The Properties: Three suburban houses have each sold for exactly $1 million in the month since I reported what $1 million buys in the city. Let’s take a look at what suburban homebuyers are getting for that benchmark price right now.
A 12-room all-brick house built in 1999 just down the block from amenity-packed Prospect Park in Clarendon Hills was on the market for only four days in early June before it went under contract. The selling agent, Courtney Stach, says that while the first and second floors of the house are very nicely done—with maple floors, a designer kitchen, and French doors to the backyard—the “club style” basement was a big draw. It has a full kitchen, a pool table area, surround sound, a marble bath, and stained glass over the window wells. The first people to look at the house bought it; the sale closed July 30th.
A modern 14-room Victorian built six years ago a few blocks west of Naperville’s thrumming downtown had been on the market almost exactly a year when it went under contract in late May. (This sale also closed July 30th.) It, too, has an upgraded basement, but the upstairs has nice interior finishes, including extensive wood trim and “lots and lots” of closet space, says Terri Hunt, the selling agent. She says the home’s finest points are two screened porches—one off the kitchen and family room, another on the second floor, off the master bedroom—a broad front porch, and a pretty, landscaped yard.
A 10-room Colonial-style home a few blocks from downtown Winnetka sold in six weeks this summer—after having been taken off the market last summer. Built in 1969, its kitchen and two-plus baths were renovated in 2003. The family room has a cathedral ceiling and French doors to the backyard, and the master suite includes a dressing room. Jean Wright, the agent for the sellers, says that the house is in “wonderful, almost perfect condition,” and that she had several potential buyers make inquiries even after the August 4th closing.
Price Points: I could find a recent sale price for only one of the trio, the Naperville house. The DuPage County Recorder’s files show that the sellers there had paid $1.15 million for the house in 2004; their 2010 sale price represents a loss of 13 percent. The Winnetka owners bought the house in 1987, according to the Cook County Recorder of Deeds; the file there does not show what they paid. And the Clarendon Hills house was custom-built for its recent sellers. DuPage records show they paid $631,500 for the lot in 1999, but do not indicate what they paid to build the house. Stach, their agent, says comparable homes in Clarendon Hills were priced at $1.199 million and $1.299 million; her clients wanted to get the house sold, so they “power-priced” it to move.
Listing Agents: Clarendon Hills: Courtney Stach of County Line Properties; 630-209-1115. Naperville: Terri Hunt of RE/Max Suburban; 847-230-7060. Winnetka: Jean Wright of Jean Wright Real Estate; 847-446-9166.