Despite a nearly yearlong run of falling residential sales, Chicago’s luxury market is riding high.
Brian Campbell of the Blackhawks sold his seven-year-old residence at 1235 West Belden Avenue in Lincoln Park for $2.8 million.
A recent survey from online real estate brokerage Redfin shows that Chicago’s residential sales don’t match the ascendant national trend—and actually fell 3.5 percent over October 2013. But that sobering stat doesn’t reflect the luxury market, where high end is in high demand. @properties broker Susan Maman and Tim Sheahan, broker and principal with Conlon/Christie’s International Real Estate, tell buyers what they need to know to navigate today’s fast-paced luxury market.
Give us a sense of the numbers. What are your recent big deals? Susan Maman: The two highest priced, non-private sales in Glencoe were both lakefront mansions that sold in 4 to 6 weeks. The highest, 607 Longwood Avenue, is a newer-construction property that went for $8 million in 2013. Another interesting number is the Pabst mansion at 443 Sheridan Road; it sold for $4.8 million in 19 days in August and was my second-highest sale of 2014. Tim Sheahan: New construction is so big right now that we’ve developed deep expertise in this area. We sold former Blackhawk Brian Campbell’s seven-year-old Lincoln Park residence at 1235 West Belden Avenue for $2.8 million in October. But our two other big sales really showcase the market trend. Both are penthouses of new construction low-rises on North Halsted Street: 1855, which was listed for $2.2 million, sold in a month, and 1851, which was priced at $2.55 million, sold by word of mouth and hasn’t broken ground yet, so it won’t close until 2016.
What do these properties say about the current state of the market? TS: They really show what’s going on in luxury. There’s such pent-up demand that almost everything really good is selling before it hits the market, broker to broker. And since we represent a lot of builders doing luxury homes, other brokers come to us immediately for their clients who want new construction. That way they hear about things long before they’re listed. SM: In one respect, Tim’s run on new construction matches my sales, because I’m finding that whether something is vintage or new at the high end, it has to be in perfect condition. And when it’s priced right—especially those properties that are in prime locations like lakefront or on Sheridan Road—it goes immediately. That’s because of the way we market now.
Properties like this one at 494 Sheridan Road in Glencoe usually sell immediately because of their stellar location.
How do you market now? SM: @properties is known for its cutting-edge tech and marketing services. We’ve developed what I think is the most sophisticated agent app in the business. It’s like a dating service; it lets all 1,500-plus @properties agents match buyers and sellers all day long—and to be frank, all the good high-end listings go fast.
Are these trends holding for your current listings? TS: Absolutely. I’ll be marketing a new construction property at 1649 West Grace Street for $2.8 million, and I’m already getting calls on it. It’s all broker relationships now because buyers can scour listings themselves online. And we just sold two houses in Roscoe Village in weeks for 99 percent of list. SM: I’m seeing the same thing. A listing that just went live at 494 Sheridan Road in Glencoe for $3.349 million is seeing a flurry of activity. These luxury listings close fast because there are no mortgage contingencies, since nearly all of our luxury buyers—about 95 percent—pay cash. Susan Maman, 847-878-5235; Tim Sheahan, 773-968-9889;