Friday, August 04, 2006

Market update

For a quick overview of the single family real estate market in Palatine take a look at this blog post and this post. These posts will give you a quick overview of what is on the market, what has sold in the last 30 days and what is currently under contract.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Is FSBO a good idea for you?

Why For Sale By Owner May Not Be The Best Option For You

Many people believe that they can easily sell their home without the help of a realtor, and they can, but most don’t realize exactly how difficult it is to sell your home without the proper knowledge of real estate law. Almost 25% of the homes that are sold each year are sold by the homeowner, yet half of those that sold their homes on their own said that they would hire a professional if they could do it over again. Thirty percent of the people that sold their home on their own said that they were not happy with the results. While it is possible to save money by selling your home on your own, it is a difficult undertaking and not one that everyone is capable of.

Not only does selling your home take time, it takes a real understanding of the real estate market in and around your area. If your house is priced too low you can end up losing money on the deal, if it’s priced too high it can sit on the market and develop a reputation of being a property with problems. There are some serious questions that every homeowner should ask himself or herself before they attempt to sell their home themselves.

Do You Have The Time?

You need to seriously consider whether or not you have the time to sell your home on your own. Most people do not realize how much time it actually takes to sell a home. Most homes that are for sale by owner sit on the market much longer than they need to because the owner cannot give interested parties the accessibility to the home that they need to decide whether or not the home is right for them. If you work or have children, you might find that you simply cannot find the time to accommodate those that express interest in the home.

Are You Prepared For The Stereotypical Low Bids You’ll Receive?

Many buyers think that homeowners that are selling their homes on their own simply need out of the home. This means that the seller will only offer a really low price, meaning the home can sit on the market much longer than it needs to. Homeowners need to know the value of their home, as well as how they can properly screen unqualified individuals. Knowing how much you will minimally sell your home for is a good idea, as is trying to spot those that don’t intend to give you a serious offer.

Do You Understand The Legal Aspects of Selling Your Home?

While you don’t have to be a lawyer to sell a home, there is a certain amount of legalese that you need to acquire. Do you have this information presently, or is there a way that you can obtain the correct information so that you can sell your home properly? Homeowners often struggle with incomplete or incorrect paperwork, lack of inspections, and disclosure laws. If you do not know how to properly tackle all of these aspects you are well advised to hire a realtor to help you out.

One must also consider if they know how to hire all of the appropriate professionals such as a title company, an inspector, an attorney, as well as an escrow company. Hiring the wrong professionals or failing to hire all of the correct professionals can end up costing those that fail to sell their home within the law. If you are offering financing options, you’ll also need to consider whether you have all of the information you need and if you can provide the buyer with all of the information that they need to feel comfortable with any or all of the options that you offer.
The bottom line is that if you are a homeowner and you don’t know what you are doing, you actually stand to lose more money than you would pay a real estate agent or broker in commission for the sale of your home. There are a lot of details, big and small, that normal people just do not realize need to be in place with the sale of a home. If you know that you have all of your ducks in a row, it’s not a bad idea to try to sell your home on your own. If you aren’t sure whether you can pull it all together, you will likely be better off selling your home with the help of a real estate agent.

Thanks to for the article.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Finding A Home That Is Right For You

Buying a new home or real estate is exciting, but it can also be a bit stressful because it is a big step, especially if you’ve never purchased a home or real estate before. Before you contract a realtor there are several things that you should really consider so that the search for your new home will be a lot more fun and a lot less stressful. When you know what you want and need you can then direct your realtor of choice to help you find the house that is out there waiting for you.

Determine Your Needs
The first thing you need to do is determine what you personally need from a home. For instance, if you have a family of six you probably aren’t looking for a one or two bedroom home. Decide how many bedrooms you need as well as how many bathrooms would be desirable. Consider whether you can deal with more or less of either bedrooms or bathrooms. Also think about what type of yard you’ll want around your house. If you have a big dog, you may consider a big yard a necessity. Do you desire a specific type of floor plan? If you don’t want stairs or you do want that second story that you have been dreaming of these are all things that you should write down on a list. You should also consider overall square footage. Many families simply need more space to spread out, and that’s understandable, while others are looking to decrease the size of their homes after the kids leave! Really determine what your needs are so that you will be able to convey them to your realtor.

