Thursday, December 10, 2009

Chicago Home (Igloo) Estates

ords don't even begin to describe what a minus 30 degree wind chill feels like when you're leaving the office at the end of the day. Good thing the Northside housing market has been throwing off some heat lately. Still, I think I'll stick around for a few more Chicago real estate closings before finding a cruise ship to jump on...and I don't mean Alaska either.

The other way, baby.

Geno Petro

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Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Chicago Paydirt @ Hawthorne

Took a weekend off from the Chicago Real Estate biz to check out the ponies in Cicero. A bit chilly but profitable as my 39-1 placed in the third. Not exactly sure how that happened but now my wife Mona wants a racehorse. Guess I better start cleaning out the garage at the old Forest Glen homestead.


Geno Petro

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Sunday, November 29, 2009

Streeterville Happy Ending

would hope , at the very least, a sponge bath is included in the price (although I suppose price gouging is one way to keep unwanted 'overnight guests' away). Ah Chicago.... and her user fees.

One thing is for sure...somebody should be getting a happy ending for the fifty bucks.

(It's just this downtown Realtor's not so humble opinion.)

Geno Petro

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Saturday, November 14, 2009

Prime Chicago Real Estate

A view from the vestibule of a Pre-War apartment building on the lakefront; prime Chicago Real Estate, to be sure. Expand your horizons on LSD---Lake Shore Drive that is.

Geno Petro

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Friday, November 06, 2009

Coach Baggage

So I'm sitting in Coach (the part of the airplane, not the store) licking my downgraded wounds. I've been shunned from First Class, my Amex Rewards Points depleted to salted peanuts and weak tea for the remainder of the traveling year. The 6:25 am Departure sits on the tarmac in Philly. The talky dude next to me speaks he always does.

"Live in Chicago?" Him.

"Yes," say I.

"Me too," Him. "...Naperville," he adds.

"Nice." Me.

Awkward middle seat silence generally ensues. Note to self: Charge More on the Gold Card Next Year!

"Which suburb do you live in?" He presses...And so it goes.

The following is a good example of how the remainder of the urban myth verbally plays out. If you actually live within the city limits of Chicago and you travel often, you know what I'm talking about:

* If you're seated in Coach and someone says they're from Chicago this really means they're probably from DuPage County. Not a bad thing. I'm just saying.

* If the dude says he's from the Northside, this generally means Norwood Park or maybe even Lincolnwood. At least we're in the proper county now. (That would be Cook)

* If the twenty-something girl with the Diet Coke in the middle seat happens to mention that she lives in the Gold Coast, rest assured it's a Rental Property of some sort and she's not sweating the Property Tax bill this semi-annual go round. Her boyfriend might be but she's not. (Or, vice-versa, I suppose.)

* If the lass says she lives on Astor, bet the farm it's not in one of the 10 million dollar mansions in the 1200 block....

....because...if she lived in one of the ten million dollar mansions on Astor, in the 1200 block...she wouldn't be sitting next to you in Coach to begin with...nor would she be telling you where she lives at all. People on Astor just don't share these things with strangers on the tarmac. Not at 6:25 am. And certainly not in Philly. They're just not that talky.

Just saying...

Geno Petro

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Monday, November 02, 2009

Chicago Street Peeps

I must say... I've been stepping over and around these two lost souls on the sidewalk outside my Lincoln Park real estate office for as long as I can remember. It both saddens and pisses me off at the same time that they continue to ask me (and everyone else in the lakefront neighborhood) for booze money. The Chicago Fire Department, just steps away, is called to their aid at least once a month by unsuspecting, well intentioned passersby on the corners of Diversey and Halsted.

"One is too many and a thousand is not enough..." (Drinks, that is.) Or, so I've heard. Saddens and pisses, to be sure.

And so starts November, 2009, on the windy Chicago city streets. Nothing so bad that a drink of whiskey couldn't make worse. (Or, so I've heard...)

Geno Petro

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Thursday, October 22, 2009


Hey Chicago Real Estate Buyers
, TAKE NOTICE...More $$$ for you AND Existing Homeowners!!!!


