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New Luxury Homes Gift-Wrapped For Holidays As Loan Rates Rise

Shopping for a brand new upscale home over the holidays on Chicago’s North Side may be one of the best buying seasons in years because of rock-bottom mortgage rates and a wide selection of immediate-occupancy luxury housing.

Chicago luxury home buyers who are willing to close a deal quickly and move in after the Super Bowl will find a diverse selection of architectural style in North Side neighborhoods—from Old Town, Lincoln Park and Bucktown, to Graceland West, West Edgewater and Sauganash on the Northwest Side, real estate experts say.

However, developers are advising would-be home buyers to shop quickly, because in December mortgage rates could rise substantially for the first time in years.

“Today, few home buyers remember that home-loan rates were hovering at 6.75 percent in mid-2006,” warned developer Paul Bertsche of C.A. Development.

On November 12th the Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Market Survey reported that average 30-year fixed mortgage rates rose to 3.98 percent from 3.87 percent a week earlier. Now, economists are forecasting a possible December rate increase by the Federal Reserve Board. A year ago, the benchmark 30-year fixed loan averaged 4.01 percent.

In October, 271,000 jobs were added to the economy and wages grew 0.4 percent, exceeding many expectations, noted Sean Becketti, chief economist of Freddie Mac.

“The positive employment reports pushed Treasury yields to about 2.3 percent as investors responded by placing a higher likelihood on a December rate hike,” Becketti said.

“Mortgage rates followed with the 30-year average jumping 11 basis points to 3.98 percent, the highest level since July.”

So, if you are shopping for a new home and hope to lock in a deal before interest rates climb, where do you go?

C.A. Development currently is offering a nice selection of immediate-occupancy single-family homes in three neighborhoods—Bucktown, West Edgewater and Sauganash.

“We have been responsive to the new-construction demands of discerning city home buyers who are seeking innovative architectural design, high-end finishes, gourmet kitchens, luxury master-bedroom suites and energy-efficient heating and cooling systems,” said Bertsche, one of the most active builders of new single-family homes in Chicago. Visit:

As a result, C.A. Development has sold several new $1-million-plus homes in 2015, and several more luxury homes are available for immediate occupancy or delivery within 60 to 90 days. Ranked by listing price, here are a few of the homes available through Barbara O’Connor of DreamTown Realty, call 773-491-5631:

• Bucktown. A Modern-style 4-bedroom, 3.5-bath home at 2346 W. Moffat St. has 3,350 square feet of living area. The residence has hardwood floors throughout first and second levels, a lavish master-bedroom suite, a custom kitchen, and 10-foot-high coffered ceilings throughout first floor. The home features a 2-car garage with full roof deck. Price: $900,000.

• West Edgewater. A 5-bedroom, 3.5-bath traditional “Bay-style” home at 1667 W. Edgewater St. has 3,650 square feet of living area. The residence, built on a 30-foot wide lot, features a 3-car garage. The home showcases a large master-bedroom suite and three other bedrooms and a laundry center on the second floor. The residence has a chef’s kitchen equipped with Bosch and Thermador appliances and 5-by-8-foot island with seating. The family room features a fireplace and tiled, heated sunroom.

The lower level has radiant heating, a large recreation room with wet bar, fifth bedroom, a full bath, a second laundry and dual-zoned HVAC systems. The home, for move-in within 60 to 90 days, is priced at $1,050,000.

• West Edgewater. This 4-bedroom, 3.5-bath home at 1673 W. Edgewater St. is designed in “Urban Gable-style” on a 30-foot-wide lot. The residence has 3,650 square feet of living area and a 3-car garage. Features include: floor-to-ceiling windows, a huge master-bedroom suite with private deck, and master bath with deck-mounted tub and separate shower with seat. The chef’s kitchen is equipped with Bosch and Thermador appliances and massive 5-by-8-foot island with seating.

The lower level recreation room has a wet bar, radiant heating, a second laundry and dual-zoned HVAC systems. Priced at $1,086,000, the home is ready for move-in within 60 to 90 days.

• Sauganash. This one-of-a-kind Tudor mansion at 6032 N. Hiawatha is a total renovation and rebuild of a historic home originally erected in 1927 as a model home for the community of Sauganash. The 5-bedroom to 6-bedroom, 4.5-bath residence displays 6,500 square feet of living area.

Features include an original 2-story beam ceiling, a library, chef’s kitchen with professional appliances, a wine cellar, a sports court, a media/billiards room, a sauna, two wet bars, radiant heat, plus dual-zoned HVAC system. The home sits on a 13,500-square-foot lot. Ready for immediate occupancy, it is priced at $1.5 million.

For luxury new home buyers shopping for a unique upper-bracket home in Old Town, Lincoln Park and Graceland West, the Tim Salm Group at Jameson Sotheby’s International Realty (312-751-0300) offers the following residences:

• Lincoln Park. A 5-bedroom, 5.5-bath new-construction home at 2545 N. Wayne showcases more than 5,250 square feet of living area. Built by award-winning Stonebridge Development Group, the light-filled, multi-level home has a chef’s kitchen with professional grade appliances and quartz counter tops.

The lower level showcases a spa bath and a spacious recreation/media room. The home has outdoor space on multiple levels with a raised terrace off the family room. The penthouse level offers a bonus room and access to two additional roof terraces. Scheduled for November delivery, the home is priced at $2.779 million.

• Old Town. This 5-bedroom or 6-bedroom gut-rehab home plus addition at 1805 N. Sedgwick St. features an office, a den and more than 6,000 square feet of living area. Elevator rises to huge rooftop deck with gorgeous views. The home also has a coach-house room over garage, and a glass window-wall throughout the entire rear addition. Delivery is scheduled in about 90 days. Price: $3.8-millon.

• Graceland West. A unique “East Coast-style” design, this ultra-luxury home at 4122 N. Greenview showcases 7,700 square feet of living area, plus outdoor space. The residence, under construction on a 41-by-161-foot lot, is priced at $4.95 million. Completion is scheduled in 60 to 90 days.

For more housing news, visit Don DeBat is co-author of “Escaping Condo Jail,” the ultimate survival guide for condominium living. Visit

“The book is Escaping Condo Jail by Sara Benson and Don DeBat. I would say that anybody thinking about buying a condo, or even anybody serving on a condo board, or anybody who has any connection to a condo, this is must reading—all 600 and something pages. Thanks a lot for a great book!”


Steve Sanders, “Your Money Matters” WGN TV, December 22, 2014

By Don DeBat

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