Pick Your Location
It can be difficult to determine where you want to live if you are relocating to a new area, but if you have an area of town picked out where you absolutely know you want to live, that will help your realtor do his or her job much more efficiently by searching for your needs and wants in a specific area of town. Location can also be important from a resale point of view because you want a home that will gain value, not lose value. It’s a good idea to not only consider how close a certain neighborhood is to work and school and the grocery store, but how wise of an investment it is as well. If you aren’t sure about location, a good realtor can always help you determine where the best place in town will be for you.

Know Your Finances
Now that you have determined your needs and where you want to live, you need to take a close look at your finances. Of course, this may seem like it should be the first step, but unless you know what you need it will be hard to determine if it will fit into your budget. Look at what you are paying now and determine if you want that to stay the same, be reduced, or if you can afford to pay more. Now, will the dollar amount that you want or need to pay each month for your mortgage mesh well with what you want from a home and where you want it? If so, you might want to look into getting pre-qualified for a home loan to streamline your house hunting process.

What You Want
Now is the fun part, you can think about what you want. Do you really want air conditioning? Do you want a pool? A fireplace? A wet bar? An upgraded kitchen? A spa tub in the bathroom? Make a wish list of the things that you would be thrilled to find in a home that is the right price, has the appropriate number of bedrooms and bathrooms, and is in the right part of town. This will help your realtor show you homes that you will enjoy seeing and could really see yourself in.

Get a Realtor
Now it’s time to find yourself a realtor and give him or her a list of all the things that you really want and need from a home. All of your planning will make your realtor’s job much easier and will also ensure that you are on the same page and make sure your time looking at homes is very well spent.

Buying a home is something that takes some planning, so try to be patient as you put all the pieces of the puzzle together for yourself and your realtor. The more you know what you want or need, the more smoothly the process will run, getting you into your new home sooner.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Things to Consider When Purchasing Real Estate

The real estate market is currently booming nationwide and for this reason more and more individuals are looking into buying a home. As the purchase of a home is a major decision and the largest purchase you may ever make there are a few things that prospective homebuyers should look for in their journey to finding the perfect home.

Area Where the Home Is Located
Perhaps one of the main factors that should be considered when purchasing a home is location, location, location. Where the home is located is an extremely important aspect to the home and whether you want to make an offer. Various factors such as safety, adequacy of schools and location of nearby amenities are all things which relate to the location aspect. For this reason, it is best to start the search for potential real estate by narrowing down a specific area where you would like to buy a home. This will also help to narrow down one’s options with regard to homes for sale.

Price of the Home
As many individuals have a set amount of money they are able to spend for the purchase of a home, it is beneficial to know exactly what price range their potential real estate purchase will fall into. By having a set number in mind, the prospective homebuyer can narrow down their options and only look at those homes which they can afford. Looking at homes out of one’s price range is not only a waste of time but it is a bit of a temptation as well. When buying a home, one wants to be sure that they will be able to afford the mortgage payments once the house is purchased. Because of this potential homebuyers might consider getting a pre-approved mortgage so they know for sure their budget and the price of homes to shop for.

Size of the Home
Another way to narrow down the choices which one faces when it comes to home buying is to have a specific size in mind when it comes to the home. For example, if an individual is looking for a house that has 2 bedrooms and 2 baths, there is no need to waste time looking at 1 bedroom condominiums. Having an approximate size in mind when looking for a home is a wonderful way to specify one’s desired options when it comes to square footage and number of rooms.

How Long the House Has Been On the Market
A great indicator to look at when viewing homes for possible purchase is how long they have been on the real estate market. This will tell the prospective homebuyer a few different things including condition of the home, price of the home and flexibility of the current owners with regard to the sale. This is a great way to get a feel for the overall situation surrounding the house.

Buying a new house is a wonderful and exciting adventure to embark on. Frequently one will get overwhelmed with all of the details that go into this somewhat arduous task. However, by keeping the previously mentioned factors in mind, one may be better able to prepare themselves for the journey which lies ahead in the great world of real estate purchase.

Written by Ken Smith. Ken Smith is the owner and team leader of the Suburban House Hunters Team and also has started a blog of resources for REALTORS.