Reasons to Stay in Chicago and NOT move to the Suburbs

Chicago Schools – Can we live in the city or must we leave for the suburbs?

This is  the time of year when young Chicago parents are worried about whether junior will get in to a gifted program, a magnet school, a selective enrollment high school….

Chicago Schools Status

jones outsideSelective Enrollment/IB Notifications go out around 2/18
Elementary magnet and cluster school notifications will be mailed during the week of March 18

Everywhere in Chicago, potential buyers ask …

Should I  leave Chicago and Move to the Suburbs?

What should I consider as I think about city vs suburbs?

First, take a tour of these homes, currently for sale in the Chicago Multiple Listing Service and see if they are appealing.

Then, consider the financial and time cost, as well as the quality of life aspects of leaving Chicago for the suburbs:

1.  Real Total Cost of Home Ownership

Suburban Property Taxes are usually higher than city homes of comparable cost. For example, Wilmette homes (in the $600’s) report property taxes of $8.1K – $18.7K/yr vs comparably priced Chicago homes —  $5.5K – $11.1K.

Your REAL home cost for that $600K property may be $200/month higher in the suburbs!

2.  Commuting – Money and Time Drain


30 minutes more each way – 48 weeks per year – 240 hours lost!

Financial Cost

GAS — $120 per month+

  • 30 more miles per day x (5 days a week) -x (48 weeks per year) = 7200 more miles/year
  • 20 mpg means 360 more gallons per year and @ #4 per gallon you’ll spend
  • $120 more per month ($1440 per year)
  • This doesn’t include additional costs for car maintenance and depreciation due to miles driven

City Parking

If you switch from CTA to driving, you need to put your car somewhere. How much would you have to pay to park?

$200? $300? $460?

Commuter Train Issues – Flexibility and Financial Cost

Giving up flexibility to follow a CTA schedule is a challenge for some. Would you walk to the suburban train station or do you need to wait for years to get a parking lot permit? How much does it cost to park in the train’s lot? This doesn’t include, of course, the cost of the tickets themselves (from Naperville-59 to the city, the monthly rate is over $100), an this doesn’t include transit to the station nor parking.

3.  Quality of Life

Time away from Loved Ones

240 Hours+ per year just in commuting (see above)

Stress Level and Lifestyle

Do you get stressed in traffic jams? Is independence of schedule important?

Productivity – how important is your time? What could you do with the 240+ extra hours of commuting time?

Do you enjoy gathering with co-workers? Living far from work makes social flexibility difficult.

Benefits of raising children in the city – diversity, culture, education. I’ll write more of these in my next “Parenting in Chicago” post. This topic is worth a whole article (I’m very PRO-city for children!)


Don’t get me wrong – suburban living has it’s merits. I have many friends who are currently there, too. Many, though, are plotting their return. Others wonder why they didn’t consider staying in the city in the first place.

Whatever your choice, be sure to consider all the angles.

If you are interested in talking more about

  • The Chicago School Application Process,
  • Finding homes in Chicago Neighborhood Schools Districts,
  • Taking a tour of homes in the city and the suburbs to compare, or
  • Learning more about raising kids in the city —

Chicago Real Estate - Anne Rossley of Baird & Warner

Call me!  I have 15 years experience navigating the Chicago private and public school systems – I would be delighted to be a resource for you!

chicago real estate Anne Rossley Baird & Warner
Anne Rossley
Baird & Warner







*homes in Lakeview, Lincoln Square, Uptown, Edgewater

Carbon Monoxide Deaths in Rogers Park

Two people have died, and 2 others are hospitalized this morning, apparently due to carbon monoxide poisoning, reports the Chicago Tribune.

Chicago CO Ordinance

carbon monoxide detectors required in chicago real estateChicago requires that all homes and apartment buildings have working carbon monoxide detectors (see city page with details), and on all my home inspections, we look to make sure they’re installed and in working order.

