An Overview of Chicago Real Estate
Primarily because of its location, Chicago has become the third largest city in the United States. Its proximity to Lake Michigan and the Mississippi River makes it a natural hub for transportation and its position in the Midwest makes it a logical gateway between the West and East Coasts. With so much economic traffic moving through the city, it isn't surprising that Chicago also has the third largest gross product in the nation. With so much diversity in the city, Chicago attracts all sorts of people to the area.
Fortunately, the Chicago real estate market is as plentiful and varied as the people that move there. Condos, townhouses, apartments, single-family homes and even a few empty lots for building are available in and around the city. Unfortunately, even though there are a lot of options to choose from, they usually aren't that cheap. For example, rent for a typical apartment can be as much as $1,200 a month and the median price for a single-family home is about $250,000. Typically, the closer you are to the downtown area called The Loop, the more you will pay for housing. For example, apartments in the Chicago Spire, a new high-rise residential tower that is under construction, cost as much as $1,000 per square foot!
The neighborhoods in the South side cover almost sixty percent of the city's area and consequently have a lot of different housing options available but if you have a smaller budget, the West side would be a good section to start looking for a home because housing is a little cheaper in that area. The North side of Chicago, which is popular for its many parks, beaches and harbors, has some of the nicest homes and apartments around Chicago. Houses in the North side tend to be more expensive though and they sell pretty quickly because of demand.
Living in the suburbs does mean a longer commute to work, but public transportation like the EL (elevated train) can make that commute fast and affordable. Besides, some families truly prefer the slower pace of life and peaceful environment found in suburbs to the bustle of the city - especially when they have the option of taking occasional visits to the city for entertainment and shopping. Regardless of what your preferences are, it would probably be useful to have a local Chicago Realtor to show you around the city. After all, someone with insider knowledge can save you a lot of time.