Albany Park

Photo: Erik Unger/Chicago Tribune

A street in Albany Park

Q: We’re moving to Chicago and would love to live in North Center, Ravenswood, or Lincoln Square, but they’re out of our budget. What other neighborhoods would you recommend?
—Clarisa Medina-Poeliniz

A: If you’re looking to buy, consider this: According to Midwest Real Estate Data, last year the median standalone house in Lincoln Square went for $483,000; in North Center, $817,000. (The data aren’t broken out for Ravenswood.)

But just to the northwest, prices plunge: in Albany Park, the median was $218,000; in North Park, $248,000. Houses in those areas are generally smaller and older—and just a short drive to those hip North Side neighborhoods.

Can’t give up your North Side dream? Consider a condo or townhouse in Lincoln Square instead of a house: The median price there was $199,000.

Here's the bottom line: The median sale price difference between North Center and North Park is $569,000.

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