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Old 06-03-2011, 08:02 PM
 
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My family of four, two dogs, and three horses is making the move to Chicago later this year, so we're looking at houses. Our jobs will be at Northwestern and in the Loop and (rarely) Highland Park, so we figure living on the north side of the city would make it easier to commute. It would be nice to have public transportation options to the loop, but we'll be able to drive to Northwestern if needed.

So, we're looking for either a 3+ acre horse property or a 'burb near a horse stable. They don't seem to be too plentiful near where we need though. We'd prefer a commute of forty minutes or less. We've got around a $1 million budget.

Thanks!
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Old 06-04-2011, 07:32 AM
 
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Hi, I am not really that knowledgeable on the whole equestrian thing, but I have lived in the Northern Suburbs for my entire life. If you are working at NU in Evanston and commuting downtown and occasionally to Highland Park, I would prob. suggest the Eastern side of Glenview/Golf or maybe Morton Grove, as there are two stables there; Freedom Woods at 9501 Austin Ave. and Glen Grove Equestrian Center at 9453 Harms Road. Your price range in this economy could buy you a pretty nice home.
You would have to go pretty far out to get a large acreage for that money, and your commute would be challenging. I am sure there are other stables, however, those are the closest that I am aware of near the inner northern burbs. Those areas have good schools and are near Metra train for city, and highways. El train is also in Skokie and not that far. Metra train would definitely be under 40 mins, but driving to loop in rush hour could sometimes take a little longer. The EL would also take longer, closer to an hour, when I took it daily to the Loop. You definitely will need to stay in a close suburb or neighborhood in city for that.
Hope that helps you. Good luck
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Old 06-04-2011, 09:18 AM
 
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Thanks so much! I called over to both stables and they've both got space and good rates, so those are great options! How are the park districts and activities for kids in those areas?
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Old 06-04-2011, 10:23 AM
 
Location: Not where you ever lived
11,543 posts, read 28,543,341 times
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Lake County not far from Galena and the Fox River is horse country. The properties are large and zoned for horses Chet Everett can tell you more about the area. I don't know what the commute would be, and I suspect it won't be much fun, but....
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Old 06-04-2011, 01:30 PM
 
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Evanston is a bit of challenge commute wise from anyplace that would be zoned for horses, through a fairly modest budget for the region and even the closest horse zoned parcels are a long shot.

The town that probably is closest might be Oak Brook, and there may be a handful of parcles zoned for horses currently onnthe market, but even raw land with no structures would probably be over $1M, toss in a outdated by technically habitable residence and the it would be hard to stay under $1.25M even if you were OK with home that might front a busy road... Oak Brook to Evanston would be about an hour most rush hour -- Highland Park might add 30 minutes.

I doubt you would do better looking at horse properties to the southwest, any additional land you'd get would mean a longer commute.

West you would need to out past Barrington -- Huntly might actually have some good values on farmettes that are zoned for horses and there are several equine vets out that way. Commute to Evanston would likely exceed 90 minutes and heading up to Highland Park should be at least that long...

Southern Lake Co has very few true horse properties these days, the handful stuff that has not been resubdivived near Long Grove probably are adjacent to retail. Prices are probably still hovering in the unrealistic territory that existed when developers were actively seeking tear downs...

Central Lake County would be a nice commute to Higland Park, with places around Libertyville or Mettawa being prime targets for horse owners. Of course those large tracts also come with prices at least as large as Barrington or Oak Brook per acre AND even less of the compact spreads ever on the market...

If you are OK with boarding you animals Glenview would be a tolerable commute to either Evanston or Highland Park, though despite prices coming down a bit there are still many many homes that will bust your budget. Fortunately if you shop smart and are willing to stay at four or fewer bedrooms you should be able to get something more than acceptable. Glenview schools are mostly well regarded and there are a ton of activities for families.
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Old 06-04-2011, 04:24 PM
 
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Glenview is a nice family suburb with a very good park district, that offers tons of different activities and venues. There are some nice neighborhoods that would not be all that far from those stables and trails. The forest preserve is right there and it has a sort of country like feel to it, though you are also near to many things such as restaurants and shopping etc. Keep in mind that Glenview is a very large suburb, so you will need to zero in on the parts that are close to your horses.

I am just a person and not a realtor, but depending on what you are looking for there are tons of houses on the market. One million should be able to get you a nice house, maybe not an estate, but a more than decent family home.
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Old 06-04-2011, 08:00 PM
 
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Mettawa which is on the same Metra line as Highland Park and Evanston, as well as being right off I94 has a lot of horses. You might look into whats available property wise there.
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Old 06-04-2011, 08:06 PM
 
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Great! Thanks for all the advice so far! I'm thinking Glenview will be on the top of our list. As great as it would be to have the large horse property, Mettawa/Libertyville/Barrington would have a really long commute.
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Old 06-04-2011, 08:16 PM
 
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I actually live in the Mettawa area and my commute is an hour door to door by Metra. I know that's too long for a lot of people but in reality it's only 10-15 minutes more than anywhere else.

Also be sure to check out property taxes on properties because in Lake County they are particularly high.

Last edited by chicagojlo; 06-04-2011 at 08:25 PM..
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Old 06-04-2011, 09:12 PM
 
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It's not so much the commute on the Metra that would bug me (because I would be able to read and my husband would be doing the commute with me), but more the hours I work and the need to get to Evanston (which would half to be by driving).
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