Why a 19th century neighbourhood in Chicago was just named the hottest in the US for 2016

Ukrainian villageDavid Hilowitz/flickrWest Cortez Street in Ukrainian Village, Chicago, the hottest neighbourhood in the US.

If you’re in the market for a home, you may want to consider Ukrainian Village — a subdued Chicago neighbourhood adorned with brick and stone housing from the late 19th century.

Real estate website Redfin, which releases an annual list of the hottest neighbourhoods nationwide, recently named it 2016’s hottest neighbourhood.

What makes this spot so great?

We asked Steve Meyer, a Redfin real estate agent located in Chicago.

“While surrounded by better-known neighbours, Ukrainian Village is becoming a destination in its own right,” Meyer tells Business Insider. “It has significant architecture, including some beautiful Ukrainian Orthodox churches. The main strip, Chicago Avenue, is also developing commercially — it’s becoming popular for its nightlife and restaurant scene, and that wasn’t the case five years ago.”

Some of the popular restaurants and bars Meyer mentions include Lockdown Bar and Grill, Black Dog Gelato, and Bar Deville.

Untitled 2Redfin.comThis Ukrainian Village three bed, two and a half bath with a gorgeous view of the city is listed for $799,000.

The “better-known neighbours” that Meyer’s refers to are Wicker Park and Bucktown, two of Chicago’s fastest growing neighbourhoods over the past decade. Ukrainian Village is also close to the West Loop, an area that gained traction when Google decided to build a new campus there.

While Ukrainian Village is competing with these hot spots, it’s generally more affordable and not as densely populated, Meyer says, which gives it a leg up.

The 2015 median sales price for homes in the neighbourhood was $472,000, and houses are typically on the market for 22 days, Redfin found.

Another major appeal of the neighbourhood is its character and charm, which homebuyers are starting to prioritise more and more, Redfin noted in its report.

Much of Ukrainian Village is landmarked, which is why so many late 19th century brick flats and workers’ cottages have been preserved.

Untitled 3Redfin.comThis three bed, two bath in Ukrainian Village is listed for $349,900.

“You’ll find a lot of all-brick buildings where there are two residences, one on top of the other,” explains Meyer. “This architectural style takes advantage of Chicago’s long, narrow lots, and has become iconic not just for Ukrainian Village, but for the entire city.

“Because of the historical designation, developers in the area mostly choose to gut the interior of these buildings to create a single family home. This strategy can have a strong return on investment while maintaining the historic fa├žade of the neighbourhood.”

Interested in learning more? Check out Ukrainian Village real estate trends and more listings on Redfin.

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