In 2007, Illinois passed the Carbon Monoxide Law:

Effective January 1, 2007, every Illinois home is required to have at least one carbon monoxide alarm in an operating condition within 15 feet of every room used for sleeping purposes. Homes that do not rely on the burning of fuel for heat, ventilation or hot water; are not connected to a garage; and are not near a source of carbon monoxide (as determined by the local building commissioner) are not required to install carbon monoxide detectors. (Public Act 94-741)

Causes of CO Poisoning

According to the University of Chicago, non-vented heaters using kerosene or gas are the most common cause of carbon monoxide deaths. Other potential causes include:

  • malfunctioning cooking appliances
  • tobacco smoke
  • clogged chimney
  • auto exhaust
  • malfunctioning water heater
  • malfunctioning oil, wood, gas or coal furnaces
  • malfunctioning gas clothes dryer
  • wood burning fireplace, decorative fireplace, gas log burner, or any unvented space heater
  • appliances in cabins or campers, barbecue grills, lack of adequate ventilation, pool/spa heaters, ceiling-mounted heating units

Most of the deaths occur in winter.

Preventing CO Poisoning

By implementing routine home care procedures, we can all protect ourselves against carbon monoxide.

1. Check your carbon monoxide detectors today! If they’re not working, check the batteries, and get new ones if necessary.

2. Clean out your clothes dryer

3. Get your chimney cleaned

4. Do not use space heaters unless they’re properly vented.

5. Have annual check-ups for your boiler, furnace, hot water heaters.

The Illinois Dept of Health has other great suggestions for staying safe (see their article). Make it a habit to check your smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detectors every spring and fall when we switch back and forth from Daylight Savings Time. Why then? No particular reason – it’s just a good habit to have!

Other links:

Realtor info Sheet on Carbon Monoxide in Illinois

Dangers of Carbon Monoxide

CDC Answers Carbon Monoxide Questions

Illinois Dept of Health Carbon Monoxide

EPA Article on Carbon Monoxide


Chicago Parent Updates

Chicago Parents – it’s that time of year!

Selective enrollment high school season is in full swing – eighth graders are taking their exams, revisiting the choices they made in their December applications, and crossing their fingers for a postive result – acceptance into a Chicago Public School of their choice.

Chicago School Updates

As far as CONFIRMED news…

jones colleg prepJones College Prep will be increasing its enrollment, making use of the old building that was previously scheduled for demolition. Select this link for news article

Jones will be adding Pre-Law and Pre-Engineering programs to the school – the application for these recently added programs was January 15. CPS News Release Link


Acceptances/Rejections to Chicago Public Schools

February 18th – High school acceptances will be mailed during this week

March 18 – Elementary school acceptances will be mailed out

Chicago School School Rumors

One parent reported that she was banned from attending the Lincoln Park IB open house on Wednesday – she wasn’t “on the list” despite being in the attendance boundaries and having a child in the local IB Middle Years program.

Ogden’s IB program requires parents to attend an information session – a program for INVITED guests only – if you miss your night, you’re OUT! No second chances! No visit, no possible acceptance! (See this link for Ogden’s admission procedures)


For more information about Chicago High Schools,

Select this link for the New CPS SEARCHABLE GUIDE

CPS Searchable Guide

Other Links

Cut-off Scores for Selective Enrollment High Schools
(Cut-of scores for Selective Enrollment Schools )
CPS Calendar for 2013-2014
(CPS School Calendar )
Chicago Real Estate - Anne Rossley of Baird & Warner
For more information about NEIGHBORHOOD school options, please call me!
Anne Rossley, CRB, CRS, SRES, RSPS
Baird & Warner

Lincoln Park Homes For Sale- Chicago Vintage Real Estate

Looking for Lincoln Park Homes for sale? Love vintage houses? Curious about historic districts? Read on to see great Chicago real estate- homes for sale under $ 1.5 MM.

