What are the top factors to keep in mind when searching for a place to live in your city?

It is important to select a neighborhood that suits your lifestyle. Most people consider proximity to work, school and friends. Neighborhood characteristics, amenities, type of accommodation and price are also important.
↑ Top

What are the most popular neighborhoods in your city for expats?

Chicago's neighborhoods are rich in history. Renowned for their vintage architecture, they offer a diversity of urban living.

  • Gold Coast (North of downtown to North Avenue, and west from the lakefront to Clark Street) --This is one of Chicago's most prominent neighborhoods. The city's most luxurious high-rise apartments and landmark mansions are situated here, along with the finest restaurants and shopping. Single-family homes are sometimes available, however chances are you will either rent or purchase a condo. Many residents do not own cars, as just about everything is within walking distance.

  • Lincoln Park (North of Armitage Avenue to Diversey Avenue, and west of Lincoln Park to Halsted Street) -- ITs peaceful charm draws many young professionals and families with children to this neighborhood. There is easy access to transportation, shopping, parks and dining. Lincoln Park offers a mix of mansions, town houses, and Victorian three-flats on its tree-lined streets. There are also high-rise apartments overlooking the Park.

  • Lakeview (North of Diversey Avenue to Irving Park Road, and west from the Lake to Ravenswood Avenue) -- Although a densely populated neighborhood, Lakeview is an alternative to the expensive housing costs of the Gold Coast and Lincoln Park. During the summer months, baseball fans gather at various rooftops overlooking Wrigley Field to watch their favorite home team, the Chicago Cubs.

  • Bucktown (Centered around the Damen Avenue, North Avenue and Milwaukee Avenue intersection) -- Young people looking for convenience and value in a city neighborhood have been attracted to Bucktown, which provides easy access to the Kennedy Expressway, Metra Train stop and the Blue Line "L" to the Loop and O'Hare. The neighborhood has undergone recent redevelopment with new single-family, town home construction and condo conversions. Bucktown is one of the trendier, eclectic areas of Chicago known for a diverse mix of restaurants, art galleries and boutiques.

  • Evanston (Borders Chicago to the North) -- Located just 11 miles north of downtown Chicago and situated along the shores of Lake Michigan, Evanston offers everything a suburban dweller could want without sacrificing urban ambiance. It blends the best of city and suburb. Home to Northwestern University, Evanston is a university town and prides itself on its theater groups, symphony orchestra, museums and art centers. It offers a wide range of housing options, including vintage Victorians and Colonials, ranches, bungalows, condominiums and apartments.

It is worth noting that many expats with children prefer to live in Chicago's suburbs. Here, you can find a more residential atmosphere, quiet streets and affordable schooling options.
↑ Top

Do expats tend to buy or rent their homes?

Check your company's relocation policy. Expats typically rent during short term assignments and consider buying a house if their stay extends beyond three years.
↑ Top

Typically, will I be required to pay additional money up front (such as a deposit) before moving into leased housing? If so, how much is common?

You will be required to pay your first month's rent, plus a deposit equal to one month's rent or more. The landlord will refund the deposit plus interest provided the apartment is left in its original condition when you move out.
↑ Top

Are utilities generally included in the price of rent, or are they extra?

It is important to check with your landlord, as this varies from building to building. Generally, water and trash removal are the landlord's responsibility and are included in the price of the rent. You can expect to pay the following utilities if they are not included: gas, electric, phone and cable. Gas and electric bills vary, depending on the size of your home, time of year and usage. The previous tenant can confirm his or her approximate monthly payments.

While renting, it is a good idea to purchase renter's insurance. Renter's insurance protects your goods against theft and fire. Monthly premiums are typically inexpensive. Contact your local insurance agent.
↑ Top

Are there special security concerns I should be aware of in regards to my home or choice of neighborhood?

As in larger cities, some areas are more desirable than others. Check with friends, colleagues, a real estate professional and Crown Chicago prior to deciding on a certain neighborhood.
↑ Top

I’m not sure if I should bring my appliances. What is the electric current, Hz and plug shape in your city?

The electric current in the United States is 110 volts. The electrical Hertz (Hz) is 60.

Do note: It is not recommended that you bring appliances from overseas. Although there are converters available, the appliance will probably not function properly.

Below are examples of the types of plugs that are used in the U.S.:

Type A - Flat blade attachment plug

Type B - Flat blades with round grounding pin

↑ Top

Do you have any other accommodation information that might help me?

Please contact Crown Chicago with specific questions regarding accommodation.
↑ Top


Crown Relocations has made every effort to present accurate information. However, regulations, rates and other variables are subject to change and Crown Relocations cannot accept responsibility for the errors that might result. Should you have any questions or need additional information, please contact your local Crown representative.