All Blog Entries by Chris Scheall

Found 16 blog entries published by Chris Scheall.

 

When you decide to buy a condominium, remember it’s a different process from buying a single-family home. There are a few things to keep in mind before buying a condominium in Chicago.

Buyers are attracted to condo living because of the convenience to area shopping, dining, and amenities. If a repair is needed, the building maintenance team handles it, not the unit owner. Not everyone wants to mow a backyard lawn every weekend or tend to unruly shrubbery, so condo living appeals to people with fast-paced busy lifestyles who want to live in downtown Chicago where all the dining, shopping, and nightlife are a few steps away. 

Keep a proactive outlook when selecting a unit. Think about how your family or living situation may change in the

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When you think of buying a brand new home built the way you want it, you expect the process to be easy without obstacles like repairs and contingencies. However, there are things you should keep in mind when buying a new construction condominium in Chicago. This is a list of tips to help you get the most for your money and what to expect when you buy a new construction condominium in Chicago. 

Be Patient and Get Upgrade Costs in Writing

When you buy an existing home, you can expect to move into your home in a couple of months or sooner. However, new construction condos can take longer depending on how far along the developer is in the construction process.

Make sure the estimated completion date works for your schedule. Be prepared for

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Market Watch

Home buyers should keep an eye on the ebb and flow of the 2019 real estate market and trends. The housing market of 2019 may be one of changing tides. Predicting them is almost impossible. Before starting a search for your next apartment, loft, co-op, penthouse, townhouse, or condominium in Chicago, it’s a good idea to get a sense of the forces that sway the market.

Realtor.com compiled some data about housing market predictions and determined that both buyers and sellers may face challenges in 2019. You can see the full Realtor.com Housing 2019 Forecast here.

Below, is a collection of highlights from the report and other sources about 2019 trends and forecasts for the U.S. real estate market, with special emphasis on Chicago properties.

More

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10 Things You Should Ask a Real Estate Agent

Having the right real estate professional by your side can greatly improve your home-buying experience. A good rule of thumb is to interview a minimum of three candidates.

Here are 10 questions to ask during an interview:

  1. Are you a full-time professional REALTOR®?

    • How long have you worked full-time in real estate?
    • What geographic areas do you specialize in?

     

  2. Do you have a Website?

    • What information can I find there?

     

  3. How will you keep me informed during my home search and throughout the transaction?

  4. Do you have a staff or a team?

    • If so, what roles will they play in my transaction?

     

  5. Will you show me properties from other

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Deciding How Much House You Can Afford

Before you start house hunting, you need to determine how much house you can afford, which will entail getting either prequalified or preapproved for a home loan. A real estate agent can help you find a mortgage broker to begin the process. While getting preapproved is a more in-depth process, a preapproval letter lets both real estate agents and sellers know that you're a serious shopper who means business.

What do I do to get prequalified?

A prequalification can be done online or over the phone and does not require your submitting financial documents. You will be asked to provide basic information about your finances — for instance, your household income versus your debt load. With this information, the

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How Can a Real Estate Agent Help Me

Whether you're in the market for a primary residence, an investment property or a second home, purchasing real estate involves many important considerations and decisions. A real estate agent can provide the focus, due diligence and expertise needed to help you find the home of your dreams.

A real estate professional will:

  • Assist in determining how much house you can afford and help you get pre-qualified or pre-approved for a loan.
  • Simplify your search by helping you define home and neighborhood criteria.
  • Screen new listings daily and alert you of homes that match your criteria.
  • Keep you abreast of local market conditions, so you can make informed decisions.
  • Gather in-depth detail on each home,
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Location, Location, Location

Where you buy not only affects the home's current and future value, but it also affects your lifestyle. Your agent will be able to conduct a more targeted home search if you outline your preferences in neighborhoods and nearby amenities.

Here's a checklist of items you should consider and communicate to your chosen real estate agent

  • Urban, suburban or rural
  • Commute time
  • School districts
  • Desirable neighborhoods
  • Proximity to the airport
  • Proximity to restaurants and retail
  • Access to major highways and thoroughfares
  • Access to public transportation
  • Health care facilities
  • Parks and recreation
  • Length of time you plan to live in the home (Your agent should be knowledgeable about growth trends
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Making Your Home Wishlist


Before the home search begins, your real estate agent will want to know as much as possible about the features and amenities you desire. To help your agent better serve you, divide your preferences into "negotiable" and "non-negotiable." Here are some details to consider:

Exterior

  • Type of property (house, condominium, town home, loft):
  • Age of property:
  • Preferences in architectural style:
  • Number of stories:
  • Type of foundation:
  • Roof construction:
  • Lot size and/or location:
  • Landscape preferences (fencing, built-in sprinkler system):
  • Pool/spa:
  • Garage or carport:

Interior

  • Number of bedrooms:
  • Number of bathrooms:
  • Minimum square feet:
  • Central air/heat:
  • Wiring:
  • Electrical or
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Opting For New Home Construction

Whether to buy an existing home or have one built is yet another decision to make during the home-buying process. If you decide to go with new construction, a real estate agent can be a powerful advocate in your corner as you negotiate upgrades, a move-in date and other terms with the home builder.

Below are some basic pointers to prepare you for the journey ahead.

Selecting a builder

Shopping for a large production or custom home builder can be a daunting task. Start by defining what architectural styles appeal to you and then seek out the builders in your area who offer those styles. Due diligence is essential. Ask friends for referrals to get firsthand accounts; verify the builder's state license status, if

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Seven Steps to Buying Your Home

  1. Define your needs.

    Congratulations on your decision to purchase a new home! Before you go house hunting, it's a good idea to define what kind of home and neighborhood would best suit your desires and needs and make a wish list. Share this list with your real estate agent. The finer the details, the more effective your home search will be. To further define your needs, you may want to divide your lists into negotiable and non-negotiable items, so your agent can operate with some flexibility when scouting for homes on your behalf.

  2. Get prequalified or preapproved.

    Now that you know what you want in a home and neighborhood, you need to find out what you can afford. There are two ways to go about this:

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