Home Buying in 60062>Question Details

chiame.ellie, Home Buyer in Deerfield, IL

Really cute house, but ...

Asked by chiame.ellie, Deerfield, IL Thu Feb 21, 2013

My husband and I saw a really cute house that we like (http://www.trulia.com/property/3109056277-1707-Oak-Ave-North…). Should we purchase it, we would like to make it a 2-car garage, & add in a basement & 2nd floor. We found all the rules & regulations in the Northbrook village website, but can somebody give it to us in layman terms? Is what we want possible?

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Karen Feldman
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 24, 2013
Hi--sounds like an awful lot of work and expense. Have you spent time looking at homes in person to see if there are any that already have these features? It could be worth it to remodel if the location can't be beat, but it makes sense to see what else is out there first.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 14, 2013
It would be less expensive for you to buy an existing home that already has these additional features.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu May 30, 2013
Contact a local architect if you are serious about it. I used Towne for my addition. They know all the codes, what you can and cannot due without getting a variance. They will also be able to tell you what will require updating (electrical, water supply, etc.) when doing rehab work.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 4, 2013
Of course ANYTHING is possible. All it takes is money. It might not pay to make these improvements, but you could do it. You would most likely need to reconfigure the house, tear it down and start from scratch with the help of a talented architect.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 21, 2013

That's a wonderful and charming neighborhood--close to town, train and the park. As you may already know, Northbrook is a bit different than most of the other North Shore villages in that it has several different K-8 school districts--most of which feed into Glenbrook North High School. Are you targeting district 28, and if so, are you specifically interested in Meadowbrook Elementary School? If you are open to considering some of the other schools and districts within Northbrook, you would have more choices.

In terms of the construction projects you described, I think that the time, money and effort that you would sink into that extensive structural renovation would not pay off down the road. Adding a basement is difficult--and depending on the water table level there, it might require even more engineering "tweaks." It's also important to make sure that any renovations you make to a home are in sync with the immediate neighborhood in order to retain the property's value over time.

Let me know if you'd like to explore some other options that would fit your criteria.


Dayle Lively
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 21, 2013
This house is really cute. I've seen the inside. But most of the homes in that area don't have basements. That is just not the right house to Make that addition. There are a couple of other houses in Northbrook in district 28 that might work. There's actually a new house that came on in downtown Northbrook that I saw yesterday. 4 bedrooms. 2.1 baths. Basement. 2 car garage. Let me know if you'd like more info.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 21, 2013
I had an architect once tell me anything is possible, but... Adding a basement involves jacking the house up off its foundation, digging the basement, then putting the house back on its foundation. Adding a second floor first requires that you have a foundation that is strong enough to support a second floor. The two car garage would be very possible, provided it wouldn't violate any of the town's zoning ordinances. You probably need to talk to an engineer to get a really good answer to this question, and a contractor to discuss cost.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 21, 2013
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