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Old 06-03-2008, 10:03 PM
 
28,461 posts, read 76,474,758 times
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If you've followed the whole thread you should see that I have made several posts about the possibility/feasibility of utilizing the Chicago Public Schools. While not an impossibility to get into a good school as a transfer, it is not the norm and so far as I know the City makes no special provisions for "unconnected" folks moving into the City. Some of the magnet schools are excellent, but the hoops one needs to go through to secure a slot for ones children are extreme. Thus the existence of a network of highly expensive private schools...

Prices for single family detached homes close to Lake Shore Drive are generally in the "ohmigawd" territory and even at double $550K you would not be really in the hunt for much of house. Yes things are that crazy. Going inland the development pattern changes, but the desirability factor is far lower too. If you look threads about somewhat family oriented areas that are still kind of close to the lake front the starting prices are typically about $700K, not to mention the tax structure of the city is going to make the total cost of living in Chicago very high indeed...

Now, there are LOTS of places in Chicago that one could get a single family house for under $300K, but the distance to get from those neighborhoods to anyplace " liberal, tree hugging, vegetarian, urban hip"ster would dig are pretty daunting through in your desire for a MidCentury Modern house and that possibilty fall to ZERO...

My suggestion in your original thread stands: You have a very specific taste in homes, with a desire for a specific philosophy of living and desire to meet like minded people as a stay-at-home mom. Not going to be easy to find. I would rent in someplace where your husband would have a shortish commute and the whole family could MAYBE not have to switch school districts. Chicago itself does not fit the bill too well, while MAYBE Barrington or Highland Park or a couple of western burbs MIGHT.
One strategy might be to draw rings around the various Whole Foods stores in the region and map back the commute to get an idea of what'll work THEN go looking for the dream house. None of that is real easy...
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Old 06-03-2008, 10:31 PM
 
Location: Brisbane, Australia
961 posts, read 2,329,731 times
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Thanks again for your reply Chet! You really should be in real estate because you have a knack for listening to exactly what someone is looking for and interpreting it in real estate terms. It is so refreshing. I keep getting the "you're going to find your people wherever you end up in Chicago" from our agent. I tell her that I don't want to have to look that hard to find them and she just doesn't understand the importance being near like minded people holds for us. It isn't like compromising on small details about a house. IMO, the people around you make your experience. I would love to find a neighborhood where parents share most of the same values and live as a community. Am I living in a dream world? Does that really exist?

I think your suggestion about the Whole Paycheck...I mean Whole Foods radius is a good one. In fact, I always look at how far I'd have to drive to Whole Foods as that is where I do most of my grocery shopping along with Trader Joes.

I'd prefer to rent a month to month so I can check out the areas extensively and then locate a suitable house. The architecture is going to end up being the first to go since it is the least priority. I'll settle for a 1 story brick ranch to be with my fellow tree huggers.
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Old 06-03-2008, 10:49 PM
 
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I do make some money from real estate, but the work/reward ratio of being an agent was not working for me...

If you do pull the list of Whole Foods stores for all Illinois you see that Chicago has a bunch. I think that is mostly because they were too eager to get into urban markets, and I would focus on the areas closer to the suburban stores:

Deerfield, IL 60015
Evanston, IL 60201 (Close to Wilmette)
Evanston, IL 60202 (I think this is Central Evanston)
Hinsdale, IL 60521 (close to LaGrange and Western Springs)
Northbrook, IL 60062
Palatine, IL 60074-2922 (close to Barrington)
River Forest, IL 60305 (close to Oak Park)
Wheaton, IL 60187 (close to Glen Ellyn & Naperville)
Willowbrook, IL 60527 (Close to Burr Ridge and Downers Grove)

If the architecture is the least important and the community is most important it is going to be hardest for a regular Realtor to understand/convey that with out having a few tempeh lunches with you...

Even then, I am sure that you realize you MAY be in the minority whenever you decide to move and will want to make the best trade-offs only when you have a complete understanding of what each situation holds.
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Old 06-04-2008, 10:43 AM
 
11,973 posts, read 28,956,698 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaynetarzana View Post
How much are places on LSD? Our max is $550K.
$550K won't get you much in the city or North Shore suburbs. It won't even get you much in Oak Park (think small house near Austin that needs work). You may be forced to look further out in the burbs based on your budget, unless you can live with a condo or very small house.
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Old 06-05-2008, 07:08 PM
 
Location: Brisbane, Australia
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Actually, I'm finding a pretty good amount of decent homes under $550 on the north shore. Also, there are still plenty of overpriced homes that could be negotiated. You have to remember that prices are dropping every day and no end in sight yet. I think that once it is over $550K is going to buy more than you think.
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Old 06-06-2008, 10:42 AM
 
991 posts, read 1,443,865 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaynetarzana View Post
Actually, I'm finding a pretty good amount of decent homes under $550 on the north shore. Also, there are still plenty of overpriced homes that could be negotiated. You have to remember that prices are dropping every day and no end in sight yet. I think that once it is over $550K is going to buy more than you think.
I always liked Highland Park, where Ravinia is. The lots are bigger, and you get more house for your dollar than Winnetka or Wilmette. Highwood is more Hispanic, and even cheaper. Both are right next to Fort Sheridan.
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Old 06-06-2008, 10:46 AM
 
1,464 posts, read 5,118,563 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaynetarzana View Post
How much are places on LSD? Our max is $550K.
Forget that then lol! You're out. I think a bathroom there starts at about that.
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Old 06-06-2008, 11:00 AM
 
Location: Brisbane, Australia
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Speaking of Fort Sheridan, there is some pretty cool rehabbed urban looking housing in the fort. The only problem is that the elementary school isn't rated well. Otherwise, we'd be buying there most likely.
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Old 06-06-2008, 01:51 PM
 
28,461 posts, read 76,474,758 times
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Default It is sort "by design"...

Quote:
Originally Posted by jaynetarzana View Post
Speaking of Fort Sheridan, there is some pretty cool rehabbed urban looking housing in the fort. The only problem is that the elementary school isn't rated well. Otherwise, we'd be buying there most likely.
They are marketing these places to empty nesters. No kids, not as much pressure on the schools. Might work...
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Old 06-06-2008, 05:49 PM
 
Location: Brisbane, Australia
961 posts, read 2,329,731 times
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I've been told that the school has some issues and that kids are falling behind. Also, we really want to be in an area with lots of children and families. I don't want to feel isolated. I want to build a community around us. It doesn't sound like Fort Sheridan is a good place for that.
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