I had to write and thank you for your help and expertise in the recent short sale of my condo. Before I contacted you, I had spoken to several different real estate agents who, because of the bad real estate market, wouldn’t even consider trying to sell my condo; they just kept putting me off. I was moving out of state and really needed to sell. It was very disappointing and disheartening, meeting with agent after agent who wasn’t willing to help. I wondered if they were only in real estate for the money, when times were better? And then I called you.
When we first met in my condo, you were friendly and outgoing. After we carefully discussed my situation, you suggested a short sale. You came very well prepared with information on the recent sales, time on the market, and asking/actual sold price differences for not only condos in my building but for those in the surrounding neighborhoods. You took the time to explain everything to me thoroughly and answered all my questions, making sure I understood completely about short sales, foreclosures, renting possibilities, and what exactly was happening in the real estate market, so I could make the best decision for my situation.
There were a lot of ups and downs pertaining to the sale of my condo because of the bad market; so much paperwork from the mortgage company, the lawyer, and the banks, but through it all you remained calm and confident, which in turn kept me calm, and for me, being halfway across the country, that meant a lot! You really did get me through this ordeal. This condo was my first real estate purchase and first real estate sale and you walked with me through it every step of the way, constantly explaining everything that was happening and truthfully answering all of my questions.
I truly cannot thank you enough. I believe the sale of my condo NEVER would have happened without YOU!!!! I have told family and friends how wonderful you are and how you really know your business when it comes to “all things real estate”. It is obvious you have been in this business for a long time, you are up-to-date on current issues/processes regarding real estate information. You are honest and open about everything and you truly care about your clients! I am so happy and grateful to have met you and was able to work with you. I would call you again in a heartbeat!!
Again, thank you for selling my condo and thank you for everything!
Karen is hands-down the best real estate professional I have worked with over the past 25 years and I have very high standards. I worked in a Fortune 500 world-class sales organization for many years that demanded excellence from it’s sales force. Karen provided to me ‘world-class’ management, sales and expertise in finding me the right tenant while maximizing my profit simultaneously in an incredible short amount of time.
I couldn’t have done it without Karen. I live over 1000 miles away from my income property in Chicago and Karen went above and beyond the call of duty by handling the entire rental process from ‘cradle to grave’ including; in-depth marketing analysis, high profile advertisement, scheduling and conducting showings, background checks, preparing all related lease documentation – out of the box lease solutions, service, signing and revenue collection. Not to mention, she has great intuition.
Karen also took a leadership role in executing necessary Landlord tasks that I couldn’t do as a result of my geography and dealt with current tenant challenges, detailed move-out inspections and resolutions with great perseverance and fairness for both my tenant and myself.
I highly recommend partnering with Karen for any property needs and know that I will reach-out to her for all my future real estate transactions.
– Shawn O
Unbeknownst to Lou and Karen, I had been looking for an investment property as a first time home buyer for over a year. I’d been through two real estate agents during that time. I found the Elias’ through a friend who had a good experience with them. We got an offer accepted in what seemed like a few weeks.
Working with the Elias’ is like getting a two for one which means more responsiveness and more attention. Karen walked me through the home buying process even though I had heard it before and I still learned a few things. More importantly, I appreciated that she wanted to walk me through it even though she knew I thought I knew it all.
Karen would call and follow-up with attorneys/sellers/lenders to make sure everything was being taken care of. We hit snags to get through closing (none of our faults) but the diligence of both Karen and Lou brought it to fruition.
While Karen was working mostly in the office, Lou was ready to show me a place nearly always the day I wanted to see it. His knowledge of what to look for in the bones of a building was impressive. He was real at pointing things out that could be problems and was easy to be around.
Neither one was pushy on a property (which I experienced in the past) while also offering me their opinions and knowledge about the industry/market when I asked for it. I would highly recommend this team to anybody looking to buy a home. I know I’ll be using them again.
– Chad G
Thank you for your help getting 20 East Goethe sold for me. I think you eeked every last nickel from the place!!
You did a GREAT job and I am very grateful for your efforts.
