Monthly ArchiveMay 2011



chicago-condos & Chicago Real Estate pcherry on 25 May 2011

More Condos Could Switch To Rental

May 25, 2011 - Yesterday we talked about how the high number of Chicago real estate developers switching their condo towers to rental, selling bulk blocks of units to investors who lease them or developers scrapping projects altogether is helping to reduce the number of excess unsold downtown Chicago condos.

A recent Crain’s article quoted a new report from Appraisal Research Counselors as saying that, “Not knowing whether the bottom has been reached in prices, concerned about the continued weakness in the economy and job market, and finding it difficult to sell existing residences and finance new acquisitions, many people are opting for the easier decision — to rent.”

Some of the developments we are keeping an eye on are Silver Tower, where 82 unsold condos are up for sale both in bulk and individually. That deal could be a prime target for investors who will lease the units.

Another tower with a lot of unsold condos is 235 Van Buren. CMK Development, the developer of this his 46 story, 714 unit tower, is currently suing buyers of 27 units who either haven’t or can’t close their sales contracts. Only 357 condos have closed, according to Appraisal Research Counselors, and 123 are under contract. Prices start at $189,000 so there isn’t a lot of wiggle room and it’s certainly a possibility that the developer could find an investor to take the units off his hands and convert them to rental.

Of course everything is speculation until a bulk sale acctually takes place and the new buyer announces a leasing option, but the two developments mentioned above are ones to watch. Unitl then, there are plenty of other Chicago condos for rent.

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chicago-condos & Chicago Real Estate & downtown chicago condos pcherry on 24 May 2011

Developers Switching To Rental Decreasing Downtown Condo Glut

May 24, 2011 - The recent Chicago real estate developments that have, in one form or another, switched from market rate condos for sale to rental units is helping to reduce the over supply of downtown Chicago condos. Investors have bought large blocks of condos in developments like Astoria Tower and are leasing them. Even the Gold Coast Walton on the Park is now renting units. And with the 82 unsold condos in Silver Tower up for sale, there is a good chance that those might be converted to rental as well.

A recent Crain’s article states that according to Appraisal Research Counselors, there were only 174 downtown condos sold during the first quarter of 2011. Last year (2010) there were 256 downtown condos sold in the first quarter.

But the good news for developers is that ARC reports that there were 2,031 unsold downtown Chicago condos at the end of the first quarter of this year (2011). There were 4,182 unsold downtown Chicago condos at the end of the first quarter last year (2010) and a whopping 8,222 unsold downtown Chicago condos at the end of the first quarter of 2008. ARC said in the article that the number of unsold downtown condos is close to the low levels in 1997, which is when they starting keeping records.

The drop in excess condo inventory isn’t due to sales but because of developers scrapping projects and the conversion to rental. Marketing firm Garrison Partners CEO and president Garry Benson told Crain’s that he believes that around six more downtown condo towers will switch to rental before the year is over.

Tomorrow we’ll speculate on which developments might be offering Chicago condos for rent in the future if sales don’t improve.

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chicago-condos & Chicago Real Estate & Chicago Homes pcherry on 23 May 2011

Lexington Homes Offers Guaranteed Leasing Assistance Program

May 23, 2011 - More Chicago real estate developers have been offering assistance to homeowners who want to purchase a new Chicago condo, rowhome or townhome but are having a hard time selling their current home. There are developers out there who offer to market a potential buyer’s house or condo if the homeowner signs a purchase agreement to buy a new condo. But even with professional help it sometimes takes a significant amount of time to sell. Now at least one developer is offering to lease a buyer’s home for them if they will purchase a new rowhome.

According to a recent press release, Lexington Homes is launching their program in partnership with Marketplace Homes. With this program, current homeowners who want to purchase one of the Lexington Square rowhomes in Bridgeport but can’t sell their existing home can get a “guaranteed lease” for up to six years. The homeowner will get a monthly payment even if the home isn’t leased yet. Utilities, repairs and any maintenance is taken care of by Marketplace Homes and if the company manages to sell the home then the owner will get 100% of the asking price, according to the press release.

The rowhomes at Lexington Square have three bedrooms, 2.5 baths, a rooftop deck, from 2,216 to 2,507 square feet and an attached two car garage. The three story rowhomes also come with a fenced front yard, balcony off the kitchen, hardwood floors, brushed nickel lighting fixtures, 42 inch maple cabinets, granite counter tops, GE stainless steel appliances and marble or granite vanity tops in the baths.

Prices for these rowhomes start in the $370,000s.

There are a lot of options out there if you’re looking for Chicago homes for rent and even a few new options for owners who want to rent or sell their Chicago home.

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