A Greener Way to Search for Chicago Real Estate

May 15, 2011

Here’s an interesting approach to house hunting.

A local Chicago real estate agency is encouraging home buyers to get out of their cars and onto their bikes while searching for homes around Chicagoland.

StartingPoint Realty, which works primarily with first-time home buyers, is even offering an incentive to search for a home via bike — in addition to the obvious benefits to the environment and your waistline.

guy biking along lake michiganWhen a home buyer spends at least two days biking with StartingPoint Realty instead of in a car in the “Bike Your Home Search,” that buyer will get a $250 gift card to a local bike shop when they close on a home.

“Absolutely nothing good comes from sitting in traffic and burning through gas. I thought if we promoted bike riding between homes, it would be a win-win. We can get around faster and get a better feel for neighborhoods while enjoying a workout that doesn’t increase our carbon footprint,” says StartingPoint Realty owner Ryan Gable.

House hunters need to provide their own bike, helmet and water.

“We provide the locks and we carry all the listing sheets, camera, and note pads in a backpack,” said Gable. “The idea is to make it fun, not a hassle for the client.”

Chicago is known for its biking paths. The city recently ranked No. 10 on a list of top 50 bicycle-riding cities by Bicycle Magazine, and officials are consistently making improvements to encourage this healthy mode of transportation.

Gable said that StartingPoint Realty is the only agency in the Chicago area that focuses solely on the first-time home buyer market, so as a result, the group has the lowdown on first-time home buyer programs in the area and also offers free first-time home buyer seminars throughout Chicago and its surrounding suburbs.

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