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Moving to Downtown Chicago

Top Tips for Moving to Downtown Chicago

Moving to downtown Chicago can be an exciting adventure, but it also comes with its own set of challenges and considerations. From navigating the neighborhoods to finding the perfect apartment, there’s a lot to think about when making the move to the Windy City.

Wondering how to find downtown Chicago apartments, about neighborhoods, the benefits of working with a leasing agent, or the average rent in Chicago? Here are our top tips if you’re thinking of moving to Chicago!

1. Know Your Neighborhoods

Downtown Chicago is made up of several distinct neighborhoods, each with its own unique charm and character. From the bustling streets of the Loop to the trendy vibes of River North, there’s something for everyone in downtown Chicago. Before you start your apartment search, take some time to research the different neighborhoods and determine which one best fits your lifestyle and preferences.

Here’s a brief overview of some popular downtown Chicago neighborhoods and their average rent prices:

  • The Loop: Known for its iconic skyline and bustling business district, the Loop offers a mix of high-rise apartments and historic lofts. Average 1 bed rent: $2,300 – $3,000 per month.
  • River North: A trendy neighborhood known for its art galleries, nightlife, and upscale dining scene. Average 1 bed rent: $2,500 – $3,500 per month.
  • Streeterville: Located along the shores of Lake Michigan, Streeterville offers luxury high-rise living with stunning lake views. Average 1 bed rent: $2,000 – $3,200 per month.
  • West Loop: A former industrial area turned vibrant neighborhood, West Loop is known for its trendy restaurants, boutique shops, and loft-style apartments. Average 1 bed rent: $2,300 – $3,500 per month.

2. Work with a Leasing Agent

Navigating the downtown Chicago rental market can be daunting, but working with a leasing agent can make the process much easier and more efficient. A leasing agent can help you narrow down your search, find deals through their relationships with high rise buildings, take videos and do virtual tours if you’re out of state or busy, schedule apartment showings, and sometimes negotiate lease terms on your behalf. They have insider knowledge of the market and can help you find hidden gems that may not be listed online.

3. Timing Your Search

The downtown Chicago rental market moves quickly, especially during peak moving seasons like summer. To ensure you find the perfect apartment, start your search early and be prepared to act fast when you find a place you love. On the other hand, you also tend to find the best deals the closer you look to your move date. The sweet spot tends to be starting your search 30-60 days out from your move date.

4. Average Rent in Chicago

Renters coming from other big cities, such as New York, Boston, Seattle, Los Angeles, and San Francisco, tend to be pleasantly surprised that the average rent in downtown Chicago tends to be substantially lower than in other big cities. Most managed high rise buildings don’t ask for security deposits or move in fees, but most private landlords do.

5. Consider Transportation Options

Downtown Chicago is known for its excellent public transportation system, including buses and trains operated by the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA). Many downtown neighborhoods are also very walkable, with easy access to shops, restaurants, and entertainment venues. You really don’t need to have a car to get around downtown Chicago, but picking an apartment near the transit lines is an important consideration.

6. Embrace City Living

Moving to downtown Chicago offers an unparalleled urban experience, with endless opportunities for entertainment, dining, and cultural enrichment right at your doorstep. Embrace city living and take advantage of everything downtown Chicago has to offer, from world-class museums and theaters to waterfront parks and outdoor festivals. Get out and explore your new neighborhood, meet your neighbors, and immerse yourself in the vibrant energy of downtown Chicago.

Thinking of moving to downtown Chicago or wondering about average rent in Chicago? We’re happy to answer all of your questions! Contact us today to get in touch with one of our neighborhood experts.

A Tale of Two Cities: Moving From New York to Chicago

There’s a reason New York and downtown Chicago are world renowned cities. Moving from New York to Chicago? Here are some of the biggest similarities and differences you need to know between the two.

Moving from New York City to downtown Chicago

The Chicago River runs through the heart of the city

Biggest Similarity

One thing New Yorkers and Chicagoans alike appreciate about their cities is the vibrant and distinct culture of each neighborhood. If you like the elegant brownstones of The Village, take a stroll down Dearborn Street in the Gold Coast or down Sheffield in Lincoln Park.

Moving from New York City to downtown Chicago

Chicago’s Gold Coast and Lincoln Park neighborhoods are home to stunning brownstones, much like the ones you’d find in The Village

If SoHo is your vibe, check out the chic brick and timber lofts, galleries, and world-renowned restaurants of Fulton Market. Is Brooklyn more your scene? Head to Logan Square, Wicker Park, and West Town for a vibrant hipster artist scene mixed with tree-lined residential streets, coffee shops, and farmers markets. Another thing Chi City and the Big Apple have in common– both sure made great use of their waterfronts! If you’re seeking Cooney Island vibes, head to Navy Pier for boat cruises, carnival rides, the Ferris wheel, dining, fireworks, and incredible live events. When you’ve gotten your fix of the pier, stroll to North Avenue or Oak Street beaches for a fun round of volleyball or relaxing water-side yoga class.

Moving from New York to Chicago

Navy Pier is home to Chicago’s famous Ferris wheel, first designed to host the World’s Fair in the late 1800s!

Biggest Difference

Although Chicago streets feel quite bustling to Chicagoans, New Yorkers always marvel at how “little traffic” there is on both streets and sidewalks compared to downtown Manhattan. Chicago streets can get a little backed up during rush hour but for the most part, it’s easy to breeze between neighborhoods. New Yorkers also appreciate how easy it is to go for a run on the sidewalks compared to Manhattan and how many additional running and biking trails there are. From the 606 trail that runs through the western neighborhoods, ┬áthe Lakefront trail that runs through the eastern neighborhoods, and the Riverwalk that runs through the center of the city, to the smaller paths through any number of spacious local parks, like the two mile loop around Humboldt Park or the 5.5 mile loop through and around Lincoln Park, there are plenty of places to be in nature and unwind in the heart of downtown.

Moving from New York to Chicago

Many smaller lakes and ponds with running paths are scattered throughout Chicago’s neighborhoods

Moving from New York to Chicago? Contact us today! One of our neighborhood experts will be happy to guide you in your search and answer your questions. We are also offering both virtual and in person apartment tours. Be sure to ask about move in specials including free rent concessions!