West Harrison condo auction may yield 'deals,' 'steals'

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A dozen "updated" vintage condominiums at the west end of Harrison Street in Oak Park will be auctioned off in September, likely for less than the units' asking prices.

Four of the units will be sold for the highest bid regardless of what the final price is, said Rick Levin, whose firm will auction the condos.

"It's fair to say buyers will get a deal," Levin said of the auction, adding that it's unknown whether they'll get "a steal."

He said auctions can produce sale prices that are 5 percent to 30 percent below asking prices.

If auctions brought on higher sale prices than a seller could get on the market, they would be more common, Levin said. While he promotes auctions as a good way to get a deal, he says he needs also to watch out for his client's?#34;the seller's?#34;interest in making money. That's done in part by generating interest for the auction, he said.

Levin said he auctions properties all over the country for different types of sellers, including divorcees, families of the deceased, and, in the Harrison case, for developers wanting to cash out and move to the next project.

Sellers may have to settle for a lower price through auctions, but the benefit is having a known date of when they will be able to collect on their investment, relieving them of the worry and expense of owning the units over time, Levin said.

Most of the one-bedroom units at 1118-1128 W. Harrison St., offer new kitchens, granite countertops, new baths, refinished hardwood floors and washer/dryer hook-ups. The building has a new roof, boiler, plumbing and electric, according to an ad Levin placed the Chicago Sun-Times.

Levin said he had no way of predicting the prices of successful bids, but the ad states the units were previously priced up to $189,000 and that the suggested opening bid is $100,000.

The building is owned by Westchester-based D & H Development LLC, Levin said.

Bidders need to bring $6,000 cashier checks written to themselves to the auction and be ready to put down 10 percent of the sale price within a week. Buyers close on their new properties about a month and a half later, Levin said, so only serious buyers should bid.

The auction will be held Sept. 27 at 7:30 p.m. at the Carleton Hotel, 1110 Pleasant St., Oak Park. For open house times or a bidder's information packet, visit Rick Levin & Associates online at www.ricklevin.com or call 773-252-4500.

?#34;Drew Carter

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