Lincoln Park

Lincoln Park is still the “go-to” neighborhood for many single family home buyers in Chicago.  From new construction to Victorian, rowhouses to McMansions, the eclectic properties stand side by side, creating a vibrant architectural quilt.

My favorites are the vintage homes – brownstones, graystones, quaint clapboard cottages and historic row houses, all in various states of rehab. The stories those walls could tell!

Historic Lincoln Park Homes for Sale

I’m writing this post in honor of them. In doing the research, I found a row house that I sold years ago (see below), an historic home in the Bissell District, a gorgeous home in the McCormick District, and other lovely DePaul, Old Town, and Lincoln Park historic homes.

chicago real estate- 474 deming lincoln park historic homes

474 W Deming


Tour Vintage Lincoln Park, DePaul, Old Town Homes

If you wish to take a virtual tour of vintage homes for sale and have sold (Under $ 1.5MM) in the last 3 months, select the link below:

Vintage Lincoln Park Homes for Sale and Sold – Virtual Tour Link

Lincoln Park DePaul Old Town Historic Homes for Sale and Sold

Search Chicago Real Estate With AnneSearch for vintage Lincoln Park Single Family Homes by selecting this link:

Lincoln Park Vintage Single Family Homes for Sale Under $ 1.5MM

Chicago Real Estate - Anne Rossley of Baird & Warner

To get more information about homes for sale on Chicago’s north side (Lincoln Park, Lakeview, Uptown, Edgewater, North Center, Lincoln Square…) please contact me by phone or email!

Select the addresses in the chart below to get information on homes currently for sale.

A/I1919Linc Pk Wst$999,000128843.113,773.93


chicago real estate Anne Rossley Baird & Warner

Anne Rossley, CRB, CRS, SRES, RSPS
Baird & Warner



2650 N Lakeview Luxury One Bedroom for Rent

2650 Lakeview portraitLuxury One Bedroom For Rent  $1850/month

Full amenity building on the park  with views for MILES!

Building amenities:

  • Indoor Pool
  • Fitness Center
  • Party Room
  • 3 Sun decks
  • Tennis
  • Mini-mart

Living Room

Apartment amenities:

  • Stainless new appliances
  • Hardwood floors
  • Upgraded bath
  • Floor to ceiling windows with unobstructed lake and city views
  • Wired for internet, cable
  • Included: heat, air, water, basic cable

Check out the slideshow for photos ….

Chicago Real Estate - Anne Rossley of Baird & Warner


Call me to schedule a showing!

Anne Rossley
Baird & Warner

2650 Lakeview – Chicago Condo Building of the Week

2650 Lakeview, built in 1972 and converted to condominiums in 1979, is one of the premier condominium buildings overlooking Lincoln Park and Lake Michigan.

2650 Lakeview Chicago Condos in Lincoln Park2650 Lakeview - Chicago condos for sale

It’s a full-amenity building, offering the following*:

1  indoor pool
2  mini-mart
3  fitness center
4  3 sundecks
5  tennis courts
6  attached garage
7  hospitality room with panoramic views of Lake Michigan

I recently sold a one bedroom facing north – the seller had been relocated but had previously purchased 3 units in the building over the years. Three bedrooms don’t become available very often – they are sometimes sold “in-house” as owners just post “For Sale” signs on the community bulletin board

* 2650 Lakeview has a no pet policy.

To get today’s list of condos for sale at 2650 N Lakeview, select this link:

 2650 N Lakeview – Condos for Sale Today

You can register online to get email alerts as new properties become available – just select the “login” link under the property listings!

