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Why Chicago Bungalows Are Perfect For First Time Home Buyers 

They’ve been a popular option for Chicago homebuyers for more than 100 years, and it seems Chicago bungalows are just as popular today with certain buyers as they once were generations ago. Chicago bungalows first started popping up across the city a little more than a century ago.

Extremely popular in the early 20th century, bungalows provided the opportunity for some to gain entrance into the homebuying market. That’s a trend that really hasn’t changed over the years.

While the modest single-family homes were certainly appealing to first-time homebuyers all those years and decades ago, they remain extremely popular with young and first-time buyers today, as well. 

First-time home buyers are often attracted not only by the price, but also by the size and layout of the homes.

Generally, Chicago bungalows are:

  • 1,000-2,000 square feet
  • Sometimes have rooms built into the roof

They also typically have a central living room.

The price-point is definitely appealing for first-time buyers, as well. Because there are so many bungalows to choose from in Chicago, you can often find a wide variety.

A budget of just $350,000 can open the door to a large number of possibilities. Often, they’re not only the right price, but they have just the right amount of space for a young or growing family.

This makes the Chicago bungalow an affordable option for many working families and first-time homebuyers. For some, they give another option for buyers ready to move on from rentals, but not quite ready for some of Chicago’s larger home designs.

While some Chicago bungalows have been renovated and updated with new and more modern inclusions over the years, most still retain at least some of their original charm.

Typically, Chicago bungalows share several of the same characteristics:

  • Built 1910-1930
  • 1.5 stories
  • Rectangular (long on sides, narrow at front and rear)
  • Large windows
  • Low-pitched roof
  • Brick (some stone trim)
  • Offset front or side entrance

While most have standard floor plans, basements and even attic space can be finished off to create even more room for buyers to grow.

Builders in Chicago were quick to catch on to the trend more than a century ago, as bungalows were often the perfect solution to building on some of the city’s narrow lots. 

These days, tens of thousands of bungalows still stand in Chicago, making up about one-third of all single-family homes in the city. 

For Chicago area homebuyers, this means a wide variety of bungalows to choose from, virtually all across the city. 

Because demand for bungalows is still strong, they generally do tend to hold their value. That’s good news for first-time homebuyers. 

There are other benefits, too. Chicago bungalow buyers can sometimes qualify for certain tax benefits for buying and fixing up an older home. 

About the author

I am from Chicago, IL and I have been lending in this area for 20+ years. My team and I strive to give you an enjoyable mortgage experience while providing you the best programs and rates! I am also offering a FREE mortgage analysis to determine if refinancing is right for you.