Chicago condo inspection tips from the pros

Real Estate Agent with Rubloff Residential Properties

Chicago has a ton of new conversion and new construction condo developments.  And they all ain't made alike.

  I have several inspections this week of new and re-sale condos that my clients have purchased. One of the main reasons they decided on the homes is the good, solid feel the condos gave them. Its kind of an intangible, "This place just feels good". But that's no accident. You usually get that feeling from condos that were well constructed and have great layouts in general. When you look at 10 places and one just seems better from the moment you step in... it usually is better!

Yo Chicago contributer Tom Corbett offers up some things to look for when shopping condos. These indicators may help you decide one development or re-sale condo over another when you've narrowed things down.

I usually get a good feeling one way or another about a development pretty quickly. We like to say, "Don't let the flash of new appliances and counter tops fool you, determine if this place is solid and lays out well". We as in some fellow agents an me. Read Tom's article linked above for a list of indicators the pros look for.

My pet peave has been bad wood around doors and trim... it's the first thing I look for and advise my clients we may have an issue. Above is one of our developments in Lakeview... no crappy material here!!

Comments (4)

1SG (Ret.) David Kucic
Hawaii Military Realty, Inc. - Ewa Beach, HI
President and Owner
Eric-When you say "conversion", are you speaking of a building that used to be an apartment and/or a hotel and has now been converted into condominiums?  If so, are you having any problems getting lenders to finance them?
May 10, 2007 03:21 AM
Eric Rojas

Hey David and Tonya,

 I am referencing "gut rehab" conversions of existing apartment buildings.  Chicago has a great number of them (through the years).  I don't see large or small developers having any issues getting the projects going.  Even today.  You still have top dollar areas such as Lakeview, Lincoln Park and Lincoln Square converting former rental buildings and selling very well. 

The problem is, certain developers buy in the best spot and pay top dollar to do it.  The location is so good, they can cheap on the finishes (especially doors, window casings and trim).  They use the cheapest stuff and still sell them easily.  In that game, it's totally location, location, location.


I always try to steer my clients to a better constructed re-sale... but everyone loves new.



May 10, 2007 06:34 AM
1SG (Ret.) David Kucic
Hawaii Military Realty, Inc. - Ewa Beach, HI
President and Owner

Eric-Thanks.  I know what you mean about everybody loving new.  The problem I have here in Hawaii is there is not a large selection of new so some of my clients beleive that the single family built in 1974 should be just like new and they end up wanting the seller to fix and replace virtually everything.  I always warn them about this happening when we go out looking for homes but some of them just dont get it.  I worked at 233 N. Michigan Ave after having grown up in Calumet City.  Then I joined the Army and never went back.  Id like to return one day to see the White Sox play.  Aloha!

May 10, 2007 07:32 AM
Gary White~Grand Rapids Home Selling Pro Call: 616-821-9375
Flexit Realty "Flexible Home Selling Solutions" - Grand Rapids, MI
Real Estate Services You can Trust!
The info and layouts sound great.  I grew up in Lincoln park area. 
May 14, 2007 01:59 PM