The Future May Soon Be Here with Artificial Intelligence for Chicago Luxury Homes

We’ve all had these days: Returning home after too many hours in the office or on the road, hungry for dinner but lacking the energy to actually cook something. If only there were a machine that could do it for you…

Those days could soon be a thing of the past, thanks to the June oven. Equipped with a camera and wi-fi, this artificially intelligent oven can not only cook that night’s dinner to your liking, but identify what it is you want to cook to begin with, set itself accordingly and alert your device when done. This machine-learning technology could very well be the next big thing to bring ultra-luxury to Chicago real estate.

I like to keep abreast of the most exciting luxury home trends, and the possibility of artificial intelligence in the high-end home is certainly one. From apps to dimmers to auto-everything, there is no shortage of gadgets and features available in the luxury home. And once the AI technology is perfected, I have no doubt that this could be a staple of luxury kitchens, just like the wine cellar, movie theater, and basketball court.

The June oven may at first sound like an unnecessary extravagance, but in an article by the Wall St. Journal, the technology was mostly praised for its restaurant-quality meals, from salmon to roasted vegetables to chocolate chip cookies. And the convenience can’t be denied—fitted with a scale for weighing servings, a camera that streams to your device, even heat distribution, a touch screen, a probe to test temperature and more, this oven practically lets you abandon the stand-by of cooking dinner all together.

These are the types of “wow factors” that go a long way in luxury real estate. Here are a few other ways artificial intelligence is changing the way we live in our homes.

  • Nvidia has taken virtual assistance to the next level. At this year’s Consumer Electronics Show, the company introduced its Spot mics: tiny, subtle mics with artificial intelligence that are wired into the walls of a home and could be the next thing in creating a truly integrated smart home.
  • Moen has introduced smart showers in its U Shower System, which allows you to control the heat of your shower via your wifi device.
  • LG brought “deep learning technology” to kitchen appliances at this year’s CES, including a memory-enabled robot vacuum, smart and predictive HVAC systems and washing machines that adjust based on the types of clothing being washed.

Whether you’re in the market for Chicago real estate or not, I think its important (for myself and for readers!) to stay on top of the cutting-edge products that are becoming available in today’s homes. Tomorrow’s luxuries are becoming more and more functional, and will play a big role in what is considered high-end real estate in the years ahead.

For more on what’s trending in Chicago luxury real estate today, contact me at (312) 498-5080 or email me at ssalnick@dreamtown.com.

Unique Features and Design Trends to Differentiate Your Luxury Chicago Home

Home design “trends” can come and go with a swift season. What was en vogue one year can quickly change, so it’s important for homeowners to evaluate upgrades and changes they want to make to their homes and consider what it could mean for their resale value down the road.

Conversely, it’s also important to think about what characteristics and features will set your home apart when you’re ready to sell. In today’s luxury real estate market, there are a handful of go-to features buyers are always looking for—square footage, location, outdoor space, etc. But it is the unique, luxury aspects of a home that can wow a buyer from the get-go and make sure your home sells quickly.

Keeping that in mind, it can be tricky to navigate which home improvements are worth the investment, which can range from small to big (and so can the return on investment) I’ve recently read about three interesting home features that I think are worth considering in order to make a home stand apart from the rest.

kohler faucet

Photo via Kohler

Professional grade kitchen updates: The sink faucet may seem like just a functional piece of the kitchen, but for luxury buyers, this is one of those details that goes a long way. I find that many of my clients looking to purchase luxury real estate in Chicago are usually into cooking, and the kitchen design and features are extremely important in what they’re looking for. One common way to upgrade the kitchen is to use professional-grade appliances or fixtures that add to the luxury and wow factor of a home, as mentioned in this Wall St. Journal article.