– Ken T
Karen and Lou have helped me through 2 purchases and 1 rental and I’ve recommended them to anyone I know looking to buy, sell, or rent in Chicago. For my condo purchase – my first ever home buying experience, Karen talked me through the whole process in plain English and made it easy to understand. She explained each step way before it happened so I knew exactly what to expect during the purchasing process, which minimized surprises and stress and made it as easy as it could be. She is incredibly patient with first-time buyers and sellers and spends as much time as necessary explaining everything. She answers phone calls and emails with lightning speed and never rushed me through anything, always taking as much time as I needed for each step in the complicated process.
For my second purchase- a new construction townhome with my significant other- Karen and Lou lived up to my expectations from my first purchase experience. They took the time to explain the differences between a new construction purchase and existing buildings, buying alone vs. with another person, and made sure I was set up with the best inspector, attorney, and other vendors needed who have more experience with new construction. Their vendor recommendations have always been spot-on and their attention to detail with each type of purchase has never let me down.
Karen also handled the listing for my condo when I rented it out and had to find a tenant, and also made that process easy as pie- handling all of the leasing paperwork and explaining my rights and duties as a new landlord, all of the showings, and helping me find the best possible tenant. It was rented literally 3 days after she listed it! I can’t recommend Chicago City Homes enough- especially for first-time and new homeowners, sellers, and renters. Their knowledge base and experience is second to none and I won’t trust anyone but Karen and Lou with my real estate questions and concerns. Thank you Karen and Lou!
– Michelle Kaffko and Joel Ebner
“They went above and beyond to get us in to see units…”
Karen and Lou are great! We were first time home buyers and Karen and Lou helped us throughout the entire buying process. They were easy to get a hold of via phone, email, and text. They went above and beyond to get us in to see units as soon as possible and gave us expert advice on neighborhoods and building associations. With Karen and Lou, buying a home was straight forward and thoroughly explained. We couldn’t be happier with the service we were provided.
“It is because of Karen’s knowledge, experience, and connections…”
If you are looking to buy or sell your home Karen Breen Elia is the women for the job! Karen helped my husband and I find our first home in the West Loop of Chicago back in 2010. It was our first time buying real estate and she took the time to explain the entire process and ensured we felt comfortable with all the steps that needed to take place in order to get us into our dream home. She did a wonderful job showing us a variety of different places, and used her many years of experience to guide us in selecting the perfect first home for us! When we closed on the condo Karen found for us it was a dream come true for us!
In March of 2014 we decided it was time to sell as our family was growing and we needed more space. We immediately contacted Karen and we knew she would be able to help us sell quickly and at a great price. We had a newborn at home and Karen was very considerate of the fact that our schedule had to revolve around the baby and that it would be difficult for us to be in and out of the condo for showings. Her strategy was to pre-release the listing to a select group of realtors in the city, and then officially list on the home on the MLS the next day. She asked us to set aside two evenings where she could show the home and between the 2 nights I believe she had 18 showings. Within 48 hours we had 6 offers on the condo and we sold our place for 26K over asking! It is because of Karen’s knowledge, experience, and connections in the market that we were able to sell our home so quickly with minimal inconvenience to us. We loved working with Karen and can’t thank her enough for all her help!
We bought and sold our condo, and later bought our “forever” house with the help of Karen and Lou. We sold in a buyers’ market, and bought in a sellers’ market, and definitely couldn’t have done it without them! Every time something unexpected came up, their experience was crucial to keeping the sale on track. They are quick to respond to questions and were able to provide lots of advice both before and after the sale. I highly recommend Karen and Lou.
– Clare and Scott Fauke
Karen Breen Elia is absolutely the best! My grandmother referred me to Lou and Karen because I was trying to sell my home and was not happy with the real estate agent who sold my home to me.
Upon meeting them, they were very warm and down-to-earth, which made me feel comfortable, as this was my first experience in selling a house. Karen was very compassionate as I was also going through a difficult time, grieving from the recent loss of my fiancé. Even though I was her client, she made me feel like a close friend.
As Karen was determined to help me, she explained my options in detail and provided me with the necessary steps to sell as quickly as possible for the best price. The pictures that were taken of my home and the listing description were amazing. I was very pleased with the professionalism of the listing.
Karen was always in communication with me and kept me informed about the showings and offers. She was very accommodating to my work schedule and provided excellent advice on the offers received.
