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Urban vs. Suburban Commercial Real Estate Investment – What’s Best for You?

Published on March 4th, 2020

One of the many interesting and complex parts of commercial real estate investing is the variety of options available. When commercial real estate brokers in Chicago need to decide which route to take, the age-old argument tends to revolve around whether urban or suburban is the smarter play. This argument is driven by fluctuations in generational factors, consumer habits, and different costs. We are breaking down some of the pros and cons of investing in each area.

Urban Commercial Real Estate Investing

Due to its location and the ever-changing and growing nature of many cities, including Chicago, urban commercial real estate will no doubt always be a popular investment choice for commercial real estate brokers in Chicago. One of the big factors affecting this choice for many investors is the higher concentration of people than in suburban areas. Like suburban investing, there are many pros and cons to investing in commercial real estate in the city:


  • There’s significant foot traffic.
  • Businesses, public transportation, and other amenities and attractions are often nearby.
  • The types of properties vary greatly in the city.
  • In the majority of cases, there’s a larger pool of potential tenants.


  • Costs such as taxes, fees, and utilities can be higher than in the suburbs.
  • Properties can often be older or more run-down.
  • Your dollar does not reach as far, and there’s not as much space for new development.
  • There are higher crime rates.

Should you decide to invest in commercial real estate in the city, contact Frontline Real Estate Partners for expertise on the sale, leasing, and acquisition of property.

Suburban Commercial Real Estate Investing

For commercial real estate brokers in Chicago, and in other major metropolitan cities, the suburbs present a big opportunity for commercial development. Despite being primarily residential areas, especially in recent years, they have been growing rapidly in sales. Here are some of the pros and cons to investing in commercial real estate in the suburbs:


Many of the pros of suburban commercial real estate investing are the opposite of the cons of urban investing, including:

  • You get more property for your dollar.
  • There are lower crime rates.
  • Taxes, utilities, and other fees tend to be lower.
  • There’s usually more room for development.
  • Many tenants in the suburbs will sign longer-term contracts.


Again, the cons of investing in commercial real estate in the suburbs exist due to the differences in the nature of suburbs and cities. Many of these cons are the opposites of the pros of investing in the city, including:

  • There are not as many nearby businesses, attractions, or amenities.
  • There is a lower pool of potential tenants.
  • There is less foot traffic for properties that depend on it.

Contact Us

To get in touch with experienced commercial real estate brokers in Chicago, contact Frontline Real Estate Partners today.

Any Questions?

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Frontline Real Estate Partners, LLC

477 Elm Place
Highland Park, IL 60035

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(847) 780-8065

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