For the home chef, a commercial sink faucet is one of those additions that could be a major plus when it comes time to sell your home and you want to differentiate it from other high-end properties on the market. Industrial fixtures are typically larger, with taller spouts, detachable sprayers and a bevy of other ultra-functional features. Kohler, for example, sells a professional-style faucet with a squeezable handle that will run you around $2,000.

mailbox

Add a warm welcome: Seemingly just a functional piece of the home, the mailbox can easily become a showpiece for a luxury home, and was also recently highlighted in this article from the Wall St. Journal. The mailbox is one detail that each and every guest sees before they enter your home, so it’s no surprise that it might get a little extra attention, especially in neighborhoods like Lincoln Park where homes run up into the $3 million to $5 million range.

Since I tend to be a bit of a perfectionist, where every detail counts, I thought this was a great design element to explore and take a look at the various custom options that are available. A high-end mailbox helps provide a luxury house with the pizzazz it deserves.

When it comes to upscale mailboxes, you can find everything from clean and modern styles to bold and bright to more classic shapes. Finding one that pairs well with the style of your home is your best bet, as this is yet another detail that people will notice (before they’ve even stepped inside!)

aquarium architecture

Interactive art pieces: This is truly one ultimate way to add major wow factor to your home: A freshwater fish tank. The Wall St. Journal recently highlighted the home aquarium as an “interactive piece of art” in luxury homes. A custom aquarium can be designed with the homeowner’s imagination. Companies specializing in custom fish tanks can create just about anything—an underwater garden that spans an entire wall, an aquarium in the shape of a favorite object or even a technology-driven tank that can be maintained via an app on your phone.

While visually, an “aquascape” is a powerful design element in a home, there could be other benefits as well—researchers have found that aquariums can lower blood pressure. And a custom tank can run as little as $10,000, which may not sound like a small cost, but compared to the potential return on investment when it’s time to sell your home, it may definitely be something to consider.

If selling your Chicago home is anywhere on your radar for the next several years, I’d certainly consider evaluating what improvements might be made that could pay off when that time comes. For luxury buyers, it’s all about the details, so while some changes might seem minor, they can speak volumes to the buyer who is looking for that certain something in a new home.

For more information on home design trends or to take a look at what’s on the market now, contact me at (312) 498-5080 or email me at ssalnick@dreamtown.com.

Consider New Paint Colors to Sell Chicago Luxury Real Estate Faster

Painting your Chicago home before selling

Spring is the prime time for kicking off long awaited home projects. Whether it’s a deep cleaning or a home remodel, a spring refresh is perfect for giving a boost to the resale value in your home if you’re planning to sell in the months ahead. But if you’re fixing things up, there are important considerations to make if your thinking about selling.

Trends in home design can have a huge effect on real estate. A certain feature or element could be just the thing buyers are looking for one year and in the next, that same feature could deter potential buyers. Even an update as minimal as a fresh coat of paint can determine your home’s success on the market.

But paint can go a long way to make a luxury home pristine to potential buyers and sell quicker. Considering the Chicago real estate market is very competitive right now, even seemingly small updates could be the key to a successful sale.

The Effect of Paint on Resale Value of Chicago Real Estate

Each season there’s a new “it” color or design scheme that homeowners are itching to incorporate into their home. It’s important to know that all popular hues don’t necessarily translate into every living space. Yellows and greens—popular colors that re-emerge in the spring months—could look fabulous in a room with plenty of spring sunshine, but covering all four walls (or more!) in an on-trend hue could be too much for a space.

Here are a few tips for picking the right paint colors, as highlighted in a recent Wall St. Journal article:

Consider neighboring rooms. Colors should complement, not contrast, each other from one room to the other. Imagine you were taking a birds-eye look at all of the rooms in your home—do all of the colors go together? The shades of paint don’t all need to be the same, but should flow and harmonize from wall to wall.

Work with what’s there. Unless you’re redecorating all together, choose paint colors that go with the furnishings already in your home. Think about the colors in a rug, or a statement furniture piece or a cherished piece of art work and pick shades that will blend right in.

Do a test run. You want to get a sense of what it will be like to live with a color before committing to it. Paint a patch of wall so that you can evaluate the color at all points in the day—in natural light, at dusk, in room lighting, etc. If painting part of the wall isn’t possible, a big board or canvas painting in the proposed color will do the trick. The key is to not rely on paint chips along to settle on the color of the whole room.

