What are the pros and cons of living in a highrise?

Asked by Trulia Chicago, Chicago, IL Wed Nov 7, 2012

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Dirk Gould’s answer
Dirk Gould, Agent, Chicago, IL
Wed Nov 7, 2012
All very good answers. However, one of the biggest cons that has not been mentioned is the greater likelihood of a large special assessment in older buildings. I have a few clients who recently had their original highrise windows replaced (the buildings were constructed in the 70s). Their share of the special assessment was $25,000. Smaller buildings don't require the same equipment so the costs are not nearly as great. In theory, the Association should run reserve studies to budget for these large costs. If the Association is diligent and keeps up, it usually means you will be paying very high regular assessments rather than get slammed with a large special. If you decide to buy in a highrise, make sure you have a good agent to investigate reserves, minutes of the meetings, age of the building, etc.
1 vote
Irina Karan, Agent, Aventura, FL
Wed Nov 7, 2012
Pros - cheaper maintenance (more units share the responsibility), less flying bugs on higher floors,
bigger community of neighbors (meeting new people where you live and play), VIEWS, sunrises, sunsets, no flooding if living higher floors, usually nice amenities, architecturally pleasing, no bugs that crawl in from the ground.

Cons - higher assessments (to wash windows, to seal the seams, to paint), higher insurance if
work is done on the building. Stronger winds. Longer elevator rides/longer waiting for the elevator (unless there are many). Ears clogging (if a really tall building) while riding in the elevator.

Hope this helps,

Irina Karan
Beachfront Realty, Inc.
1 vote
Manuel Brown, Agent, Chicago, IL
Wed Nov 7, 2012
Here are just a few

The pros:

24 Hour maintenance
24 Hour door Staff in many high rises
Receiving Rooms for when you are out and FedX, UPS
Fitness Center in many highrises
Party Room in many highrises
Some highrises have in unit washer/dryers and in building laundry for large items


Waiting on elevators
Most have laundry rooms in not in-unit washer dryer
Less intimate with neighbors
1 vote
Josh Weinberg…, Agent, Chicago, IL
Wed Nov 14, 2012
It really depends on personal preference. The benefits are typically there are more utilities are included in the rent. Sometimes there are gyms, doorstaff, elevators, pool, or other amenities that smaller buildings do not have. It also depends where you want to live, some areas only have options for highrises and some are more likely to be walkups (brownstones, townhomes, etc.)
0 votes
Joe Schiller, Agent, Chicago, IL
Thu Nov 8, 2012
try it for sure.. rent if you can.. always about location
0 votes
Sohail Salah…, Agent, Chicago, IL
Wed Nov 7, 2012
There are many pros to living in a high rise, most important is the maintenance free living. Along with the maintenance free living you have additional costs which are your association dues which would be a con... now, living in a high rise can vary from building to building, some of doormen, pools, tennis courts, extra storage, on-site shopping and restaurants, fitness/ exercise rooms... some even have full brand name gyms attached, saunas, jacuzzis, libraries... the list can go on and on. Today I met with my clients in their new high rise in Uptown which had all of the above including on site health care, and 4 star restaurant.

Cons can be additional costs of living, lack of privacy, smaller living quarters. It's all a matter of personal preference and needs.

Sohail A. Salahuddin | Group Founder

Innovative Property Consultants Group | Sales and Leasing


Jameson Sotheby’s International Realty

425 W. North Ave. | Chicago, IL 60610 

O: 312.335.3230 | C: 312.437.7799 | F: 847.805.6030

"Locally Known, Globally Recognized"
0 votes
Thomas Kossn…, Agent, Chicago, IL
Wed Nov 7, 2012
Pro: Having a doorman. Con: Having a doorman. Its good to have one, but they know all your business.
Elevators are convenient, but also can be a pain to wait for them. They come in handy when you have lots of groceries, etc.
Pro: Most views from a highrise are nice. Especially with city and lake views.
Pro: Many have pools and nice work out rooms. And nice laundry rooms.
Pro: Parking garages Con: Parking garages. Its time consuming to go get your car. I hate the ones with valet parking. I despise other people touching my car. I have had valets smoke in my car numerous times
Pro: With a doorman or an office, you will never miss out on a Ups or Fed Ex delivery. Thats convenient.
Pro: Lots of cool neighbors. Con: Lots of really jerky neighbors as well.
Some people love living in high rises, some don't like it. It comes down to personal opinion.
0 votes
Robert McGui…, Agent, Denver, CO
Wed Nov 7, 2012
Trulia Chicago,

Good answers below. My pros would be - quiet, private, views, maintenance taken care of.
My cons would be - elevator going out and power outages, possibility of fires, sever storms, the concrete jungle living.

In all, high rise living is great for some and would be a nightmare for others. Not always the best lifestyle for kids and pets. Take some time visiting friends in highrises and asking all of the pertinent questions to see how you feel about the answers.

Robert McGuire ASR
Your Castle Real Estate
Direct - 303-669-1246
0 votes
Matt Laricy, Agent, Chicago, IL
Wed Nov 7, 2012
Better amenities
typically better views

0 votes
The Stephen…, Agent, Portland, OR
Wed Nov 7, 2012
I love it because they are generally pretty quiet (with all the thick concrete walls and floors. Also, they can command a great view and a stable resale value.
0 votes
allan erps,A…, Agent, Pearl River, NY
Wed Nov 7, 2012
cleaner air & the views on the pro side. Power outages & bad weather as a few cons!
0 votes
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