The Real Group Team at Baird & Warner is thrilled to congratulate Marc Dumas, Kenneth Arrizola, and Jason Finn for being named as “Five Star Professional” award winners for 2020!

This is an enormous honor! Five Star’s research and review standards are incredibly high, and only the very top real estate agents in a market are awarded this coveted title. For Jason, this marks the record-setting tenth year of earning the Five Star Professional award; he has been recognized each year since 2011, Five Star’s first year evaluating professionals in Chicago. Kenneth’s mantle is getting crowded as well, as he adds yet another award to his virtual display case. Marc was previously named a Five Star Professional Rising Star for 2017, and receives the established Five Star Real Estate Agent recognition for the 2nd year in a row. 

Five Star Professional is a research firm based upon the idea of helping consumers find the very best service professionals in their area. The “Five Star Professional” title is awarded to real estate agents who have demonstrated an unparalleled commitment to professional excellence in their local markets. Winners are selected for their integrity, communication skills, and customer service, as recognized by their clients and industry peers.



There’s a very common report that gets passed around in real estate circles, known as the “Cost Vs. Value” report. This metric weighs the price of a home renovation or update against the value that it adds to a home, and it’s largely taken for gospel by many, including homeowners, real estate professionals, and even contractors.

One big thing that the Cost Vs. Value report tends to show, year to year, is that there aren’t really any projects that generate an average positive return on investment. Is this really true? Are home improvements actually far more likely to cost more than they’re worth? If that’s the case, why would anyone undertake any home improvement projects, knowing that they’re just throwing money down the drain? Is there any way to add value to your home?

While the Cost Vs. Value report is thoroughly reported and a great benchmark for professionals – drawn as it is from National Association of Realtors and RemodelMax data – it isn’t immune from criticism. One exceptional article on this matter comes to us from the blog at Kayu Connection. In it, the author points to a number of ways in which the Cost Vs. Value report can be misleading, and how home improvement projects actually can improve the resale process in the long run.

The blogger’s points, in fact, reinforce a lot of the views that we’ve held here at Real Group. It’s time for the real story on home improvement projects and resale value:

1.) What’s the Motivation Behind the Project?


While we all have our personal style when it comes to decorating and designing our homes, there are features that potential buyers tend to look out for when choosing their next house.

For instance, Realtor.com says that 80% of home buyers of all ages think of the kitchen as one of their three favorite rooms to use in a home.

When selling your home, choosing to modify the most used spaces and rooms, including the kitchen, might just help you appeal to a wide range of buyers. According to a report completed by Remodeling, when homeowners complete smaller renovations they’ll be able to recoup 81.1% of the cost, while major remodels come in at 59%.

There are often small fixes, like updating the hardware on your cabinets or choosing a newer backsplashes, that can draw in buyers and make your property stand out. Larger fixes like replacing old appliances or changing a layout may seem like a large investment, but they can also help to create the dream kitchen that buyers want.

Explore this quiet, sophisticated 3-level corner brick/limestone townhome located within the private interior of a Roscoe Village courtyard. The home features four bedrooms, including three upstairs, and a separated bedroom or office with en suite bathroom on the first floor, off the marble entry foyer. You'll find many fine touches throughout the home, including double crown molding, wainscoting, and large windows with louvered shutters in the living area. The home is wired for sound throughout. The kitchen features Bosch and GE Profile stainless steel appliances, granite countertops, white cabinets, and marble flooring. Eat at the kitchen peninsula, or move the party into the spacious adjacent dining room. The home offers three wonderful outdoor spaces: a safe and private courtyard patio; a welcoming and warm deck off of the living room with space to grill and entertain; and a large rooftop deck with 360-degree views and a built-in pergola-topped bar, television mount, and ample seating for entertaining. The primary bedroom features dual custom closets with built-in shelving and an en suite bathroom featuring a jetted tub, marble shower, dual vanities, skylight, and separate water closet. The convenient Roscoe Village location is incredibly quiet, while still placing you close to the Addison Brown Line L station, several CPS Level 1+ schools, Trader Joe's, and the best that Roscoe Street and the Southport Corridor have to offer.

Floor plans are available for download here

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2526 N Lincoln Ave
Chicago, IL 60614

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