List Price: $2.695 million
Sale Price: $2.1 million
The Property: This elegant Mediterranean house in River Forest was the town’s first home this year to sell for over $2 million. In 2008, five homes in River Forest sold for over $2 million. In 2007, there were three sales in that price range.

Originally built in 1929 and thoroughly renovated in the past two and a half years by its owner, the homebuilder Philip Saleh, the house now has 13 rooms, including a new addition that contains a downstairs family room and an expanded master suite. Saleh’s selling agent, Tony Iwersen, says both the kitchen and the master bedroom were “small, 1930s rooms” before the renovation. Saleh opened them up with his addition; he also installed all new plumbing and mechanical systems throughout the house.

At the same time, Saleh carefully preserved the home’s vintage features—its wrought iron staircase, its coffered ceilings, and its original plaster moldings and fireplace mantel. “It still looks like something out of an old Hollywood movie,” Iwersen says of the interior.

Iwersen, whose sales territory is River Forest, says he knows of no other homes in town that are slated to close at or over $2 million by the end of the year. That would leave this one at the top of the market. The deal closed October 30th; the buyers are not yet identified in public records.

Price Points: Saleh paid $1.69 million for the house in 2006, according to the Cook County Recorder of Deeds. When he first put the fully renovated house on the market (this past January), his asking price was $2.995 million. The final sale price is 70 percent of his original asking price, but Iwersen insists his client won’t complain. “He’s in the plus column,” Iwersen says.

Listing Agent: Tony Iwersen of Prudential Rubloff, 708-772-8040

Photos courtesy K Iwersen