Best Christmas Decorations in Chicagoland – New Book Give-away

They’re not in print any more, but you can win a copy of the highly acclaimed book,

Best Christmas Decorations in Chicagoland

by Mary Edsey!

This is the best raffle EVER  —

All you need to do is “like” my Facebook Page!

On Monday, December 10,

I will gather the names of everyone who has “liked” my Facebook page from Nov 30 – Dec 9 at 10 pm…

I will pull one name and that person will win a NEW (out of print) photo book

showing the best Chicagoland Christmas Decorations.


This is a lovely book bring to your next holiday party as a hostess gift


Keep as a great idea-book!


Here’s the link to my Facebook Page —

Anne Rossley Real Estate on Facebook

Good luck!

Sell Your Chicago Home with a Real Estate Video

How to Sell Chicago Real Estate

In addition to the typical marketing avenues (MLS, open houses, etc),

I  endeavor to be always “techno-forward” in finding ways to get my listings in front of potential buyers:

–  Social Media – Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin
–  Web and this blog
–  Web Feeds (Trulia, Zillow, Homefinder…)
–  Web advertising sites – Craigslist, Postlets, etc
–  Mailings – postcards to clients, neighbors, renters and other potential buyers
–  Email Newsletter to clients
–  Advertising – Chicago Tribune, Crain’s, Chicago Magazine, WSJ, local neighborhood papers…
–  and more…

Another avenue of Chicago Real Estate Marketing that is gaining popularity:

Real Estate Videos


I’ve done YouTube videos using professional photography (see 5359 N Magnolia), and

Dennis Rodkin featured 3141 N Clifton on his DealEstate videos (see below), but I haven’t moved into making my own professional videos yet.

Perhaps I’m afraid I’ll end up with videos like the three I’ve included here…

What do you think?

Do these make you want to buy?

Would you want your home on YouTube?

Funny videos may get the real estate agent noticed, but I don’t believe they make you want to buy THAT PARTICULAR property.

I’ll continue creating professional home tours, and from time to time, I hope Dennis Rodkin will do more videos of my properties.

I’ll sell your property by employing all methods to sell, including videos.  Clients receive guidance to

  • stage their home for sale, then we’ll get
  • professional photographs that show your home in the best light. These photos, along with
  • neighborhood maps, walk scores, floor plans, and links to info about lifestyle/resources will showcase your home in the best possible light. This video home tour will be
  • plastered everywhere on the internet that buyers search for Chicago Real Estate for sale.


The goal is to get buyers to want to VISIT the house, NOT forward it to friends as a joke.

And one more — you don’t need to watch more than 30 seconds of this one…

Here’s the Dennis Rodkin video of Clifton — it’s a professional work, and one I’m proud to share.  Thanks, Dennis!!

Chicago’s Newest Luxury High-Rises – Both Pressing for Sales

Two luxury high rise buildings are in the news…

Ritz Carlton Residences

The Ritz Carlton Residences, 644 N Michigan Ave, are not able to deliver their units, due to a dispute with the Terra Foundation. Since the Foundation refuses to close on the Prism build-out of their space, the homeowners who have planned to move in to the RC Residences are unable to move into their condos. As a result, lawsuits are being filed by homeowners, asking for their earnest money back.

The residences use the 118 E Erie address, and currently 7 are listed in the MLS, ranging in price from $ 1.5MM to 4.8MM. The listings represent 7 different tiers in the building, so presumably there are more residences available than just these 7.



To see listings currently available through the MLS at the Ritz Carlton, select this link.

Read more about the building’s trouble in Crain’s by selecting this link.

2550 N Lakeview

Originally marketed as 2520 Lincoln Park (select this link to see the website), this Lucian LaGrange building held an open house for Baird & Warner agents last week. Tom and I toured the models and common areas – it was the first time I had been in the building since the sales office left the John Hancock building.

The sales office for 2550 Lincoln Park is in the south tower, and the views were every bit as sensational as I expected. The common areas are lovely, and the private park is unique for the city’s high rises, even luxury buildings.The building staff was not just cordial – they were friendly and welcoming.

Here are my random thoughts from the visit:

  • So many public areas – media room, billiards room, game room, reception room… perhaps one doesn’t need so large a home when all these other spaces are available?
  • I got the impression that the building was designed for families as well as your typical high end single/couple — I kept thinking how much my teenagers would love the billiards room, game room, and theater. If only we could all afford $2MM condos AND private school!
  • There are lots of public rooms, but there’s a void in the grocery/restaurant options. Except for North Pond, there aren’t a lot of restaurants, and I don’t consider the nearby grocery stores to be adequate for the discriminating shopper. If I’d been the developer, I might have taken 600 square feet on the ground level for a gourmet take-out or commissary.
  • It was a total letdown to leave the sales office, a 2600+SF unit with south/city views, and then travel to the 9th floor north tower for the typical 3 bedroom model. It was significantly smaller, with  many square feet were lost to hallways and odd angles.
  • I was told that the building is about 50% sold. The kitchens have been finished, so buyers don’t get the typical new construction perks of choosing their own finishes. That’s too bad – most high-end buyers want their own choices. (The penthouse units are unfinished, however.)

