South Loop Condos Under 250k hard to find

The South Loop in Chicago was once filled with excess inventory. In 2011 there was roughly a three year supply of inventory. In 2012 there was over an 18 month supply of inventory. Now, there is only a few month supply of inventory, especially under 250k.

Why am I specifically talking about $250,000? If you are familiar with the South Loop market you will know that many new construction buildings had built small 1 Bedroom units. 1720 S. Michigan and 1620 S. Michigan are the most popular and had the most foreclosures. Some small 1 Bedroom units sold for only $105,000 to $115,000 just over a year ago. Those same units are now selling for $150,000. It is amazing how things have changed in the past year. 1529 S. State also had a handful of units on the market in the past but even that building is rebounding nicely.

Rent prices have also remained high in the South Loop with most 1 Bedrooms renting above $1,500 without parking. This has spurred many renters to become homeowners but also has created a great demand for investors especially as most South Loop buildings do not have any rental restrictions.

What buildings are the hottest in the South Loop?

1201 S. Prairie – Recently taken over by Related Midwest, 1201 S. Prairie, part of the Museum Park development is doing extremely well and is definitely the “most modern” of any South Loop development. 1305 S. Michigan continues to be red hot. While some short sales are transacting at low prices, these units do have very poor views. They are selling fast and above list price. Most units, however, are selling at “market rate” with most 2 Bedrooms selling in the low $300s.

1400 S. Michigan and 1250 S. Michigan continue to see very low inventory. Only two 1 Bedroom units are currently on the market in 1400 S. Michigan. You may remember several years ago an auction was held for the remaining units in this building. 1250 S. Michigan currently only has 1 unit available (several others are under contract). The unit currently available for sale is a 3 Bedroom condo priced at $750,000.

Museum Park: All Museum Park buildings continue to be in demand. Specifically One Bedrooms which once flooded the market are now hard to come by.


Paul Blackburn is an Illinois licensed Realtor and Broker with @ Properties in Chicago. He can always be reached via e-mail at

RELATED MIDWEST TAKES OVER MUSEUM PARK! 1201 Prairie, 1600 Museum Park, 1901 Calumet

One Museum Park West, located at 1201 S. Prairie, is one of those buildings in the South Loop that has mostly black windows at night and it is obvious that the majority of the units remain unsold. There was great concern over the past year, especially for those who bought into Museum Park West that the remaining units may become rentals. Crain’s Chicago has announced that Related Midwest (currently responsible for building apartments across Chicago) has teamed up with lenders to take over 238 units in 1201 S. Prairie (Museum Park West) as well as 98 condos in 1600 S. Prairie (1600 Museum Park) and 157 condos in Museum Park Place South located at 1901 S. Calumet.

The Good News? Related plans to sell the units! Related does not plan to turn these units into rentals. The first question that comes to mind is: “Will these units be fire sold?” The answer is actually no. While Related has yet to release pricing they do not plan to “drastically” reduce prices according to Crain’s. Instead, they plan to upgrade units with higher quality finishes and appliances along with adding new and more expanded amenities to each building.

A price reduction will be needed to move these units, however, a minor reduction in conjunction with upgrades and new amenities can definitely be enough to spur sales. While the South Loop has very high inventory levels at the current time, there is a shortage of quality inventory. Specifically 1201 Prairie will probably see the most interest due to its location and quality of amenities. The two bedroom plans I believe will be the most desirable as they are small than other 2 beds in 1211 S. Prairie, Museum Parks most prestigious building. The lower price point of these two beds due to smaller square footage will definitely attract buyers especially if finishes are upgraded well to compliment its sister building 1211 Prairie.

This type of acquisition is definitely a positive sign that the market is rebounding. This doesn’t mean prices are increasing but it means that stability is returning to the market place. Stability is key is pushing those on the fence to the buy side. It will be interesting to see what the pricing strategy is for Related on their new purchase!!!