What To Look For In A Chicago Loft
Some lofts are just far better than others. Before you buy a Chicago loft, it’s important to delve into the factors that make the space work with your needs.
For example, location, ceiling height, natural light, noise and the exterior condition of the building.
A building with a great location that works for you is of course paramount. Public transportation, highway access, parking, restaurants and shops, parks and safety are a few important considerations. But the importance of location doesn’t stop at the doorstep.
It’s important to also look at location within the building. Is it close to an elevator? A mile walk to the lobby? Where is your parking spot in relation to the unit? Day-to-day this kind of stuff matters.
The physical condition of the loft building itself is often overlooked but in fact is just as critical or even more so than the condition of the unit itself.
Older loft conversions can be high maintenance. You’ll of course want to be aware of any special assessments and building issues early in the process. Your Best Chicago Properties broker will help you get the information you need so you don’t waste time looking at units in problematic buildings.
The financial health of the association is just as important as the condition of the building. You’ll have the opportunity to review the association’s financial statement, declaration, bylaws and minutes of the board before you buy.
Windows, Light, View
Because many of Chicago’s old warehouses were built on a city block thus quite square, many loft conversions are long and narrow with windows at one end providing limited light.
We advise our clients to consider an end unit with windows on two sides to bring more light in for the long Chicago winters.
Plus, look for “protected” view corridors – those overlooking a park, canal, or facing down a street, where new construction will have a minimal impact. A nice view is always a bonus but don’t pay more for it as in Chicago views can disappear with new construction!
Potential For Improvement
It’s always good to buy a loft condo that has some room for minor improvements that can translate into a higher sale price when the time comes to sell.