During a three-month period, Sara and Jeff Stone looked at 100 potential places to live before they chose to settle in the Canterbury Fields subdivision on the far west side of Hoffman Estates.
"I'm very picky," Jeff Stone said. Being tenacious paid off for the couple. They like the layout of their townhouse and the subdivision's easy living.
Listing sheetPrice range: $220,000 to $250,000
Age of homes: 8 to 11 years
Schools: Lincoln Elementary, Larsen Middle and Elgin High schools in school district U-46
Parks: Hoffman Estates Park District
"We've been here three years," Stone said. "It's a nice neighborhood."
It's also a friendly neighborhood with a lot of kids playing outside and people out walking and biking. Stone enjoys being outside with the couple's young daughter as well as taking his golden lab, Leo, out for walks.
With Sara and Jeff both commuting to their jobs, living right next to the Beverly Road exit and two minutes from I-90 is a real plus for the couple.
Located on Shoe Factory Road west of Beverly, Canterbury Fields features four townhouses per building, which adds to the community's upscale appearance.
Townhouses built by Ryan Homes in the early 2000s offer five designs with 1,500 and 1,850 square feet, two and three bedrooms, one to 2½ baths and attached two-car garage. Larger homes feature basements, and some have finished basements.
These townhouses are new enough to have current amenities such as two-story great rooms, second-floor laundry and kitchens with nice cabinetry, granite countertops and stainless steel appliances, said Brian Wolf, broker associate with RE/MAX at Home.
"This is a nice, self-contained community," Wolf said. "The Hoffman Estates address offers good value for the money; for the same layout and square footage in Arlington Heights, you would probably pay $285,000."
The community also has great curb appeal. The association takes good care of the amenities and grounds, and it's very well done, Stone said. A reasonable association fee covers exterior maintenance, lawn care and snow removal.
Wolf is marketing a two-bedroom townhouse with a loft. This bonus space could be used as an office or sitting area or even converted to a third bedroom, if buyers desire, Wolf said.
Residents of the community enjoy an abundance of recreation. North of the subdivision, the 15-acre Canterbury Fields Park offers many amenities including a trail, playground, soccer fields, cricket pitch, open-air shelter and restrooms.
Other amenities include all the offerings of the Hoffman Estates Park District, which includes the popular Seascape Family Aquatic Center, summer concerts at the beautiful gazebo at the Bridge of Poplar Creek Country Club, dog and skate parks, ice arena and more.
The Poplar Creek Forest Preserve offers several trails for hiking and biking, beautiful vistas, varied land, pond, large open spaces and picnic areas. This is a great haven to experience some quiet time away from the surrounding busyness.
Sara and Jeff Stone enjoy the shopping and nice restaurants at The Arboretum of South Barrington, an upscale shopping mall that also includes a movie theater.
Buyers seeking the open space of the far West suburbs need go only as far as Hoffman Estates. More than one-third of the village is dedicated to forest preserves, including two major preserves with biking and walking trails, and there's an abundance of open space with lots of recreation.
Once known as a bedroom community, the village has become a major corporate center with an emerging entertainment and shopping district.