Throw a rock and you?ll hit one of the garden-variety condos or ho-hum new houses on the Chicago real estate scene. But all the stainless-steel appliances in the world couldn?t sell you on a home with zero character.

A new brokerage firm, Idealty, is pitching itself to a breed of client that sounds a lot like us: ?creative class? aesthetes who are way over granite countertops. ?

The brokers aim to be your hip friends-in-the-know. They understand the market--why the Google effect is working for the West Loop and why River North?s high-rise bubble is perpetually primed to burst.

Once you start going to showings, your broker will home in on your subtle reactions; you won?t remember wrinkling your nose at a building?s hideous hallway carpet, but she'll notice. Sometimes you?ll even ride along with her to see listings by bike, so you can more vividly experience neighborhoods and streets.

We recently told an Idealty broker we were looking for a contemporary but non-generic three-bedroom for around half a mil. She took us to a futuristic three-bedroom row house with a neon-yellow front door in Logan Square and a Wicker Park penthouse with a roof deck and--wait for it--included garage parking.

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