By Bob Uphues
A Riverside home development company will be featured on a real estate "rescue" television show next fall, which will chronicle the completion of a new single-family home presently under construction on Lionel Road.
Riverside Village Manager Jessica Frances confirmed last week that "The Deed: Chicago" has gotten the go-ahead to begin filming segments at the property, which is being developed by a firm called Safe and Sound Investments, owned by Riverside couple Nicolas and Caren Isopo.
"The Deed: Chicago" is a reality show currently airing its second season on the cable news network CNBC. The show is similar to many of the buy-and-flip shows that air frequently on cable TV, but with a twist.
Developers on "The Deed" call in Chicago real estate investor/broker Sean Conlon to help rescue situations that have spun out of their control. Conlon, an Irish immigrant whose rags-to-riches story is introduced at the start of each episode invests in the at-risk projects in the hope of saving the day and sharing in the profits when all is said and done.
Nick and Caren Isopo founded Safe and Sound Investments in 2015, with the company starting out with a condo renovation in the Wicker Park neighborhood of Chicago. The couple gradually ramped up their efforts to include major expansions of modest single family homes, providing luxury finishes and top-end sale prices.
A plain Chicago-style bungalow on Lawton Road in Riverside, which the company completely renovated and added a second-story addition, sold late last year for $748,000. Another major renovation/expansion project on a 1917-era frame bungalow in Oak Park remains on the market with a list price of $759,000.
The Lionel Road project, however, is a different animal. It's Safe and Sound Investment's first from-the-ground-up home building project, breaking ground at the end of November 2017.
Neighbors were notified in late January that filming for the show would begin soon and run through the end of May.
According to the unit production manager for the program, Sylvetta Christmas, neighbors aren't likely to notice much filming activity. The five-person, two-camera crew travels in a minivan.
"There are no trucks, trailers or stars," Christmas said. "It's pretty low key. You won't even know we're there."
Nicolas Isopo declined to answer questions about the filming, citing non-disclosure agreements he signed with the show's production company.