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The Five Least Expensive Properties for Sale in The Loop

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Unlike most other American central business districts, living in The Loop is not as forbidding. You've got prime park space, riverwalk, a restaurant scene (dominated by chains and partial to early closing hours, but still...), shopping, and, at the southern edge along Roosevelt or up into River North, supermarkets. So, while residential use is secondary to the business day, you can still reside here with relative ease. And more and more folks are doing just that. New condominium developments sprung up in boom years (235 Van Buren, 60 E Monroe, etc.) and the converted Randolph Tower City Apartments are just now bringing 300+ rental units on board. Since the build-out, demand for Loop condos has weakened so there's plenty to be had at prices well below River North or Streeterville. The five cheapies we've compiled for you oughta give a sense of what we mean. As usual, they're all active MLS-derived properties. Some are short sales, but none are full blown foreclosures. Enjoy!

5.40 E 9th St. #515
Asking Price: $107,500
Size: one-bed/one-bath, 800 sf
The Skinny: The priciest of the lot, this fifth-floor one-bed couldn't belong to a more nondescript building. The space itself is fully carpeted (yuck), clean, relatively spacious, and—we suppose—laden with potential. Go nuts! Assessments: $308/month.

4.800 S Wells St. #839
Asking Price: $105,000
Size: Studio, 620 sf
The Skinny: On the market for a year now, this "huge" studio is another River City offering (there are lots, believe us). Whether or not buying here is a prudent decision, we must note the insane list of amenities. Highlights include indoor pool, sauna, steam room, park, and a health club. This eighth-floor unit does have a respectable kitchen and a lovely little balcony. Assessments run $374/month and parking is another $160+.

3.680 S Federal St. #805
Asking Price: $99,000
Size: one-bed/one-bath, 956 sf
The Skinny: We didn't have any listing photos to choose from, so we hope you'll accept the aerial. A short sale, this is the largest of the five (it even has a foyer and pantry! Good heavens!). In the vicinity of Printer's Row, you're well positioned amenity-wise. Assessments: $462/month.

2.182 W Lake St. #2010
Asking Price: $85,000
Size: Studio, 502 sf
The Skinny: This is probably the best sited of the five listings, at the heart of the theater district at Lake and Wells. The high-floor corner unit was recently listed for $174K, prior to becoming a short sale. The unit is currently rented for $950/month, so you'll have to wait at least until October to move in. The restored 1930 landmark building has a doorman, has an exercise room, sundeck, and on-site laundry. And you're right at the city's busiest "L" station served by the bulk of the CTA's lines. Assessments: $399/month.

1.800 S Wells St. #1147
Asking Price: $64,900
Size: Studio
The Skinny: The cheapest of the bunch by far, this 11th-floor River City studio. It sports "a newer carpet, blinds, and stove". Sounds like a wild and crazy time! We've seen a lot of bleak listings in River City (an odd mismatch exists between scope of amenities and quality of residences). Except for the penthouse unit that we touted a while back, the prices on most units have collapsed dramatically since first asking in the mid-six figures following its late-90s condo conversion. A nasty flood further hindered the building's marketability. But if you just want something dirt cheap in The Loop, as cheap as humanly possible, River City's got it. We're don't know the fine print, but according to the listing, all assessments are paid.