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If you are considering Barrington as a place to call home you might ask what the definition is of a country suburban home. Before we give the definition it also applies to homes in Deer Park, Inverness, Long Grove, Kildeer and Hawthorn Woods because they are very similar. We serve homes in all these areas as buyers often consider them all side by side.There are other suburbs in the Chicago area that are classed country suburban. St Charles and many of the suburbs west of The Fox River.
The picture below shows a country suburban subdivision of South Barrington with a medium sized lake in the center. Each lot is just over 1.5 acres.
What Makes a Suburb a Country Suburb?
Chicagoland is a big place with a lot of housing. Many of the towns and villages that make up the suburbs have homes on standard builder sized lots, about 10,000 square feet. These are known as bedroom communities in the suburbs.There are areas where the lot sizes are bigger and also smaller. Whichever way you look at these homes they are close together and usually in some type of planned unit neighborhood.
The urban sprawl of Chicagoland goes a long way out and extends into rural areas too. Our country suburban communities are really a mixture of both urban and rural and we came up with the definition based on the make up of the village.
Country suburbs are still within the area we know as chicagoland but the homes are set on 1 or more acres of land. Every subdivision will have homes on similar sized lots. For example Lake Barrington, North Barrington and South Barrington homes are typically 1 to 2 acre lot sizes. Barrington Hills average lot is 5 acres but can go as high as 100.
The Country suburbs do not have large commercial areas within. You might find small strip malls on the outskirts and Doctors offices etc but no large shopping malls in the middle. For shopping malls, car dealerships and office complexes you’ll need to look in the center of Barrington or on the perimeter of each country village or in areas like Schaumburg or Libertyville which have a lot of commerce areas, and therefore are employment bases.
Country suburban villages appear like the country but residents do not need to go far to find infrastructure for daily living. Fences are not allowed, paddock fencing is allowed on horse property but not solid fences anywhere. You’ll find homes on acres with trees. As new subdivisions were built there was always a requirement to plant trees and if they die the home owners associations wants them replaced. Both Lake Barrington and North Barrington are classed as tree cities. You may need to seek permission to remove trees.
There are also a lot of small lakes and ponds. This is partly for helping the fire department with a close water supply as country suburbs do not have many hydrants. There are plenty of conservation areas, walking trails, parks inside the communities and also each village. There is a lot of green! The photo below shows a typical country suburban home in Lake Barrington. Backing up to conservation and set on 2+ acres, there’s nothing in sight behind the home except trees and green. There is a creek back there too called Flint Creek. A nice view for sure!
Homes on an acre or more are typically on well and septic systems for water and house waste. Only a few subdivisions have tapped into city water and sewer. The Village of Barrington is more like a bedroom community than country suburb. Homes are closer together and the village has water supply and sewers, albeit that they are quietly aging!
What Kinds of Homes Are There in The Country Suburbs?
- Mid Century Modern
- New construction
What you won’t find are Victorian, Queen Anne or other older style homes, those are limited to the Village of Barrington and the center of town. You might find old country farm houses especially in Barrington Hills and Unincorporated Barrington.
There are also limited horse ranches. Many of the homes on 5 or more acres have barns, stables, arenas of varying sizes. Most 5 acre properties are zoned equestrian.
In other words quite the variety to choose from!
Premium Location For Homes in Country Suburban Subdivisions
There are three general locations for homes in any subdivision.
- Interior lots. These are where homes generally have other homes behind them.
- Exterior lots. May have other buildings behind them or roads.
- Premium exterior lots. Backing up to conservation or lakes, creeks, rivers.
The premium lots will always have cost more when a subdivision was sold to buyers. Most appraisers will add additional value to a premium lot location and generally they sell much better than exterior lots that back up to a road.
Whether buying new or a re-sale home, choose your lot location wisely!
What Are Not Really Country Suburbs?
There are bedroom communities that have some small areas with homes on acre lots. Palatine is a good example of this. Yet it’s not really a country suburb just because one or two subdivisions have the larger lot sizes. The idea is the entire community has homes on acre lots or larger.
Maintaining The Country Suburban Atmosphere.
Although we do not have a lot of land left in the country Barrington area, the villages maintain the country suburban feel of these communities by making sure the general makeup of acre+ lots is not changed. Any new subdivisions must adhere to the average acre sized lots. Townhome communities are limited and they must be built to appear similar for the village.
If you are a landowner you cannot subdivide to create lot sizes that do not conform to the village. For example if you own 25 acres in Barrington Hills, you may be able to subdivide into 5×5 acre lots, but not to 50 1/2 acre lots or 100 1/4 acre lots.
Is The Country Suburban Style of Living For You?
What can you do in the country suburbs of Barrington?
One of the great advantages of owning a lot of an acre or more is the play area you have. Great for kids to play soccer or fly a kite. Perfect to add swimming pools but be sure your subdivision allows them and know that above ground pools are generally not permitted.I have seen half court sports courts too! Your backyard is large so add a firepit, patio, expand your outdoor living space to include a summer cooking area. You can even have a wedding in your yard!
If you have a dog, like we do, then having a large yard gives fido a place to run. Most dogs need exercise every day and sometimes the 30-60 minute walk every single day can get to be a drag, especially when it’s cold and wet or snowy. A 20 minute run in a large back yard provides an equivalent amount of exercise to a very long walk. Our Golden Retriever loves his weekday runs in the yard. He is well trained and we can get him running for an entire 20 minutes, we just take away his balls etc and tell him go, go, go. He stops for birds of course but soon gets going again.
He’s happy to go out in the rain by himself too. He is well trained so we’re not worried about him, he always comes when asked. Then he has a place to dry!
If you like gardening there’s space for plenty of trees, bushes even a place for a veggie patch. Beyond your yard you can explore the hiking trails. Barrington Hills has a riding club, a polo field and of course we have several golf clubs both private and public. It’s not far to the nearest theater, there are several bowling alleys, shopping malls, sports arenas.
Country suburban living is the best of both worlds, large lots, close to shops, transport, leisure. (Unless you hate large lots in which case contact me for other choices within Barrington!)