Classic bungalows are a Chicago staple — and an affordable housing option.
If you’re looking for a home with comfort, quality construction and decent square footage — minus the high price tag — consider a classic bungalow. Combining thoughtful design, sound construction and affordability, the American version of this home flourished in the early 20th century, and remains a great value today — especially in Chicago. Our city is a bungalow bastion thanks to former Mayor Richard M. Daley, who lionized the dwelling in 2000 with his Historic Chicago Bungalow Initiative, which is still in place to help spur sensitive restorations of the structures.
In Chicago, the iconic bungalow is a compact brick structure that’s one-and-a-half stories high and 20 feet wide, and situated on a standard city lot (25’ x 125’). Despite the rigid standards, options abound in a broad price range. At the top of the rung is 2857 W. Wilson, a handsome four-bedroom, three-bathroom 1919 model in Ravenswood Manor with a detached two-car garage for $669,000. With artful, multipaned leaded glass windows, an elegant tiled roof and expansive interior with Craftsman detailing, it’s a definitive example of Chicago’s finest. “It’s also in pristine shape and set on an oversized corner lot. So it’s extremely sunny and has a gorgeous yard that’s larger than what you usually get with a Chicago bungalow,” says Baird & Warner broker Mary Jaeger (call 312-720-0690).
Set on a corner lot, this Ravenswood Manor home (2857 W. Wilson, above) gets more sunlight than your average bungalow.
Well-priced bungalows are available across the city. On the far South Side in Beverly, at 10747 S. Hale, a 1,800-square-foot, four-bed, two-bath 1925 classic on an oversized lot comes in at $145,000 (call Dream Town broker Ting Sutana, 312-545-3207). Nearby, at 9947 S. Damen, a grander option is a 3,200-square-foot, five-bed, 2.5-bath built in 1919 with an oversized lot and intact architectural details for $435,000 (call Prudential broker Nancy Hotchkiss, 708-237-7722). On the Northwest Side, there’s 5639 W. Patterson, a recently updated three-bed two-bath with a two-car garage for $269,500 (call Century 21 broker Nancy Dukic, 773-575-0929). Far north in Rogers Park, a 1,866-square-foot, four-bed 2.5-bath at 2937 W. Greenleaf — with impeccably preserved Craftsman detailing — can be purchased for $419,900 (call Century 21 broker Phyllis Smith, 847-677-1200).
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Story by Lisa Skolnik