Is W Jarvis Ave in Rogers Park a good neighborhood to buy a property? My fiance and I are really interested in a particular property but don't

Asked by Joy, Chicago, IL Sun Jan 3, 2010

know the area very well because we are relocating from NY. Any opinions would be greatly appreciated!

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Sharon Kozak, Agent, Evanston, IL
Sun Jan 3, 2010
You should be diligent in evaluating a neighborhood in another city/state! There are plenty of resourcses to use such as and the Rogers Park Business Alliance to give you a sense of community and commerce. I have lived in Rogers park for over 18 years and appreciate it's diversity and quaintness. Many of my clients have enjoyed the neighborhood and it's proximity to the lake and transportation. This is the only north side Chicago community with direct access to the lake and only minutes to downtown Evanston amenities.
1 vote
Will, , Chicago, IL
Sun Jan 3, 2010
I live in Rogers Park with my wife in an apartment at W Chase and the lake, and I love it. The area is very diverse and the parks are great. There are tons of great Mexican and Latin restaurants along Clark and a little India area on Devon that has literally a mile of Indian restaurants and shops, south along Broadway there are Ethiopian and Asian restaurants. We also really like the Korean BBQ on Western. Andersonville to the south also has some great shops and Restaurants,

Near the Jarvis el stop there is an Indian restaurant, it is a hole in the wall but you can get take out to take to the Irish bar across the street. There is also a wine shop and Italian restaurant, and Charmers, a great coffee house with good bagels.

As far as public transport you can take the Metra downtown in 15-20 minutes, or hop on the purple or redline or 147 express bus. Parking is not as bad as other neighborhoods, but can be a pain, at least in East Rogers Park.

The beaches are nice and just north in Evanston Northwestern has a sail beach were you can take sailing lessons, keep a small boat on the beach or learn wind surfing. People here love the lake. There a kayak beach at Touhy and the lake. Today it was 10 degrees out and there were 3 surfers in the lake, in heavy wetsuits, I am not lying.

For winter warren park in west Rogers Park has a ice skating rink and sledding hill.

Being so far north you are close to the suburbs, so you can get your multiplex or big box store fix. Evanston has some good restaurants; I like a sushi place and a vegetarian restaurant there.

Prices are lower in Rogers Park than many closer in neighborhood and prices are declining and will continue to do so as there have been a ton of foreclosures. We won’t buy unless we great a great deal. Check out this link for a story on the situation for some condo owners in Rogers Park:

If you want to rent there are tons of condos available on craigslist or check with Lee street they have lakefront apartments on Eastlake Terrace, we used to rent from them and would again.

If you are expecting an upscale neighborhood, you will be disappointed, but if you want to live in a diverse vibrant part of the city Rogers Park may be for you.

Good luck with your move.
1 vote
Robin Wilson, Agent, Winnetka, IL
Wed Jan 27, 2010
Having lived in Chicago for 15 years now & all over the City & suburbs, my method of attack has always been to lease first in a neighborhood before committing with both feet. When I wanted to live in the city for instance, I did a short lease in the Gold Coast. Quickly found I didn't enjoy the concrete nature of the high-rises...just not for me personally.

And that's honestly what I advise my clients to do as well. If you're new to the area, then how could you know where to live and what you like? Someone else mentioned talking to people from work or neighbors for input. A trip to town for the weekend hanging out in different neighborhoods will go a long way as well.

I recently had a great client come in town for just 2 short days from Long Beach CA and literally in four hours between those days, they were exposed to the Evanston through Lake Bluff neighborhoods. Their heads were so full of information by the time they left, and they were so thrilled to have spent the time doing the research. The results was a huge payoff, and we found a perfect property that met their needs in that short time.

Lucky for them, we spent a lot of phone time learning what they wanted before they got to town, and I quickly assessed what to include in their top ten list, which shortened the time spent once they were here. It works - you just have to take the time & trouble to make it work for you.
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David Bruno, , Chicago, IL
Tue Jan 26, 2010

You have already received some great advice! I agree that checking out the neighborhood at different times of the day to get real feeling of whats going on there. I have family and former clients that live very close to Jarvis and may be able to give you a better opinion of the neighborhood. Please feel free to email me and i will put you in contact with your possible future neighbors.

