Second homes bring out different sides of owners

In February, New Homes Magazine will profile several new pieds-a-terre available in Chicago. Over the weekend, Chuck Green reported in the Tribune on trends in the second-home market, including the reasons why people buy vacation- and investment-homes.

Many of the people Greene interviewed wanted second homes where they could “indulge” in their hobbies or adopt new personalities.

“It’s totally an escape for me,” Linda Alpert said of her North Side retreat from her primary residence, a Deerfield townhouse. “Sometimes I come downtown on a Thursday night and stay through Sunday. It’s just like my little place that I call my own, where I can cuddle up and be very comfortable and warm. It’s more relaxed; people don’t call me on the phone there. It’s my little hideaway, so speak. A lot of people don’t even know we have it.”

Alpert noted that, “psychologically,” her second home is a totally different place than her Deerfield townhouse.

Second-home sales accounted for 36 percent of all existing and new residential transactions in 2006. Most buyers are married couples in their 50s, according to a National Association of Realtors report cited in Green’s article.

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