Home Buying in 60611>Question Details

Sandra, Home Buyer in Chicago, IL

What do you think of buying a condo in the Hancock Centre ..... is it a good investment etc.?

Asked by Sandra, Chicago, IL Mon Dec 31, 2007

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Sheldon, the fact that the units with crossbars were originally discounted, has no bearing on the fact that when two clients of mine, when they were looking found the units with crossbars to be more desirable. I haven't sold a unit in the building for quite a while, so i can't really comment on current desires, but in the recent past, the crossbar units were in demand.

The original developers of the Hancock clearly thought that the crossbars would be undesirable, yet the public seems to have a different opinion.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 21, 2008
Alan May, Real Estate Pro in Evanston, IL
I'm just a punny, punny guy.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2008
Alan May, Real Estate Pro in Evanston, IL
I don't agree, about the crossbar, Sheldon... both of my clients were actually "seeking" units with crossbars. And their indication to me was that all of their friends wanted units with crossbars running through them.

While the bars can impede the views a bit, they help make the unit more of a "signature" unit (get it... Hancock? Signature?... never mind)... in constantly reminding them and their visitors which building they're in.

It's unique and can't be missed. I'd be interested in hearing other opinions, of people who've sold in this building.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Jan 5, 2008
Alan May, Real Estate Pro in Evanston, IL
The Honcock building is an interesting investment given that the cost per square foot is rather inexpensive given the cost per square foot in other buildings in the area.When purchasing in the building keep in mind that ceiling heights vary by floor and there are floors that have ceiling heights as high as 11 feet.

If I had a client who was considering purchasing in the building, I would recommend that he/she try to find an apartment with higher ceiling heights as this type of apartment would be more competitve with newer buildings that are now being constructed with 9 to 10 foot ceilings. A would also recommend that the client try to find a unit without a crossbar as these apartments tend to have better resale value.

Keep in mind, space feels larger with higher ceilings and the higher ceilings definitely help when reselling an apartment
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 4, 2008
If you get a good price, yes. Just like any property, if you buy for a better price than everyone else, it is an excellent investment. No one can predict the future but chances are there won't be any freak price changes. Your odds of the Hancock Centre going up or down is about the same as any existing high-rise in downtown Chicago. There is a lot of choice out there and everyone likes different things. I don't think you can go wrong with such a significant piece of Chicago - IF you get an excellent price. If you pay what every one else is paying now, then you won't know if it is a good investment until years later when you go to sell.

Web Reference: http://www.Oak-Park-IL.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Jan 2, 2008
Ruthless, Other/Just Looking in 60558
It depends.

Of course you realize you are buying into location and history, and if that is what you want, then it's a good investment because that is what you get with the Hancock.

You also get an old building with coin laundry and window units (as is the case with many of the older high rises in Chicago). Obviously, as an investor you would be competing with those newer amenity buildings. But again, the Hancock's location and views are to-die-for, so it depends on what you are looking for

It's a mixed-used building, and that has it advantages and disadvantages.

If you're looking to rent it out, units in the last year have rented for about just under $2 a sq. ft., so you would have to measure that return v. your out-of-pockets to weight whether or not it would be a good investment for you.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Dec 31, 2007
Sandra, that's a really difficult question to answer, because it's so subjective, so I'll give you some statistics that may help you make that decision.

There have been units in 175 E. Delaware (the John Hancock Residences) that over the last 2 difficult years have lost substantial value. Is the real estate economy poised to begin climbing? Even the experts can't agree which direction we're about to go.

That being said, the Hancock has always been a desirable address. There are currently 19 units active in the Hancock, ranging from $229,900 all they way up to $2,999,000 (five of those under contract, with varying market times, 36 days, 284, 443, 14 and 208)

Over the past year, we've seen 36 units in the 705 unit building close, out of the 91 that went on market. (55 of them cancelled or expired). The average close was for 518,402 from a list price of 567,755 (91.3% list/close ratio)... a little below the average in a difficult market. Although some of the lower priced units (under $500,000) seemed to move more quickly with market times well under 30 days.

Hope that's helpful.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Dec 31, 2007
Alan May, Real Estate Pro in Evanston, IL
Hi Ruth,

I did read the other posts and naturally did not address the laundry situation in the Hancock building as it was already covered. I believe in providing value added information to the public. When I work with a client, I am always concerned about resale, and so that you are aware, when the Hancock building first went condo, units with the crossbar were discounted from the ones that did not have the bar. I was 28 years of age at the time.

To make sure I am not having a senior mement, I also consulted my broker manager who is extremely knowledgeable and has been on a number of real estate boards, and he too confirmed that units with crossbars where discounted when the Hancock originally went condo.

I do undstand that some people may enjoy the bar for its aesthetic value but I believe that it is important to explain the nuancesof a building based on factual information and potential resale value.

Hopefully, the discussion and issue of crossbars at the Hancock and their relative value is now cleared up.
Web Reference: http://Sheldonchicago.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 21, 2008
Sorry to borrow your post.

It's now wrapped up for a Valentine gift.

A pun! I love it. You made one on another post and didn't even realize it - sq ft footing.

I hesitantly gave you a TU. I wonder if you read the other posts first. What you said is very helpful but I think it has to be measured against what Patti said coin laundry and window air units. And also as Elvis came back and said, the crossbars. Who knows for sure about that.

Web Reference: http://www.Oak-Park-IL.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 6, 2008
Ruthless, Other/Just Looking in 60558
Good response, Ruth. P.S. - I like your holiday graphics on your pic... ;-)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jan 2, 2008
TED SHOOP, Real Estate Pro in Buford, GA
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