Down by the Riverside

List Price: $784,900
The Property: Six years ago, in a small cluster of homes set in a wooded, U-shaped bend of the Des Plaines River immediately south of Riverside, the carpenter and building contractor Alex Pejsz found the project of his dreams: a handsome 1899 house sorely in need of restoration.

List Price: $784,900
The Property: Six years ago, in a small cluster of homes set in a wooded, U-shaped bend of the Des Plaines River immediately south of Riverside, the carpenter and building contractor Alex Pejsz found the project of his dreams: a handsome 1899 house sorely in need of restoration. Pejsz and his wife, Zanna, bought the 4,000-square-foot home—which had had only two owners—and planned to live there during the rehab. But the project turned out to be so big that the then-pregnant Zanna had to return to the couple’s native Poland for a short time.

Pejsz toiled on. In the course of three years he removed, restored, and replaced all of the home’s millwork; reworked the second floor to give the master bedroom an attached bathroom; and ripped up tile layovers to reveal intact hardwood floors. He had new mechanical systems installed and put in new bath fixtures and a modern kitchen that opens onto a large rear deck situated beneath a tall sycamore tree. The result is that this Victorian home now meets today’s standards but still feels about as genteel as it must have when first completed.

The setting contributes mightily to that feeling. Nearby, a few charming older homes sit beneath a high tree canopy, and just one door north of this house, the street ends at a pedestrian pathway that stretches about 100 yards to a footbridge over the river to Riverside’s picturesque, historic downtown.

Now the parents of three children, the Pejszes have decided to return to Europe after two decades in the United States.

Price Points: Alex Pejsz says that when he completed the restoration three years ago, the house was appraised at $1.2 million. He put it on the market in late March with an asking price of $799,900 but has since cut that to $784,900.

Listing Agent: Matt Garrison (773-936-6466 or mg@mattgarrisongroup.com) and Bob Kohler (773-983-5797 or bk@mattgarrisongroup.com) of the Matt Garrison Group at Coldwell Banker

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