Listings in the building begin at $ 1,048,000, and the highest price available through the MLS is price at $ 6,092,000. Unlike the Ritz, closings have taken place at 2550, and the highest reported sales price is $3,587,407.

To see listings and get more information about condos for sale at 2550 N Lakview, select this link.

Take a video tour of 2550 Lincoln Park by watching this video from Alby Gallun of Crain’s Chicago Business.


Other newer luxury condo buildings and projects in Chicago:

Search Chicago Luxury Condos

Want to view luxury condos for sale online?

   Select this link to get a current list of luxury condominiums for sale in Chicago.


Luxury Condo Sales in Chicago over the last year

Are you interested in knowing just how much people are paying for condos in Chicago? Only 2 condos in Chicago have sold for over $ 1000 per square foot over the last year -65 E Goethe and 11 Walton.

See the chart below for condos that sold for over $ 2,750,000 this year.

HSNSTR#List PriceSales PriceSFPrice/SFDate ClosedRMSBRFull BA1/2BA
840Lake Shore1701$4,295,000$3,695,0004300$859.3012/15/119431
840LAKE SHORE1601$3,995,000$3,600,0004350$827.599/22/127441
445North Water2701$3,350,000$3,075,0005200$591.357/2/129331
199Lake Shore6E$2,800,000$2,750,0004600$597.837/17/128332




Chicago Real Estate – Single Family Homes for Sale Under $700,000

For those of you who think the only homes for sale in Chicago are the Lincoln Park mini-mansions for $2MM, think again.

There are some fantastic Chicago real estate for sale that’s under $ $700,000. Take a tour of them by selecting this link. 

Are you interested in particular Chicago neighborhoods – Lincoln Square, Lakeview, Edgewater, North Center… ? Let me present a personalized virtual tour for you – just email the parameters to

We can also set up new listing alerts so you’ll be one of the first to know what a new listing is available!

 2334 W Farragut
Lincoln Square
4092 N Kenmore
2822 N Racine

Don’t be the last to learn about new homes for sale  — for everything in Chicago Real Estate, contact Anne Rossley at Baird  Warner.

Chicago and North Shore Luxury (Castles) for Sale

“A man’s home is his castle!”

Having just enjoyed a Luxury Portfolio tour of 2 castles, I thought it might be fun to offer my clients a virtual tour of Chicago “Castles”.

Select this link to tour the highest priced homes in Chicago and beyond, including homes along the north shore – Wilmette to Lake Forest. These properties are priced between $ 6MM and $12MM, and they are all currently available for sale through the Multiple Listing Service.

Included in the Tour…

503 W Wrightwood

191 Sheridan Road – Winnetka

111 Ontwentsia, Lake Forest

Regardless of the price point, let Anne Rossley help you find your next castle!

Contact Anne by phone (773-620-5333)  or email

Also —  select the icon below to download this free home search app – find info on homes via GPS!

Directions for Downloading to your phone (pdf)

Homeowners in North Chicago Township Need to File Property Tax Appeals Now

Triennial property tax re-assessment notices were mailed Sept 14 to owners in the North Chicago Township.

This township is located from the Chicago River to Fullerton ave (2400N) and west to the Chicago River North Branch. (Lakeview and Jefferson townships have already gone through their reassessment and appeal periods.)

After the recent teachers’ strike, it’s more and more likely that Chicago taxes will be going up – the question we each need to ask ourselves is, ” How do I limit my risk for higher expenses?”  One thing homeowners can do right away is file a property tax appeal!

The sales prices for the properties in North Chicago declined by 5+%, but homeowners should still take advantage of the opportunity to file an appeal. Your assessed value may go down, but it may not have declined by 5.3%. Or, even if it went down by 6%, you might still be assessed for more than you should – NOW IS THE TIME TO INVESTIGATE!

2011 Median Sale Price $898,500
2010 Median Sale Price $937,000
2009 Median Sale Price $965,000
Median Current A.V. $89,817
Median Prior A.V. $96,524
Median % Change – 5.275%
Median A.V. Change – $4,147


Appeals can be handled one of two ways:

  • Do it yourself! Appeals can be filed online by selecting this link. If your property is incorrectly categorized, or if your assessment is higher than your neighbors’ comparably priced home, then it should be a fairly simple process.*
  • Hire an attorney. Many attorneys work on a contingency basis – they will take a portion of your first year’s savings as remuneration. This means you can appeal without having to pay someone “out of pocket” to do the work on your behalf.

