Chicago Relocation

Chicago’s Public Library System – a 70 carat diamond

December 31, 2010

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As I enjoy my cappuccino on this beautiful New Year’s Eve morning (OK, it’s storming, but that means it’s above freezing in Chicago), I am greeted by the sounds of – silence.  Silence because my (ahem) angelic children are reading silently and happily to themselves.  And I owe today’s particular silence to the Chicago Public Library

Between myself and two kids, we are able to check out up to 90 items at a time – 30 per person.  With over 70 locations (mine is the main library on Congress/State – once the world’s largest municipal library), it’s perfect for Chicago residents of all ages.

Our library grew like a phoenix from the ashes of the Great Chicago Fire – According to their website “After Chicago’s Great Fire of October 8, 1871, A.H. Burgess of London proposed an “English Book Donation,” which he described, two months later, in the Tribune on December 7, 1871. ‘I propose that England should present a Free Library to Chicago, to remain there as a mark of sympathy now, and a keepsake and a token of true brotherly kindness forever’  ”   As an Irishman, I suspect there may have been some guilt for having their allies attack our lovely Fort Dearborn near Michigan/Wacker during the War of 1812, on whose grounds the original library stands , but that is purely the author’s speculation! 

Regardless, from first donation of 8000 books from England, the CPL now boasts a whopping 10,745,608  books (assuming my son returns “Top 100 grossest things in the world” when it is due.  But that’s not all – CDs, DVD’s, DOWNLOADABLE media (go the library from  your easy chair!).  It’s incredible.

So, newly arrived Chicagoans, here are your branches:

  • Harold Washington Library Center
  • Sulzer Regional Library
  • Woodson Regional Library
  • North Austin Branch
  • Albay Park Branch
  • Austin-Irving Branch
  • Harold Bezazian Branch
  • Bucktown-Wicker Park Branch
  • Budlong Woods Branch
  • Edgebrook Branch
  • Edgewater Branch
  • Galewood-Mont Clare Branch (Temporarily Relocated)
  • Humboldt Branch
  • Independence Branch
  • Jefferson Park Branch
  • Lincoln-Belmont Branch
  • Lincoln Park Branch
  • Logan Square Branch
  • Mayfair Branch
  • John Merlo Branch
  • North Austin Branch
  • North Pulaski Branch
  • Northtown Branch
  • Oriole Park Branch
  • Portage-Cragin Branch
  • Roden Branch
  • Rogers Park Branch
  • Uptown Branch
  • West Belmont Branch
  • George C. Hall Branch
  • Chicago  Bee Branch
  • Legler Branch
  • Austin Branch
  • Back of the Yards Branch
  • Blackstone Branch
  • Brighton Park Branch
  • Canaryville Branch
  • Chinatown Branch
  • Richard J. Daley Branch
  • Douglass Branch
  • Gage Park Branch
  • Garfield Ridge Branch
  • George Cleveland Hall Branch
  • Martin Luther King, Jr. Branch
  • Legler Branch
  • Rudy Lozano Branch
  • Mabel Manning Branch
  • McKinley Park Branch
  • Near North Branch
  • Roosevelt Branch
  • Sherman Park Branch
  • Toman Branch
  • Water Works
  • West Chicago Avenue
  • West Town Branch
  • Kelly Branch
  • Altgeld Branch
  • Avalon Branch
  • Beverly Branch
  • Brainerd Branch
  • Chicago Lawn Branch
  • Clearing Branch
  • Bessie Coleman Branch
  • Hegewisch Branch
  • Jeffery Manor Branch
  • Kelly Branch
  • Thurgood Marshall Branch
  • Mount Greenwood Branch
  • Pullman Branch
  • Scottsdale Branch
  • South Chicago Branch
  • South Shore Branch
  • Tuley Park Branch
  • Vodak East Side Branch
  • Walker Branch
  • West Englewood Branch
  • West Lawn Branch
  • West Pullman Branch
  • Wrightwood-Ashburn Branch
  • Whitney M. Young, Jr. Branch

Curl up with a good book tonight, Chicago!  I bet they have some on real estate investing.



How should I own my luxury investment property?

December 13, 2010

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I own real estate investment property.  The property is held in an LLC.  So I don’t actually own the property – I own the company that owns the property.  When investing in Chicago luxury real estate  or any real estate - is this the best way to go?  Some experts say yes;  A Limited Liability Company (LLC) is formed to shield the owner from liability, or to provide asset protection. 

Advocates of LLCs claim you own nothing but control everything; based on the concept of forming a company solely with the purpose of owning your property.  The partners take shares of the company and manage the day to day affairs.  At tax time you prepare taxes for the company, and depending on your state and the type of LLC, you will receive a profit or loss which will then be reported on your state and federal income tax.  Those who disagree suggest that simply having enough insurance should insulate the owner from any potential out of pocket expenses associated with liability. 

There are, however, many more considerations.  For an LLC to mortgage a property, there is generally a higher rate than if an individual mortgages the property (and then puts it into an LLC).  The problem isn’t getting a loan as much as it is the rate you’ll be charged.  Even at these historic lows, every penny counts!

DISCLAIMER – Before making a purchase and before deciding what type of ownership in which to hold property, please consult a lawyer and accountant.