Market Watch: Thomas Easton loses almost $1 million on mid-century Lake Forest home
Illinois' highest-in-the-nation property taxes are eroding home equity and depressing home values across the state. This report is part of a SYHN News Service series on recent home sales that demonstrate the consequences.
The home: 1711 Devonshire Lane, Lake Forest
The 4,279-square-foot home has four bedrooms and four baths on 2.7 acres. The home was built in 1948. It was designed by modernist architects Keck & Keck; and according to Lake Forest Preservation Foundation board members is "one of Lake Forest's most architecturally significant examples of mid-century modern design," according to an article in the Chicago Tribune.
The structure, however, has seen better times and was listed as a possible demolition project at one point.
The seller: Thomas Easton
The purchase: In February 2007, Easton paid $1.16 million for the home, or $1.43 million in today's dollars, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The sale: According to Zillow, Easton sold the home for $500,000 on Jan. 31, or $930,000 less than the original purchase price, in today's dollars.
Easton, who had purchased the home with the goal of restoring it to its original modernist glory, said health issues prevented him from doing so. Instead, he listed the home for sale in June 2015 for $799,900. By Feb. 1, 2016, he had lowered the price to $769,000. He dropped the price numerous other times until he finally took the home off the market in February 2018 with the house priced at $649,000.
He put the house back on the market on Aug. 7, 2018, priced at $649,000. He dropped the price three weeks later to $595,000 and again on Nov. 3 to $549,000.
The property taxes: Based on data compiled from Blockshopper.com and Zillow, Easton paid $123,835 in property taxes between 2008 and 2017, or 25 percent of the sale price.
The Financial Facts in Today’s Dollars
|Seller's Purchase Price||Amount Home Sold for in 2019||Seller's Property Taxes|