When looking for residences, those from the millennial generation prefer value to pizzazz, says a new survey by Wakefield Research for Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate. In contrast to what their boomer parents sought, they’re looking for places that are packed with essentials instead of luxuries, such as transmutable spaces that can be customized, tech-friendly systems and high-efficiency mechanics and appliances — all on top of sustainable design and details. Plus, they want those places to be in pedestrian-friendly downtown neighborhoods with nearby public transportation, restaurants, shops, offices and services.
These findings are “totally on target,” says Amanda Bell (left, call 773-706-7442), Baird & Warner broker and, at 32 years old, a member of the millennial generation. “We’ve witnessed the housing slump, and seeing the market come back so fast, we’re wary and really careful about how we spend our money. We’re looking for value and resale potential, and rather than the best home on the block, we’re interested in the neighborhood and the quality of the space so we can make a place our own.” She notes that second bedrooms and parking spaces are prized features for resale down the line, even if they aren’t a necessity at purchase time. All these qualities make 1000 W. Washington unit 331, a fully renovated, 1,000-square-foot timber loft with a 20-foot-wide open-plan living area, hardwood floors, stainless steel appliances, a private deck and a spacious, spa-like bathroom — right in the thick of the West Loop — a good and affordable option at $250,000. A parking space is extra for $19,900 (call Baird & Warner broker Nicholas Colagiovanni, 312-501-5151).
WHY BUY? With housing prices and interest rates now at incredibly low levels (compared to highs just five years ago), “mortgage payments can be cheaper than rent,” notes Prudential Rubloff broker Brad Lippitz. “And that means good apartments go fast.” New to market — and sure to go soon — is this two-bedroom, one-bath, fully renovated 1920 apartment with an open living and dining area and a parking space at 6307 N. Glenwood (unit 3N) in Edgewater for $229,000 (call Lippitz at 773-404-1144).
TABLE IT: Legendary British designer Sir Terence Conran’s new collection for JCPenney is loaded with well-priced, practical pieces that are high on utility and style, like these wooden Tullia nesting tables. $295 for two, 7601 S. Cicero, (773) 581-6600, Jcpenney.com.
Story by Lisa Skolnik