A home in Portage Park

Photo: Dennis Rodkin

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List Price: $344,750
The Property: Everything from the inviting front porch to the basement walls has been taken care of meticulously in this home on a charming tree-lined block in Portage Park.

Showing me around the house a few days ago, sellers Carri and Mark Rogers could hardly stop ticking off details of the improvements, maintenance, and decorative work they’ve done during the dozen years since they bought the house.

The porch got upgraded and prettified (in a good way); it served the couple well while raising two boys, and now should be a buyer magnet, if this Tribune article is any indication. The family also solved an old seepage issue in the basement with extensive, professionally done re-sealing of the foundation and a modern drainage system; re-painted the vinyl siding for a fresher look; replaced everything in the kitchen except the cabinets; and put a new roof on the garage, among many other tasks.

One improvement was a deletion: an old, decaying rooftop deck off the master bedroom had to go. But with the removal done, the next owner gets the option of doing the more fun part: designing and having installed a new deck.

All that TLC bolsters the house’s desirability, just as a steel beam in the basement bolsters the house itself. (A lumber beam is more typical in middle-class homes of this early 20th century vintage.)

The house has a big living room, a handsome vintage staircase, and well-kept original light maple hardwood floors throughout. The three bedrooms share a full bath; there’s a second full bath in the basement.

There’s also a side driveway to a rear 1.5-car garage, but in this very connected city neighborhood, you might not use a car much. The Montrose Blue Line station and the Mayfair Metra’s Milwaukee North line are both within walking distance. But for car users, there’s access to the Kennedy Expressway a few blocks from home, too. “We bought here because it’s so accessible to everything,” Carri Rogers says.

Also walkable is the 36-acre park that shares the neighborhood’s name. (Its pool was the site of swimming events in the Pan-American Games in 1959, and of Olympic trials for American swimmers in 1972.) The Six Corners shopping district is a few blocks away, too, although one of its chief attractions, the Portage Theater, is closed and in limbo as of last week.

Even with all that commerce and activity nearby, the block this house is on is quiet and family-friendly, down to the speed bumps that slow down cars that might wander into this little bit of Mayberry off Milwaukee Avenue.

Mark Rogers has taken a job in Texas; the couple put the house on the market May 22.

Listing Agent: Jan Robertson of Century 21 McMullen, 773-251-7433, c21janrobertson@aol.com