It looks grim for mansion sellers in Winnetka

Another luxury property owner— former Serta CEO — takes a fat loss

TRD CHICAGO /
May.May 01, 2020 12:00 PM
480 Oak Street in Winnetka (Credit: Redfin)

480 Oak Street in Winnetka (Credit: Redfin)

Owners of sprawling mansions in Winnetka are starting to take their lumps.

Not long after Robert F. Steel took a $3.2 million loss on a 12,000-square-foot home on Hill Road, another seller is poised to take a sizable hit.

Bob Sherman, the former CEO of mattress maker Serta sold his Winnetka manse for $3 million, according to Crain’s. He bought the pad in 2005 for $4.4 million from former Tribune Company executive Michael Ferro, who resigned after allegations of sexual harassment.

According to Crain’s, Sherman and his wife Barbara Bradford put the home on the market in February 2015 for $7.25 million and cut the price nearly a dozen times in the ensuing four years. It went into contract in March, though the buyer has not been disclosed.

Baird & Warner’s Dayle Lively told Crain’s that her clients have no plans to demolish the turn-of-the-century-era house, which sits on a half acre and was designed by architect Benjamin Marshall. The 6,800-square-foot house sits above a private beach.

The luxury market in Winnetka has long been a strength. But like most tony suburbs around Chicago, it has sputtered in the last year.

In August, the daughter of Walton Street Capital managing director Neil Bluhm, Meredith Bluhm-Wolf — and her husband William Wolf — sold their Winnetka mansion. The $4.1 million sale price, after three months on the market, included a 12 percent discount from its original asking.

And Steel, the former president of KA Steel Chemicals Inc., had bought his compound for $6.2 million back in 2009. After multiple price cuts, he just sold it for $3.1 million to an undisclosed buyer. [Crain’s] — James Kleimann


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