We closed on the sale of my property in April 2015. My expectations were exceeded by Karen’s diligence and I can’t thank her enough. I will definitely tell everyone I know who is in the market to buy or sell a home about my wonderful experience with Karen Breen Elia, Lou Elia and.
– Kimberly Spears
“Karen was always one step ahead of everyone else…”
When I embarked on the monumental task of exchanging my small condo for more living space, I thought the process would be complicated and stressful. Placing your home on the market while simultaneously trying to find a new place to hang your hat seemed like a daunting task. Thankfully I had Karen Breen Elia and Lou Elia on my side. As someone who is used to doing things on her own, I had never before realized how empowering it can be to have advocates on your side with the expertise and savvy to make the process as easy as pie.
Lou and Karen are the loveliest people I’ve ever met, but more importantly they are geniuses when it comes to real estate. They helped me and my wife sell our condo and purchase a new one in a few short months. Karen and Lou listened to our requirements and offered sage advice and suggestions for selling our home. Karen was always in close contact, keeping me updated on showings and feedback. Her marketing techniques are second to none. When showings slowed down she immediately engaged in an email campaign to promote our condo. Karen has strong connections in the real estate community and was able to tackle issues and problems that arose throughout the sometimes complicated selling process. In fact, Karen was always one step ahead of everyone else and so was able to deal with issues quickly and efficiently.
Karen and Lou are the perfect team. I never felt like a client, but like family. Lou was invaluable in our search for a new condo. He happily accompanied me and my wife to countless showings even in snowy conditions and was sure to get our feedback afterward. When we were ready to buy, both Lou and Karen jumped into action to ensure that we put forward the best offer possible and continued to work with the seller’s agent to make sure everything was done to our satisfaction. She also connected us with an excellent inspection service and continued to offer advice and suggestions as we negotiated our new purchase. Karen and Lou are simply the best advocates you can have in real estate. They know how to get things done, anticipate issues and problems, and then deal with them to produce the best outcome for their clients. I would recommend Karen and Lou to anyone looking to sell or buy in the Chicagoland area. There is simply no one else I would use.
– Rosibel O’Brien-Cruz
“She knows Chicago’s neighborhoods inside and out…”
Karen is an incredible Realtor with an experience level that is really hard to come by. She knows Chicago’s neighborhoods inside and out and provides insightful and useful advice that helps a homebuyer or seller understand the market. That ability has made Karen one of Chicago’s best Realtors for multiple decades.
I have used Karen for her services personally and professionally for nearly 20 years. I have worked with hundreds of her clients and I can attest that I have never heard one complaint about the service she and Lou provide. They are available, they listen, and most importantly they truly do care about their clients. I have seen them sacrifice significantly over the years to go the extra mile. That’s why their business is built on referrals and has kept them among the best of the best for years in Chicago.
– David Kasprisin, Branch Manager Wintrust Mortgage
“Did an excellent job”
Karen did an excellent job selling my two flat. She priced it well and did an amazing job negotiating multiple offers to get me the best price possible in the current market. She also kept on top of details after negotiations.
– Sarah Schloff
“Karen is a superstar”
Karen is a superstar. She had multiple showings of our property within a day or two of its initial listing. She kept us informed at every step and demonstrated great knowledge of the market, in this case multiple family dwellings. She further assisted us in the negotiation process as well. When financing fell through on an initial offer, Karen got right back into the game and once again showed the property multiple times within a day or two of re-listing. The property ultimately sold after getting multiple offers, including an offer at asking price and a financed offer at above asking price. Job well done Karen!”
– Paul Chevlin
Thank you for helping us find a buyer for our home!
I used several realtors over the years and none of them gave my place the needed personal attention that you did, which yielded an actual offer. Looking forward to completing this journey that we’re on to selling my place and onto the journey of finding a new home!
– Harriet Brillakis Senese
“Sold a ‘tough to sell’ property in a tough market”
CCH knows the Chicago market like no other real estate company. Karen is an excellent communicator and has her thumb on the pulse of the market at all times. She works nonstop and her main focus is selling her client’s property. Karen sold a ‘tough to sell’ property in a tough market. Three words that come to mind when I think of Karen are, thorough, communicative and professional. The service Karen provided cannot be improved upon and I will be referring Karen to my family and friends.