Status UnitList SoldSFDateDaysRMSBRBAEXP
Actv2650Lakeview3108$582,500160011/21/1270422S (South), E (East)
Pend2650Lakeview2410$599,00015761/16/13356632S (South), E (East)
Clsd2650Lakeview3405$219,000$215,00076512/5/12162311N (North), E (East)
Clsd2650Lakeview2207$229,900$226,0008258/3/12148411N (North), E (East), City, Lake/Water, Park
Clsd2650Lakeview1306$220,000$210,00078510/17/1263311S (South), E (East), Lake/Water, Park
Clsd2650Lakeview3002$335,000$319,00012679/14/12203522S (South), E (East), W (West), City, Lake/Water, Park
Clsd2650Lakeview3707$239,900$230,0008259/5/1271411N (North), E (East), City, Lake/Water, Park
Clsd2650Lakeview1905$218,000$210,00076511/16/1223311N (North), E (East)
Clsd2650Lakeview2603$141,200$118,0004708/6/1245201N (North)
Clsd2650Lakeview3407$244,500$235,0007601/15/13102411N (North), E (East), City, Lake/Water, Park


2650 Lakeview Information

See what’s available within a 15 minute walk of 2650 Lakeview using StreetSmart Walk Score…

Click on the image to find out more…

2650 Lakeview Street Smart Walk Score

Condominium Website




Lakewood Balmoral Real Estate Update

Lakewood Balmoral Historic District has had some turnover in the last 6 months. Select this link to take a virtual tour and see the interiors of the homes that are listed or have sold recently:


Lakewood Balmoral Tour


New Listings in Lakewood Balmoral

5313 lakewood - single family home for sale in historic Lakewood Balmoral

5313 N Lakewood


While it’s new to the MLS in 2013, this home was listed for 190 days in 2012. The charming home is situated on a 37.5′ wide lot, and while the facade is charming and historic, the rear of the home has an addition which creates a kitchen-great room. Download floor plans by selecting this link.

Under Contract in Lakewood Balmoral

5248 N Wayne in Lakewood Balmoral Historic District

5248 N Wayne

Under Contract

 The eclectic vintage/contemporary 5248 N Wayne is under contract. The home has some interesting architectural details. A four bedroom 2full/2half bath home with updates is rare at this price!

Real Estate Activity – Last 6 Months

Status  ClosedListSoldMTRMSBRBATaxesSFLotPKN
ACTV1244Bryn Mawr
ACTV5457Wayne$1,249,0003161453.1$14,207.00500029 X 123Garage
CLSD5453Magnolia7/30/12$490,000$418,000367852$8,157.90225048X123Int Sp
CLSD5509Lakewood9/21/12$785,000$720,000141842.1$11,844.51255031 X 123Garage
CLSD5345Magnolia1/13/13$899,900$845,0004871054$12,731.69037.5 X 123Garage
CLSD5452Lakewood8/21/12$1,695,000$1,576,000141374.1$13,978.15037.5 X 125Garage



Call Anne Rossley of Baird & Warner

Interested in visiting homes for sale in Lakewood Balmoral? Give me a call!

If you want to get an email when new homes in Lakewood Balmoral become available, select this link and sign up for alerts:

Lakewood Balmoral Home Alerts

Below the listings you’ll see the “Login to save this search”

select that link, add your email, and you’re set!


Lakewood Balmoral Real Estate Update- home search alerts


chicago real estate Anne Rossley Baird & Warner
Anne Rossley, CRB, CRS, SRES, RSPS
Baird & Warner



Chicago Seniors – Emergency Planning for Winter and Flu

This month’s Chicago Seniors Newsletter addresses 2 issues:

  1. Emergency Planning, and
  2. Walk Scores

Emergency Planning

Seniors, like all of us, need to be prepared for disasters. In Chicago, we’re not as concerned with hurricanes, tornadoes (to a lesser extent!), but storms with their accompanying flash floods and power outages are of great concern. In addition, today is COLD (!) and we should all be ready for the problems that extremely cold weather creates.

Power Outage Checklist

Winter Storm Safety Checklist


In addition, the flu can be a disaster for seniors, children, asthmatics and immuno-challenged. The Red Cross has prepared checklists for the afflicted and those who care for them:

Preparing for the Flu

Caring for Those with the Flu – Checklist

Mobile Apps

The Red Cross has mobile apps (some for Android and Iphones, some only in Itunes format) for first aid, shelter, fire, earthquake, and hurricane…

Click on the photo below, or go to Itunes or GooglePlay stores to download….

