General Area in Chicago>Question Details

Melissa, Both Buyer and Seller in Chicago, IL

Which Chicago suburbs are the best for young families?

Asked by Melissa, Chicago, IL Mon Apr 11, 2011

My husband and I plan on moving from River North to the suburbs soon. We're in our early 30s and plan on having kids soon. He works in Rosemont (drives there) and I work downtown (via public transit). We're looking for a suburb that has a nice downtown area, close to the metra, and has good day cares and good schools. We are really interested in buying new construction (or at least a house that's 10 years old or newer), and would like to have a decent sized backyard. Our budget is around $600,000 for a 3 bedroom or larger. Does anyone have any suggestions on suburbs? We recently visited Glenview and hated it. Aside from the shopping center, the city seemed dated and depressing. Are there any well kept suburbs where we might find something in our price range? Any specific pros and cons of various suburbs would be great. Thanks!

Help the community by answering this question:


Realtors are going to have a hard time suggesting where you should live because they don't want to be accused of "steering," which is illegal. A Realtor can help you once you narrow down to which suburbs you like or identify which areas have good schools.

The information in this answer is general information and is not intended as legal advice, nor do I intend to create an attorney-client relationship with any reader by answering this question or otherwise contributing as a member of
2 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 12, 2011

Naperville in Dupage county has everything that you have described, with diverse communities. Schools are well rated both private and public and there is no shortage of activities, restaurants and shopping centers.

Although I now live in Naples Florida I do have contacts in the area and would be happy to provide referrals.

Good luck to you and your family.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Aug 9, 2011
There are a lot of great suburbs that fit your description. I would start to narrow down the list by seeing areas would be an acceptable commute for you and your husband. From there I would research school districts to further narrow down your list. Then take some time in each of the suburbs on weekends and weekdays to get a feel for the area. Also, be sure to spend sometime in the downtown area if that is important to you. Once you find a couple suburbs you like, speak to a local realtor and begin your search for homes. Good Luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 14, 2011
Hi Melissa,
Wait another year to buy, prices are declining. Good Luck
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 12, 2011
Great question and I understand why you are asking, however a Realtor can not make a comment on this question. There are ways of conducting research on your own, including talking with parents at local schools and or using Google. Also, stats like local crime stats are avaialble for nearly every city and state on line.
Best of luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 12, 2011
Hi Melissa,

Why not stay in the North part of the city, i.e. Portage Park, Jefferson Park, Forrest Glen, Sauganash, Edison Park, Norwood Park, may not be able to get "new" construction but you can certainly get that family environment that you apparently desire.

I ran a quick search and found some great possibilities with back yards, some back into the forest preserves, most built in 2k, spacious/roomy, granite counters, hardwood floors, etc...the bells & whistles you may be looking for in newer construction.

As to the school system only you can determine if they meet your criteria, simply go the CPS website or your buyers agent can help you gather this. All these areas are "close" to both of your employment venues also, at least transportation wise.

Feel free to call me if you would like to further check out some of these areas.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 12, 2011
It would be best to check out transportation access for your husband's job,schools,contact the police station
for statistics on crime in the area,shopping,churches,the distance from the train station,day care centers,and
generally a feel for the community and what it is offering you and your family. Debbie Bergthold-Smith
Classic Real Estate 708-267-5552
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 12, 2011
Its pretty tough to narrow this down for you. It matters where you are trying to go. North/south/west. It would probably make sense to stay north with where you guys work. You may want to check out Arlington Heights up north. Also, if you dont mind the commute, Naperville is a very attractive place, but it may be too much of a commute for you.

Matt Laricy
Americorp Real Estate
Brokers Associate, e-PRO
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 12, 2011
All of them. You can use general information to determine which one best suits your family. Drive around. Look at school scores, public crime statistics, tax information, etc.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 12, 2011
Hi Melissa,

There are several great options out there for you and your family. You may also want to consider taxes and the Metra train schedules available in the area you choose. Having made the commute myself for years, I've become familiar with the fact that not all metra train lines are alike. Many Townships in the Chicagoland area have quaint downtown areas with newer construction avialable. I have experience with the River North real estate market as well.

Please feel free to contact me directly for more information.

Cari Potter
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 12, 2011
Melissa -

I would recommend Naperville, Lombard or Elmhurst. All have wonderful downtown areas and any of these areas can get new construction in your budget. I know of a few homes in Elmhurst right now that you can get for a great deal. They all have excellent school districts and close to Metra, would be close to commute for both of you. I can also recommend some custom builders and help you deal with them. I sold new construction for 15 years, so I am very familiar with builders. And they all have parks and excellent school districts.

Plus, all these areas have great conveniences.... nearby grocery stores, restaurants, malls, stores, etc. And all the parking is FREE!!!

Call me and I can give you more information. I am very familiar with these areas and have sold many homes in both areas before. My experience and knowlege are at your disposal at no cost. Sellers pay all commissions.

Suzanne Hamilton
Independent Broker Owner
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 11, 2011
Hi Melissa,

I can't downgrade any particular area, however I can point you in the right direction to websites that offer great information on school rankings and area amenities. Illinois or is an excellent resource to compare school rankings. The & has excellent information on communities.

If you are considering areas that have excellent Park District Programs and have a Small Town Feel, located along a trainline that runs to Chicago, Arlington Heights, Mt. Prospect, and Palatine are within a 20-30 drive of Rosemont (depending on traffic). These are wonderful communities... I am a local Realtor that specializes in these areas along with the Northwest Suburbs.

I would be happy to discuss your search personally with you including the housing choices for your budget and search criteria.

I can be reached directly at 847-275-5528

David Jaffe-SRES, CDPE
Realtor-Coldwell Banker
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 11, 2011
None. The city is the best! If you MUST go to the burbs then Park Ridge is nice. You can't aford the really nice burbs on the north shore but Evanston is in your price range (but not new construction, which is usually cheap crap anyway).
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 11, 2011
If you are planning to have a kids move somewhere where the greatest schools are. Very good suburbs to raise your kids:
-1. Naperville,
2. Wilmette,
3. Arlington Hts.
4. Elmhurst,
5. any other with good schools ratings..........
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 11, 2011
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