If you would more information about you particular case, contact me – send your requests via email to

It’s a good time, too, to  make sure you are receiving deductions for all possible exemptions – homeowners, seniors ….  select this link for all exemption opportunities.

Appeals are due by October 15, with documentation due by 10/25.

* I filed my appeal online this year – it took 15 minutes and I was successful in getting the assessment value revised.
How Will Chicago Pay for Strike Deal? (NBC)
Teacher Deal Could lead to Property Tax Hikes… (Chicago Sun-Times)
Emanuel mum on how to Pay for Teachers’ Contract (Chicago Tribune)
We May all Have to Pay for Teachers Pact (Southtown Star)

Chicago Real Estate – Two Flat Tour

Two flats are a fantastic investment, and there are still lots of opportunities for Chicago home buyers to take advantage of the combination of great pricing and low interest rates.

Select this link to tour some that are currently listed for sale –

You’ll see 2-flats from Ukrainian Village to Bucktown, Wicker Park,  and Logan Square. These properties are priced from $250,000 to $750,000, and they are just a few of the many great offerings available in Chicago real estate.

923 S Bell



1645 Mozart



736 Oakley

To see these, or any other investment properties for sale in Chicago,
contact Anne Rossley at Baird & Warner – 773-620-5333

Books Books Books!

I’m never sure how to describe my interests in Twitter, Facebook, and other social media profiles…

… Dog lover, sports enthusiast, history buff …  ?

…  Labradoodle nut, Cubs and Bears Forever(!), genealogist …?

I rarely, however, include “Reading” as an interest.

I LOVE reading, and I’ve been a member of Goodreads for a long time. Sadly, however, I don’t have much time to embrace this passion. This summer, I tried a new tactic —  work out and listen to an audiobook…  drive and listen to a motivational or training CD … but it’s just not the same as holding the book and seeing the images dance off the pages.

The kids are madly trying to finish their summer reading assignments before school starts next week, and I confess that I’m envious.

As I scanned the real estate blogs tonight, I  came across a fantastic idea… a neighborhood lending library. The concept is that someone builds a cute little house (bigger than a birdhouse but smaller than a doghouse) for their front yard. Neighbors  stop by and take a book, replacing it with another for the next passer-by. It’s a friendly way to share a “good read” and keep solid, sturdy books in circulation.

The movement has taken off, and you can see examples of libraries on their website.

Am I too much of a romantic to believe that this could work in my Chicago neighborhood?

Who has a Free Little Library near their home?

Who has a plan for building one?

…perhaps a plan for an historic house with a Cubs flag flying and a Labradoodle in the front yard?!



Clean Home – Happy Home

My fantasy of a clean, de-cluttered home, with everything in its place, is just that — a dream.

I wasn’t surprised today, when I found HouseLogic’s article about The Link between Clutter and Depression. I frequently succumb to frustration about my kids’ socks on the floor, burned-out light bulbs, paintings that need hanging, and sticky countertops. Next week, when my oldest goes to college, I’ll be sad, but I’ll cheer myself up with the realization that 1/3 of my tornadoes will be scattering debris in Iowa and not Lakewood Balmoral.

The HouseLogic article is based on a UCLA study, and the book that reveals how middle-class Americans use things in their homes – Life at Home in the 21st Century.  Not only do we Americans buy 40% of the world’s toys but we are often paralyzed about throwing away the nick-knacks that we accumulate over the years. Who hasn’t seen an episode of Hoarders?!

I’m looking forward to reading the book, having previously read  At Home: A Short History of Private Life , by Bill Bryson,. Bryson’s book describes the history of the “things” in our home. Pepper seems to have been very popular, accounting for 70% of the spice trade and frequently sprinkled on desserts. As for bathing, only recently have we fallen in love with daily bathing . Benjamin Franklin took “air baths” — basking naked in front of an open window at his London home.  And, by the way, Thomas Crapper DIDN’T invent the toilet.

Sellers often become emotional about de-cluttering their homes as they prepare to sell. Just about all sellers,  however, find that once they organize and get their property ready for sale, they fall in love with their home all over again.

Maybe we should all pretend we’re getting ready to sell — sorting, sifting, getting rid of the “un-necessaries”–  it will give us all a new lease on life!




New Home at Baird & Warner

Thanks for being patient –

I’m making the move to Baird & Warner’s Gold Coast office –

In the long run, this will be a great move for my clients and for me, but it’s taking a bit of time to get the details completed.

I hope to be 100% by Aug 3.


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