If you’re looking to increase resale value or speed up the sale process, fresh paint is a great first step I recommend to my clients. I also urge them to stick to a neutral palette rather than bold or varied shades that might make it difficult for buyers to envision themselves living in.

For more tips on readying your home for a spring or summer sale, contact me at (312) 498-5080 or email me at ssalnick@dreamtown.com.

 

 

State-of-the-Art Ovens Make for a Showstopping Kitchen in your Chicago Luxury Home

In real estate, the term luxury can be a bit relative. For one person, a certain feature or amenity could be run of the mill, while for another it could be something very impressive, depending on your background or where you’re from. But some things—think about a Bentley or a Rolls Royce-—are showstoppers no matter what, and will make most people stop and say, “Wow!”

That level of luxury has made its way into Chicago real estate, particularly in the kitchen. Between the foodie movement and kitchens becoming the “hub” of the home, this room is getting more attention than ever. To meet that demand, the “Rolls Royces of kitchen appliances” are here, matching today’s technology-embedded lifestyles with kitchen ovens that go far beyond simply “high end.” These products really up the wow factor in a kitchen, which is a space that homebuyers are evaluating carefully when considering a home purchase.

Even having sold a $5 million home, I have to look twice at these kitchen ovens and am amazed at the product features that come with it. The design is stunning–both aesthetically and functionally–and is sure to wow future buyers when you get ready to resell your home.

The Wall Street Journal recently covered 6 hot (pun intended) ovens that are hitting the market and upping the level of luxury in the kitchen. From griddles to precise food temperature, to apps, these stoves have it all. Here are a few favorites among these superstar kitchen appliances:

Viking Professional 7 Series Range: This luxury range features a wireless temperature-monitoring system, a temperature probe and a device that plugs into the range to show the food temperature as it is cooking. The temperature can also be monitored through a smartphone app from up to 200 feet away. Price: $14,699

Molteni Ranges: Talk about a Rolls Royce of the kitchen. This made-to-order French range can be made in any size, shape or configuration and can include a range of options: a pasta cooker, fryer, shelves, sinks, electrical sockets and heated or refrigerated cabinets. Residential customers have even spent as much as $140,000 to add one of these to their homes. Price: Starting at $50,000

Five-Oven AGA Total Control: This range does double duty for cooking and for warming the kitchen. A smartphone app lets users send remote commands to the appliance, which features separate ovens for roasting, baking, simmering, slow-cooking and warming. Price: $20,299

60-Inch Dual Fuel Range by Wolf: Wolf has long been a favorite among homebuyers and builders in luxury Chicago real estate (often recognized for their signature red knobs). The 60-inch Dual Fuel Range is a dual convection oven that includes two 30-inch electric ovens and 10 cooking modes, ranging from pizza stones to a dehydrator. Price: $16,865

Grand Palais 180 by La Cornue: Another French company, La Cournue is known for the vaulted shape of its oven, along with its sleek design and seemingly endless customization options. Buyers can choose from 30 colors and 12 different trims. Price: Starts at $46,000

Thermador: The Thermador Pro Grand Steam oven combines multiple cooking elements into one: stovetop burners, a griddle, a grill, a conventional oven, a warming drawer and a steam oven all live within the one appliance. Later this year, the company is expected to introduce an indoor grill with lava rocks that infuse meat with more flavor.

Focus on Kitchens in Chicago Real Estate
Whether its a fancy oven to meet every cooking need or a built-in coffee shop in your own kitchen, kitchens are certainly having their proverbial day in the sun when it comes to home design. With the attention being paid to this space by buyers and sellers alike, it’s important to keep on on kitchen trends to have a handle on what defines “luxury” in the Chicago real estate market. A stand-out kitchen could easily be what differentiates one home on the market from the next.

It’s obvious that building a “wow” kitchen doesn’t come cheap. But all things considered, putting in new features, upgrading appliances or adding that something extra are sure ways to ensure you obtain premium dollar when you’re ready to sell.