My good friend Ed Hahn, Mortgage Loan Officer at Bank of America, just informed me about a new incentive program called America's Home Grant for Buyers AND existing Homeowners which could potentially yield a buyer $2,500 for a purchase and $1,250 for an existing homeowner on a refinance.

(He might not be the handsomest of the Hahn brothers but he can sure get a loan done.)

Qualification is based on either being a low income borrower or buying a property in qualifying census tracts in Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kendall, McHenry and Will counties. This money is non-repayable and is yet another incentive for buyers to move forward and purchase this year.

Geno Petro

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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Chicago Bungalow Beauty

The circa 1920's checkerboard brick bungalow has for generations been a resale staple of the Chicago Real Estate scene. This particular example, just around the corner from my own house, is one of my faves---especially in the Autumn. They just don't make windows like this anymore.

Geno Petro

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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

HaLOLween Chicago!

Every hound in Forest Glen lifts it's leg on these four pumpkin heads during their daily strolls including...


'You Know Who'

No, not me....!!! THEM ....!!!

ps...I also just updated my Geno From Chicago 'Best Of' Archives from around the internet.

Geno Petro

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Monday, October 12, 2009

Thursday, October 08, 2009

'Take you Chinatown'

Little did I know, when I stumbled into the Nam Bac Hang herbal medicine store in Chinatown yesterday, that I would soon thereafter comprehend the true meaning of 'PROMOTES DETOXIFICATION.' When I embarked on this brief occidental Chicago Southside journey all I had in mind was a box of herbal tea and a plate of chow mein. No jing luo meridians. No happy endings. Just some some tea and some chow, that's all.

OMG. The neck bone's connected to the knee bone...and an hour later. OMG. (did I just say that?)

Anyway, I don't know if it was the 1400 mgs of Senna, the Chinese rhubarb, or the licorice root but let me just say...O.M.G.

living the clean life,

Geno Petro

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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Clark & Halsted Chicago

In a single autumnal sweep, the Summer of 2009 slips into the late September shadows, the White Sox (as well as others) become mathematically eliminated, and the old equine guard at Arlington shutters its racetrack grandstands until the next maiden season.

Here I stand above the crossroads of Clark and Halsted on Chicago's North Side observing The Plan---perhaps even as Burnham envisioned it over a full century ago. Look closely and you'll see the Clark Street Dog looming directly below. Ten blocks ahead and to the left marks the site of the St. Valentines Day Massacre---and to the right, The Biograph Theater where John Dillenger stole his last Midwestern breath.

I love the eclectic windy cityscape from this high Lakeview angle. It makes me consider how history might have played out differently if Dillenger would have simply turned left onto Clark and Bugsy Moran's crew, right onto Halsted, on those respective blood red letter days in Chicago history. After all, the road less traveled by makes all the difference from what I've read.

And I'm sure to be discussing this and other bits of Chi Town Real Estate fodder as I head back east to my college reunion this weekend. I'm excited to re-connect with all the other Slippery Rock Theater/Literature majors who, likewise over a thirty year period, never found a way to turn a real buck with their Liberal Arts degree(s).

Geno Petro

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Friday, September 25, 2009

Chicago Squeeze Play

It's the Two Six signature: innocent enough looking little bunny with a floppy ear, upside down Latin King crown (just to piss them off) and the star of David dotting the i of the Six. They started out as a baseball team in the 1960's on 26th Street but became a legitimate Southside Chicago street gang after sweeping the Cubs one weekend in intra-league play. (lol) Most recently they are known for shooting first and inquiring later. It's a Chicago Real Estate territory thing, I hear.

Anyway, I shot (okay, photographed) this tagged garage door in an East Village alley while showing Condos the other day. My client thought it was cute. I asked him if he was ever in a gang, reminding him that the Jewish Defense League didn't count. After a long pause, we decided to cross Ashland and look in Bucktown instead.

Geno Petro

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Thursday, September 17, 2009

My Chicago Smarter Agent Text Code!

Here's the latest real estate dealio, as they say on my corner:

Clients, past present, and future: Simply text my broker code, G23 and enter 87778 to download the entire Chicago Multiple Listing Service (MLS) application right to your cell phones – stored and ready to go via Smarter Agent!

Click the link below for more info: