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Old 02-02-2011, 03:23 PM
 
4 posts, read 7,683 times
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Hi,

I'm planning on buying a condo in the Near West Side by Madison/Western. I'm drawn to the area because I think there's some great deals on new condos and I think the area will become developed when the economy comes back. I drive to and from work and rarely take public transit except to go to the loop when weather is weather. Do you think safety will be an issue? And do you think this will be a good investment for the next 5-7 years or so?

Thanks!
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Old 02-02-2011, 05:17 PM
 
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I would be very reluctant to buy a new condo from a developer when there are boatloads of foreclosures out there selling for a fraction of prices during the boom. You pay a premium for a new condo and when you go to sell it you no longer have a new condo to sell. Also, if the developer fails to sell out and fails you are in a very difficult position when the bank pukes out unsold units or they are bought in bulk and turned into rentals thereby making it hard for buyers in the project to get financing.

Western and Madison may not reach a critical mass of gentrification for as long time. I would not choose to live there nor would I invest my money there. But neighborhood choice is a personal one and you may feel more comfortable in any given area than another person would.

A lot depends on what you want and what price you are willing to pay.
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Old 02-02-2011, 06:35 PM
 
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The condo was a short-sale. I've been focusing in that area because you can get 2 bed/2bath condos that's updated (hardwood floors, stainless steel appliances, granite, etcetc) with included parking around the 100-150K range. It's also very close to the highway. The place is a steal..but the only concerns I have are about safety, and whether this area will be developed in the future so it'll be a good investment...
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Old 02-02-2011, 07:10 PM
 
Location: Berwyn, IL
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That part of West Town has so much potential, on paper. It's super close to transportation and the loop, so if you did work there, it'd be convenient.

During the boom, there was probably sufficient reason to believe that it would get better, but now nobody is sure. I would probably bet against it gentrifying anytime soon; You've got East Garfield Park and Humboldt Park in close proximity, and that is not in your favor.

Is there nothing in your price range that is further east? Like maybe east of Ashland?
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Old 02-02-2011, 07:42 PM
 
Location: Chicago
1,949 posts, read 4,523,568 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loveholic View Post
The condo was a short-sale. I've been focusing in that area because you can get 2 bed/2bath condos that's updated (hardwood floors, stainless steel appliances, granite, etcetc) with included parking around the 100-150K range. It's also very close to the highway. The place is a steal..but the only concerns I have are about safety, and whether this area will be developed in the future so it'll be a good investment...
There is a reason why they are so cheap. If I were you I would look a bit further south over 290 around Taylor and Western. You of course wont find places as nice for so cheap tho. Others are correct that the area does have a whole lot of potential, but I think it will take years to be considered safe
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Old 02-02-2011, 07:46 PM
 
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I would love to be east of Ashland but in my price range there's no way I can get an updated 2 bed/2bath there unfortunately.

Yes, on paper it seems like it'll be smart to invest now in all the foreclosures/short sales in the area. It's close to the highway, el, and the loopl. The new skate rink is on Madison and Pete's Fresh Market is supposed to be built on Madison/Western. There's a lot of newly built condos in the area and it's near the Medical District so rental market may be good for UIC med students. So it SEEMS like it'll be developed.....right?
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Old 02-02-2011, 07:57 PM
 
Location: Berwyn, IL
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You would think that.

If UIC students live off campus (or, if they're med students) many of them live in the immediate area, east pilsen, or bridgeport. I don't think many of them are ballsy enough to go west. I think you would have to see more desirable commerce pop up first.
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Old 02-02-2011, 08:14 PM
 
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This is a much safer area than Western, has the benefit of UIC police, and lots of foreclosures and short sales.

University Commons, Chicago, short sales and foreclosures
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:20 PM
 
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The Madison and Western area has had a lot of condo development in recent years and does not resemble what it used to. But for all the potential that the area has location wise, highway etc...it may indeed be some time before it reaches its potential. Price wise it is cheap in that area, but there is an abundance of unsold condos in the area as well. I've heard some people mention that many of the unsold condos are going the section 8 route due to the slow sales market. I would agree on the fact that you could probably find as good a deal near the taylor,western area or even pilsen and still have those conveniences and a bit more peace of mind. For your price range maybe you want to even consider buying a 2 unit or single family home instead of the condo. Just my 2 cents.
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Old 02-02-2011, 11:01 PM
 
Location: Chicago
4,091 posts, read 3,643,683 times
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Madison and Western is a little more than kinda shady. If you move there, expect to be a prisoner in your own home until the area gentrifies more (A LOT more). I would not walk around or take public transit,use your car to go places.
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