– Jennifer Tobits & Jo Ann Ugolini
“Karen did it for me and she can do it for you”
Due to a death in my family I became responsible to sell a condo on the near north side of Chicago. Since I know very little about all the details of selling a condo, I turned to a friend of mine, Karen Breen Elia, who I felt would represent me in a professional manner. Her office was just a few blocks from the condo and she had recently sold a similar condo across the street. She certainly knew the area which was a real positive. We were not getting much response from the buyer’s attorney. Things were moving way too slow for Karen and the buyer’s broker. The turning point in the sale is when Karen asked me if she and the buyer’s broker could work out all the details to agree on a price. I told her “go for it”. In less than a week we had a price, pictures taken, and a showing which resulted in 3 bids with the first one buying the property for $2,500 more than what it was listed for. Karen is a “take charge” type of person who kept me informed by copying me on every email and by phone if something had to be discussed. It was a very good experience and I would highly recommend Karen to anyone who is looking for a broker to handle all the details of which there are many. Whether you are buying or selling, getting the price you want in a timely manner is really all we care about. Karen did it for me and she can do it for you.
– Roger Rowe
“The best experience I have ever had with a real estate agent…”
This was without a doubt the best experience I have ever had with a real estate agent. (and we were not easy customers) I was selling a condo for my aunt who had gone into assisted living. The transaction was taking place long distance and the condo was in horrible condition. Karen took care of everything. I thought that the sale would be at a loss, and she sold it quickly and at a profit. I honestly didn’t quite believe her when she assured me that she would be able to sell the condo quickly and for a price that was greater than I expected. She did exactly what she said, and it was completely hassle free. She was professional, available,and made sure that I did what I was supposed to do. She did everything that was necessary to make the sale happen. I am very grateful.
– Andrea Zucker
Karen and Lou managed to sell our Logan Square two flat in a depressed economy and for a great price. This didn’t happen by serendipity – they worked hard for us for many months nonstop. I know they had many more clients, but whenever we communicated about their listing of our place, they made us feel as if we were the only clients they had and that they valued our business above all. They prepped us well so that our expectations were based on market analysis instead of our own ideas. They kept the potential buyers coming and were always on top of things. A 100+ year old building is always a work in progress, and Karen & Lou helped us decide what would be an effective way to improve the property while it was listed versus what was a rather wasted expense. Service doesn’t get any better than this!
– Susan Teller Marshall
I had almost given up hope of selling my condominium when Karen Breen Elia of Chicago City Homes came along. I was an out-of-state owner, and trying to sell property long-distance was a difficult matter. Karen’s knowledge of real estate in general and the local market in particular enabled me to seal the deal. She is a professional, friendly, and hard-working broker who takes a personal interest in the buyer and the buyer’s needs and wishes. I felt as though I had known her for a long time. Not only did she do her job well, she went beyond expected in terms of service, handling many small details so that I wouldn’t have to travel to get the job done. I would not hesitate to recommend Karen Breen Elia to anyone wishing to buy or sell property. Thank you!
– Ruth Zurich
Karen knows the Chicago market very well, and between her and Lou, they have a strong handle on the different neighborhoods, where the best values and deals can be found and which ones align the best to what you are looking for. They both made themselves readily available, they were very patient and overall a great experience working with both of them.
– Mazen Ghalayini
We had the pleasure of working with Karen & Lou hunting for a single-family home in Chicago last year after my sister-in-law recommended them.. They were both so genuine & truly made the entire process so easy for us. We were first time buyers, so it was a learning experience for us as well. Karen really took her time educating us about the whole process, the various neighborhoods, & helped us find that perfect property. We’ve recently celebrated one year in our new home & couldn’t be happier. If you’re in the market to buy or sell, do yourself a favor & contact Karen at Chicago City Homes.
– Phillip Lowe
“They will stick with you to the end.”
Karen and Lou guided us (and stuck with us) through several offers, changed priorities, and sticky summer house hunting, eventually finding our dream home. They were very helpful, organized, attentive, and thoughtful through the whole process.
– April Shapiro Check