The winter months aren’t generally rife with real estate news, especially here in Chicago. But that makes the season especially opportune for buyers, and this is something I tell my luxury clients year after year. The time to consider pulling the trigger on a new home purchase is late November, December and January, when buyers are scarce and sellers must be more realistic about pricing their homes.
In my 25-plus years working in Chicago real estate, I’ve seen the winter months produce some amazing deals for luxury buyers. Less buyers are out in the cold weather, and anyone relocating to Chicago at this time are usually serious buyers—the result is sellers who are willing to strike a deal to get their homes sold.
That’s not to say it’s too late to negotiate a great winter price on luxury real estate in Chicago. Buyers in the right position to make a move can still take advantage of the seasonal slowdown if they move quickly before spring heads our way. One huge advantage is to pay cash—this gives the buyer a stronger hand to play at the negotiating table, as deals are far more foolproof and ensure to the seller that things will go quickly and smoothly.
Luxury Condo and Co-Op Sales in Chicago Last Month
Winter negotiations are apparent in January’s condo and co-op sales. Take a look at the sales recap below, and you’ll notice there are a few clear differences between the original listing price and the final sales price.
Starting with the most expensive, here are the top 5 luxury condo sales during January, in descending order:
1500 N Lake Shore Dr, Unit 11A
Original list price: $3.978 million
Sold price: $3.1 million
A renovated 3-bedroom in a premier Gold Coast co-op building, this unit features smashing views of the lake and city and a fabulous floor plan that allows for large, formal rooms. A blend of vintage details—such as 18th century carved oak walls in the living room—meld will sleek, modern touches throughout. This co-op building required a cash buyer for this unit, but you can see that the buyer got an incredible deal on the price.
1040 N Lake Shore Dr, Unit 24D
Original list price: $2.6 million
Sold price: $2.35 million
This renovated 3,163 square foot 3 bedroom is in pristine condition, located in a north-facing corner at the Carlyle. Sophisticated details are found from one room to the next: An exquisite paneled library with built-ins and wet bar; a spacious eat-in kitchen with Neff cabinetry, granite countertops, new limestone floors and high-end appliances; a gracious master suite with his-and-her baths and walk-in closets. Additional features include surround sound in public rooms, professionally organized closets, hardwood flooring and new windows. Residents in this building enjoy a 24-hour doorman, on-site property management, exercise room, indoor pool, party room, sun deck and storage.
1430 N Lake Shore Dr, Unit 10
Original list price: $3.2 million
Sold price: $2.175 million
This renovated Gold Coast co-op includes 4+ bedrooms with ensuite baths, gracious room sizes, a handsome chef’s kitchen and butler’s pantry, a formal dining room and sweeping lake views.
1035 N Dearborn St, Unit 16
Original list price: $2.25 million
Sold price: $2.03 million
A full-floor residence on the 16th floor of Maple Tower, this 3,799 unit features 3 bedrooms, 3.1 baths, a private elevator and 2 included parking spaces. A southwest exposure brings in great light and views from the heart of the Gold Coast.