the metropolitan area. They are 70 years young and still going strong.

I was a youth football coach in Highwood for 3 years. We resurrected the Highwood Indians youth football team with great success. I really enjoyed working with Evon at the youth center, which provides an outlet for the local kids and community events.

Highwood real estate has a distinct architectural character. Many of the houses are 1920’s bungalows and turn-of-the-century 1.5 story and two-story properties. Highwood has good quality, affordable houses in relation to other North Shore areas. Ft. Sheridan is east of Highwood. It was the former Army training base. It has been converted to upscale condominiums, townhomes, and newer residence. There are still some old officer’s quarters for sale near the lake. During the conversion my father-in-law was looking for a new condominium. We asked if he was interested in looking in the Fort. He politely declined as he was in basic training there before WWII.

When thinking of Highwood, I think of Bocce. One of the few Bocce clubs in the area is located in Highwood. It hosted the international Bocce tournament a few years ago. My father came in from Cleveland to attend the tournament. He had such a great time and still talks about it.

Let me take you on a tour of Highwood to find your dream home,or if you want to know what to know the sale’s price of your neighbors’ homes, contact me.  For over 33 years, we have been the Realtor of choice from Chicagoland to Dairyland! 847-409-0850 or

Ciao! Ciao!


Thursday, March 2, 2017

Chicago North Shore Real Estate and Neighborhoods: A Glimpse of Wrigleyville in Lakeview

Lakeview is a favorite neighborhood for a first apartment, with loads of studios and one bedroom rentals available for reasonable prices. It’s near public transportation, Lake Michigan, and 208 or more places to eat, drink, or hang out!

Right smack in the middle of Lakeview lies Wrigleyville, home of our Chicago Cubs World Series Champions! With spring training underway in Arizona, Wrigleyville will be in “full swing” soon!

Celebrating the Win at Clark and Sheffield!

We worked at Clark and Sheffield for about 12 years. It wouldn’t be fair not to give homage to a few people and places dear to our hearts who are no longer with us or not there: #1: Howard Wilcox and The Wilcox Company, where we worked. Howard is gone, but not forgotten. The office is now a bar! Fortunately, our other favorite peeps from those days are still around, scattered about the city and country! Favorite hangouts back in the day were The El Jardin Cafe, Manny’s Pancakes, Mongolian House, The Wild Hare, and the original Penny’s Noodles! Fond memories. Gold Crown Liquor is still on the corner, albeit different owners!
STILL GOING STRONG: Check out Guthrie’s Tavern on Addison, D’Agostino’s Pizza at Southport and Addison (our favorite deep dish), and Metro Chicago.
NEW FAVORITE: Old Crow Smokehouse on Clark St. for some BBQ and live Country Music!

The neighborhood is a gorgeous mix of vintage 2-4 flats and rental properties, newer town homes, condos, and single families. In the 1980’s, the neighbors fought against lights at Wrigley Field, fearing wild times, drunk tourists, and general mayhem. It all came true, along with soaring property values, more bars, more live music establishments, and more restaurants along Clark Street. Upscale restaurants and fashionable boutiques opened at the western fringe along Southport. Although the crowds can get a little wild at times, I have to say, I love the neighborhood even more today!

Contact  us if you want to know the sales price of your neighbors' properties, or you want a tour of Wrigleyville. We will help you find your dream home! 847-409-1550 or
We are the realtors of choice from Chicagoland to Dairyland.