Chicago Seniors - Anne Rossley Real Estate

Chicago Seniors

Chicago is on the cutting edge of technology, and this winter, I expect that the website will help neighbors – not only Chicago Seniors – but all Chicagoans have a safe and secure winter season.

Please view the video below to find out

  • How to track the Chicago snow plows,
  • Claim a sidewalk to shovel,
  • Find your car if it was towed for snow plows, and
  • Volunteer to shovel a sidewalk for a Chicagoan in need

There are several opportunities in Chicago for Seniors to get benefits and be prepared. Below is a map of Chicago Senior Centers.

Click on the map and then the location for more information:

Chicago Senior Service Centers


Mobile Apps:

anne rossley chicago 2Inches chicago snow app

Find what streets have overnight parking restrictions and are on the 2″ snow route



anne rossley real estate - Find your car if towed for snow

Was your car towed because of snow? Find it by using this app!



Next week:  We’ll discuss Walk Scores in Chicago and how these can be used to choose your next home!


Staging Your Home to Sell – Tips for Making Rooms Larger




Living Room Staged to Appear Larger
No matter what size your home is, being stuck inside all winter can make anyone claustrophobic. While this isn’t the best time of year to build room additions, there are simple steps you can take to make any space seem larger.Do use mirrors. The best and least expensive way to make smaller rooms appear bigger is to decorate walls with mirrors. Choose locations where the mirror will reflect the light back into the room to add warmth and depth.

Home Staging Tip #1:    Don’t neglect lighting.

Lighting is crucial when it comes to opening your space. Maximize any natural light available by getting rid of heavy draperies. Add more lamps at varying levels to give the room a glow, and install track lighting to make sure every corner is well lit.

Home Staging Tip #2:    Do choLiving Room Staged and Photographed to Appear Largeose a lighter color scheme.

Pale, cool colors will reflect the light and make the walls appear farther apart. Add visual impact to your space by separating the walls into blocks of color using gentle tones.

Home Staging Tip #3:    Don’t get hung up.

Your wall art should be hung at eye level or about 60 inches from the floor. Hanging items too high will make your ceiling seem lower.

Home Staging Tip #4:    Do space things out.

Instead of pushing your furniture against the walls, give pieces some breathing room by playing with interesting angles. You can also choose one large statement piece – like an armchair or coffee table – and fill in gaps around it.

See my previous post – BEFORE/AFTER/VACANT photos

Also – check out my Pinterest Boards – Staging your Home to Sell and Before & After …

Call Anne Rossley of Baird & Warner


For personalized help with staging your home, call or email me!

Anne Rossley
Baird & Warner




Chicago Real Estate Free Book Give-a-way!


Chicago Real Estate Giveaway

 –   Ilyce Glink’s book   –

Buy, Close, Move in!


buy close move in book cover

How to Navigate the New World of Real Estate-

Safely and Profitably –

and End Up with the Home of Your Dreams

This is a terrific book for both first time buyers and time-tested real estate investors.  It’s not limited to Chicago Real Estate – the information on buying and selling real estate is applicable to everyone who’s considering a real estate purchase.

The fantastic book includes chapters on

  • The New World of Mortgage Finance
  • What Can you Afford to Buy?
  • Fixing Your Credit History and Credit Score Forever
  • Down Payment and Reserve Money – Where to Find it
  • Identifying Amazing Opportunities
  • Savvy Real Estate Investing

There are 3 ways you can enter –

  • LIKE the Anne Rossley Real Estate Facebook page,
  • Share this post with your friends on Facebook, and/or
  • Sign up for my Monthly Email Newsletter

Sign in to Rafflecopter using the links below or visit the Anne Rossley Real Estate Facebook Page and Select “Giveaway”

Winners will need to either pick up the book or provide a mailing address for the book to sent to you by January 31, 2013.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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