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Finding Housing in the Windy City

Jun 27, 2008
As one of the largest cities in the United States, Chicago is an enviable place to live. The economy in the city is varied and thriving and residents enjoy ample opportunities for entertainment when the work day is done. Unfortunately, so many people have fallen in love with Chicago that the housing prices remain constant in spite of market slumps in other parts of the country.

Even rental units can be costly. In fact, the director of Heartland Alliance's Institute on Poverty, estimates that almost a third of the renter in the Chicago area spend more than half of their income on housing. If renting is so costly, it might be wiser for families to consider buying there own home. It could be hard, but at least they are building up equity rather than lining someone else's pockets.

One way to find more affordable housing is to move further away from the city. This could mean a longer commute, social adjustments for families, and even cultural changes due to the new environment, but public transportation should keep the city accessible for employment and entertainment.

Although there are pricey districts in every sector of the city, the west and south sides are generally known for being more affordable than the loop and the northern sector. This makes the west and south parts of the city popular among students and families with lower incomes.

If your finances place you on the other side of the economic spectrum, there are also very expensive and posh housing accommodations in the windy city. For people who like to be right in the thick of it, a sky rise apartment in the loop will probably command beautiful views of Lake Michigan and cost as much as $1,000 per square foot. Or, many of the older warehouses in the city are being converted into loft apartments. And well-to-do families can find some of the most beautiful neighborhoods among the parks and beaches in northern Chicago though.

The sprawling metropolis known as Chicago land is massive though and provides housing options for everyone from the very poor to the very rich. If you are looking for a home that meets your budget and your needs, one of the best ways to sort through the hundreds of choices is to hire a local Realtor. They will be able to showcase the houses you are looking for in the neighborhoods you want and save you some time and money in the process.
About the Author
Chicago RE/MAX (http://www.illinoisproperty.com) is one of the best places to turn for experienced Realtors and up-to-date listings. As one of the most trusted names in the business, RE/MAX has a reputation to uphold with every new customer they serve. The author, Art Gib, is a freelance writer.
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