How do these $2.4 million smart homes stack up? – Chicago Tribune
Ultramodern, have-it-all spaces come head-to-head in the following two homes — both currently on the market for just shy of $2.4 million.
For that price, buyers aren’t necessarily forced to compromise square footage or green space, but the question of “where” looms.
Tom McCarey of @properties, the listing agent for both properties, nails it down to this: “Typically in real estate it’s always going to come down to location … you’re not going to get the same folks looking at these houses.”
City versus suburbs? You decide.
City: 1112 W. Lill Ave., $2,395,000
This home is seated in the Lincoln Park area, west of Jonquil Park, where you can trot out tots or spread a blanket for movies in the park come summer. Blocks’ character quickly changes in this neighborhood; the home’s immediate surrounding is residential, but a five-minute walk to Lincoln or Racine avenues lands you among restaurants and retailers aplenty.
Pro: McCarey calls this space “mammoth” by city standards. The smart home — allowing you to remotely control a range of features, such as security, lighting, heating and cooling — has four levels of living space, the top floor being a master suite with private terrace. On the other levels, the design is modern transitional with a two-story window wall, open space and tall ceilings.
Con: Vertical living can take its toll. With no elevator, the home could present issues for families with significantly older or younger members, or those with physical limitations. If you often dread climbing stairs, this home may not be your top pick.
From the agent: “People come in craving a modern template, which is hard to find in Chicago,” says McCarey, noting that some larger homes may have a more traditional aesthetic.
Size: 5,200 square feet
Beds, baths: 4, 51/2
Location: Wrightwood Neighbors neighborhood in Lincoln Park community area
Year built: 2012
Distance to downtown (City Hall): 5.8 miles
Parking: Two-car detached garage topped with a deck
Coffee: Three-minute walk to Starbucks, eight-minute walk to The Bagelers Coffeehouse, 12-minute walk to Bourgeois Pig Cafe
Grocery: Seven-minute walk to Whole Foods Market, five-minute drive to Treasure Island Foods, six-minute drive to Trader Joe’s
Restaurants: Six-minute drive to Juno Sushi; six-minute walk to Barrelhouse Flat, a cocktail bar with upscale bites; five-minute walk to Lou Malnati’s Pizzeria; five-minute walk to Prost!, a bar specializing in German cuisine and beer
Taxes: $32,100 in 2015
HOA Fees: None
Schools: Alcott College Prep East Elementary Campus, Lincoln Park High School; Chicago Public Schools
Suburbs: 1521 Forest Ave. in River Forest, $2,395,000
About 11 miles west of downtown Chicago, you’ll find this suburban nook known for Frank Lloyd Wright-designed homes, leafy greens and wide streets. It’s a tight-knit community with a small-town feel that’s not too removed from city and rubs shoulders with neighboring Oak Park.
Pro: This home blends Frank Lloyd Wright Prairie-style architecture with modern twists. A mix of cedar, copper and stone make up what looks like four cubes fused together. The shape paves the way for three levels of living space complemented with smart-home features, window walls, a floating wood staircase and high ceilings.
Con: If you’re looking for an authentic historic home — as these are common in the area — this isn’t it.
From the agent: “It’s very posh and luxurious but it doesn’t make you feel like it’s unlivable,” says McCarey. “When you look at the pictures it looks as if it’s coming from an art magazine, but it’s actually very livable.”
Size: 7,768 square feet
Beds, baths: 4, 5
Location: River Forest
Year built: 2005
Distance to downtown (City Hall): 13 miles
Parking: Three-car attached garage
Coffee: Two-minute drive to Massa Cafe Italiano, five-minute drive to Starbucks, seven-minute drive to Blue Max Coffee
Grocery: Five-minute drive to Costco, six-minute drive to Jewel-Osco, seven-minute drive to Meijer
Restaurants: Three-minute walk to Jim & Pete’s, an Italian restaurant; five-minute walk to Russell’s Barbecue; six-minute walk to Armand’s Pizzeria
Taxes: $36,654 in 2015
HOA Fees: None
Schools: Willard Elementary School, Lincoln Elementary School and Roosevelt Middle School of River Forest Public School District 90; Oak Park and River Forest High School
*Note: Some VHT Studios photos are “virtually staged,” meaning they have been digitally altered to represent different furnishing or decorating options.