WOODLAWN- The Renew Woodlawn Homeownership Program is transforming Woodlawn into Chicago’s destination for urban living.

Community members and local politicians celebrated the first home closing under the program on May 14. Renew Woodlawn provides incentives such as grants and down payments for homeowners interested in buying and redeveloping Woodlawn properties.

The community effort comes amid greater interest in the neighborhood, which features historic architecture at affordable prices says Hasani Steele, who attended the ceremony. The RE/MAX broker and CEO of Steele Consulting Group has the most listings in the neighborhood according to real estate website Zillow.

“Renew Woodlawn lets people know, now is the time to buy and make great appreciation in the homes you purchase,” says Steele. “Woodlawn is very fertile for growth.”

Alderman Cochran at Renew Woodlawn
Ald. Willie Cochran (20th Ward) speaks at the kickoff event for Renew Woodlawn, a homeownership program.

Three Chicago nonprofits partnered with the Chicago Department of Planning and Development on Renew Woodlawn. Funding comes from the federal government and the City of Chicago.

The program plans to help 20 prospective homebuyers in Woodlawn by the end of 2017. With its lakeside location, proximity to U. of C. and green space, Woodlawn has great potential, says Kristen Faust, president and CEO of Neighborhood Housing Services, a Renew Woodlawn partner.

“You can’t find a neighborhood with a higher potential upside than Woodlawn,” says Faust.

Steele Consulting partners with developers to restore the beauty and integrity of Woodlawn homes. Steele Consulting and Premium Builder’s Fourth Phase of “Renaissance on Kimbark” condominium project (6457 South Kimbark Ave.) was the 2011 winner of the Bruce Abrams Award, the highest achievement in the annual Good Neighbor Awards ceremony.

“The South Side still has all the charm it was once known for,” says Steele whose Woodlawn developments include several landmark rehabs. “Renew Woodlawn is a challenge to renew our vision of the community and help Woodlawn surpass its greatest days.”

Steele Consulting Group works with developers to provide real estate services from conception/design and development to pre-sales. They strive to be experts on understanding what buyers want and effectively bring these desires to market.