Ecodwell specializes in new construction homes. Get designs that work with standard Chicago lots - maximizing space, light and storage.
You want durable craftsmanship that will last a lifetime? Our crew of contractors, architects, interior designers and experts provide quality through every phase of construction. And our long-established familiarly of city codes and zoning ensures efficient results from start to finish.
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Benefits of energy-efficient and environmentally-friendly home building:
Single-Family Home - A single-family or detached home is a free-standing residence, usually built on a private lot where it is the sole domestic facility. Detached homeowners pay property taxes and may or may not have to contribute to a home owner’s association with monthly dues. The monthly association fees normally go toward general upkeep of the surrounding subdivision or other communal aspects. The main benefits of single-family homes are: increased privacy, more yard space, easier to add-on than attached residences (such as condos or townhouses). The disadvantages of living in detached homes are: maintenance is the homeowner’s responsibility, regular yard work is required, and all repairs are out-of-pocket expenses.
Within the single-family home category, there are many different styles of houses (e.g. ranch, bungalow, Colonial, Cape Cod, villa, mansion, split-level, etc). In building a new construction home you have the freedom to choose whatever style of architecture and design you want. The size of your house, however, may be restricted by zoning codes that determine what percentage of the lot can be used for structure.
Townhouse - A townhouse or townhome is an attached residence where the units share common walls but do not have units above or below them. They are usually positioned in a row and may include several units exactly alike or variations of similar-looking residences. Generally, a townhouse has multiple levels and a decidedly vertical floor plan. Townhomes may be part of a large complex or a smaller development with just a few units.
Common grounds (i.e. drives, courtyards, landscaped walkways, swimming pools, and other communal amenities) are shard by all residents of the townhomes and are maintained by funds contributed to the townhome association each month by the individual unit owners. A board is elected to collect and manage the funds for general upkeep and special projects as needed. There are also rules and regulations for the townhome development that owners must abide by (or vote to change). The guidelines are upheld by the association and are instated to help preserve uniformity among units.
Usually townhome associations have policies about the exterior appearance of individual townhomes that limit changes to the façade of the residences. Requests to make alterations have to be approved by the board. In most cases, major home improvement projects like remodeling or adding a roof deck will also require the consent of the board.
Condominiums - A condominium is a residential building or complex where individual units are owned separately. Each condo is the property of the homeowner while common areas (such as hallways, lobbies, outdoor grounds, parking garage, exercise room, rooftop deck, etc) are owned by the condo as a whole. All condo owners contribute assessments (monthly fees) to the condo association, which is the governing body for the entire condo building. The assessments are used for regular maintenance and expenses with any leftover money going into the “reserves” for use at a later date. The amount a condo owner pays in monthly assessments is generally dependent on the number of units in the condo association, the type of amenities the condo building or complex has, and how much is needed for everyday upkeep.
In cities like Chicago there is a large inventory of condominiums. New construction condos vary greatly from one to the next. In the Loop, many of the recently completed condos are high-rise residences in a full-service building. These often offer 24-hour doormen, on-site parking, workout facilities, cleaners, dog runs, club houses, landscaped gardens or terraces, business centers, bike rooms, and additional storage. As you move further away from downtown there are a lot of three-flat condos on neighborhood streets and mid-rise developments with modern finishes.
Typically, larger scale new construction condo complexes offer more amenities and high-tech conveniences. However, this can lead to higher monthly assessments and stricter rules and regulations. Intimate boutique condos tend to have fewer communal facilities and therefore less costs incurred to run the building. In some cases, the number of condo owners is small enough that the association is self-managed.
Duplexes - A duplex is either a stand-alone house with two side-by-side residences owned by two different parties; or a condo unit with two stories owned by one party. For the purposes of discussing new construction housing in the city, we’ll focus on the latter.
A duplex condo with one floor on the lowest level of a building is referred to as a “duplex down” and if it has one floor on the top level it is called a “duplex up.” Duplexes in condos are still subject to association dues and are treated as a single unit. In a duplex up you get all high-floor living space, while in a duplex down half of the square footage is in the basement. However, a duplex down will stay cooler in the summer and has easy access to the outside.
Many new construction residential low-rises in Chicago include duplexes in their designs. Instead of all single-level condos, the layouts are being built with one duplex up and one duplex down. Some have lofted floor plans where the upper floor is open to the lower story. Most have both a living room and family room, which is much appreciated additional space for urban families.
Lofts - For all intents and purposes, a loft is a condo—only it has a particular style and special elements of design. Like a condo, lofts are governed by an association. Individual loft owners pay monthly dues to the association, which are used for standard upkeep of the loft building. Lofts are typically identified by the open division of living space. A traditional loft is one large area segmented with partitions and non-permanent walls. It is common for the mechanicals (such as piping and ductwork) to be exposed along the ceiling. Interior brick walls are also a universal loft feature, plus large expanses of windows.
Lofts were originally converted from old warehouses, so new construction lofts have been designed to resemble that distinctive industrial look. The exteriors often incorporate brick and steel, with generous glass exposures. Because outdoor space is in such high demand in the city, private balconies have become an important part of the average loft-style residence. Sliding glass doors open out to metal balconies suspended from the outer wall of the building. Many of the recently constructed lofts also have extra amenities in the building. Everything from exercise rooms to rooftop sundecks have been added to the architectural blue prints.
"We view every project as a priority. You can trust that jobs as small as painting a single room are treated with the same care and craftsmanship as new home construction."