0 votes
Tom McCarey, Agent, Chicago, IL
Wed Jan 6, 2010
Hey Joy,

Finding a place from afar is tricky as it demands a certain leap of faith. Is the neighborhood good? Is the place worth it? Is it safe?

I think an important first step is to find a local expert to trust. Interview a couple of agents, maybe even a few who you see here, and take a look at properties with them. A few respondents have accurately pointed out that a real estate professional is bound by certain rules, regulations and laws that preclude us from commenting about an area's safety. But there are online resources that provide snapshots -

Obviously statistics are a dry and lifeless thing. Perhaps you have friends or acquaintances who live in the city to provide anecdotal information. Aside from this you may wish to bear in mind what an earlier respondent commented on - property values in Rogers Park, especially with respect to condos, have taken it on the chin. The area is densely populated, there are many rentals, and something as mundane as parking can sometimes be a bit complicated. While this may play a role in getting a good deal on a condo today it also may have an adverse impact on your potential resale.

Good luck with your search.

Tom McCarey
The Real Estate Lounge Chicago with @properties
Expertise in Negotiation, Luxury Home Marketing and Buyers' Representation
0 votes
Deborah Hess, Agent, Chicago, IL
Wed Jan 6, 2010
Hi Joy,
There are so many factors that influence whether a neighborhood is "good" for you, and you along with the guidance of an able Realtor who's very familiar with your likes and dislikes, are the best people to answer that question. But the answer to this question involves issues like the density of the neighborhood, the available schools, transportation, amenities within walking distance, and especially how you feel when walking around the neigborhood. Not always so easy to ascertain when the thermometer is below freezing.

You're obviously a sophisticated buyer to be on Trulia, asking the question, and I'm sure you're familiar with all the available internet resources to evaluate the "stats". If not, get in touch with me, and I will provide you with the list I offer to my clients. I also have some past clients, who may be of assistance in answering any questions you have. They have been very happy in the area for many years. One final piece of advice, once you've analyzed all the data, and done your due diligence, rely on your instincts!

Good luck with your decision,

Deborah Hess
The Deborah Hess Chicago Group
CONLON: A Real Estate Company
0 votes
Gerry Marzil…, , Oakbrook Terrace, IL
Mon Jan 4, 2010
If you would like, I have past clients that I have sold in the area...I can put you in touch with them.
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Wayne Beals, Agent, Chicago, IL
Mon Jan 4, 2010

Great Neighborhood. I have clients who recently purchased a home on Chase and they love it. Close to the lake, great transportation, lots of local restaurants and business districts, etc.

A great site for local info and stats is

Best of Luck...

Wayne Beals
0 votes
Gail Dobeski, Agent, Chicago, IL
Mon Jan 4, 2010

You have gotten some sound advice - be diligent about checking out an area/ block. Walk through at different times of the day/ days of the week. Talk to the people you meet, ask the questions that are important to you. Stop in the alderman's office - ask what is going on. Check out the schools on line (if applicable) and any police activity.

A good neighborhood is different things to different people.

Rogers Park certainly is a good value in terms of what you can get for your real estate dollar. Renting is a wonderful option to really get a good feel for the area.

Rogers Park is great for access to the suburbs, transportation and diversity.

Good Luck!

Gail Dobeski
Baird & Warner
0 votes
Philip Sencer, Agent, Chicago, IL
Sun Jan 3, 2010
Real Estate agents cannot comment on such questions because to do so might be in violation of federal anti discrimination laws like 'steering'. My standard answer to such questions is to suggest that you check with the police department on crime statistics. There are also many web sites that give crime data.
In addition, your definition of 'safe' might be rather different from another person. Most people tend not to buyin neighborhoods that they are not familiar perhaps first.
If you are relocating you might ask other employees where you work. I can show you a variety of properties in that area which also might help you get a better 'feel' for it. The market in Chicago has been slow and Rogers Park (all of it) has been more slow than average so unless this proeprty is a steal, you probably are in no need to rush to make a decision.

0 votes
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