As we enter the New Year, one thing most of us have in common is the attempt at a resolution for the upcoming year. Last year, at the beginning of 2016, my resolution was to use less energy. I was inspired for both environmental and economic reasons. Here is what I accomplished:
For 2017, my New Year’s resolution is to continue the quest for a more energy-efficient home. If you have an interest in saving energy and money, please visit the Energy Saver website.
As we approach the holidays, I have had several thoughts about the gifts we give and receive. Doing some quick research, the idea of giving gifts to family and friends probably began in Europe. Gifts were given as a show of gratitude during the year-end celebrations.
It is a bit fuzzy when the feeding frenzy of gifts became the focus of Christmas and other religious holidays. I would like to see us move back to the original meaning of gifts as a show of gratitude and community.
I have three charities that I believe make a difference:
Good thoughts to you and your family!
As a realtor, there are two questions I’m always asked. The first question is: “What is my house worth?” The answer depends on several variables. It is best to involve a real estate professional in the market analysis process. They will also help you with a marketing and pricing strategy.
The second question is: “When is the best time to sell my home?” According to a Realtor.com article by Craig Donofrio, “[s]pring marks the beginning of the busiest home-selling and home-buying season in most areas. With the warmer weather, more daylight, and the impetus to get a new house in order before the next school calendar begins, buyers are more likely to shop during this time of year, with home buying peaking in June.”
Why are we talking about spring selling in November? Because according to Realtor.com, “[t]he home-selling process typically starts several months before a property is made available for sale. It’s necessary to look at a home through the eyes of a prospective buyer and determine what needs to be cleaned, painted, repaired and tossed out. Ask yourself: If you were buying this home, what would you want to see? The goal is to show a home that looks good, maximizes space, and attracts as many buyers as possible.”
It is the perfect time for you to work with your realtor in developing a home sale plan and budget. This process should look at the return on dollar investment as well as the hours needed to prep your home. Good luck!
Illinois residents are bombarded on a daily basis with news about the state budget impasse. Coupled with the prospect of rising property taxes, preparing for retirement has become even harder. However, you do have options. A recent article from Benefits Pro listed the ten best states for retirement. Surprisingly, two states are right next door.
#3 – Indiana
Cheap housing works in this state’s favor, with the lowest average listing price on the list at $157,435. The state also has the second lowest cost of living in the country and some of the nation’s highest average Social Security benefits, at $1,379.93.
#2 – Michigan
Housing costs are cheap in Michigan, as are living costs, positioning retirees to enjoy their golden years. The state also has the fourth highest average Social Security benefits and high Medicare payouts per person.
If you are thinking about relocating, it may be wise to contact an agent who not only understands the best way to market your home, but can also help in the transition to the Michigan or Indiana area. I would happy to answer any questions regarding the sale of your home and possible relocation. Please give me a call at 847.769.4999.
There is nothing more exciting - or more intimidating - then buying your first home. There are several factors you should consider as you begin the search.
Buy your first house with the intent to sell. Statistically, you will own your first home the least amount of time of any home you purchase. It probably will not be your “forever” home. Make sure your first home is a good financial investment.
Be sure to work with an experienced real estate agent. This is one time that experience really does matter. Look for an agent who is well-qualified and knowledgeable in all areas of the home purchasing process. It is important for the inexperienced buyer to work with an agent who is a patient and listens to your needs. The agent should be like a teacher, educating you in all aspects of the home purchasing process.
Prior to beginning the search for your first home, talk with a qualified and experienced lending officer. Know your purchasing ability in advance, since you will need to be pre-qualified to submit an offer on a property. Your real estate agent can introduce you to a qualified lending specialist.
The hardest part of the first-time home buying process is understanding that your family, friends and co-workers really care about you. They will share more advice and suggestions than you ever imagined. Listen carefully, be respectful, and thank everyone for their ideas. But remember, it is your home. Enjoy the challenge!
If you are a first-time home buyer, and would like more information about the home purchasing process, I invite you to contact me at 847.769.4999 or email@example.com with any questions you may have.
I am in my 6th year of selling real estate. Since January of this year, I have shown more homes than in any previous full year. I have noticed that there is something consistently odd about the instructions real estate agents give to sellers. By listening and making note of what is important to buyers, I can say with confidence that by implementing the following suggestions, your home will sell faster.
This year, the 23rd Annual Arlington Heights House Walk will take place on Sunday, June 26. This event is sponsored by the Arlington Heights Historical Society (a 501 (c)(3) non-profit) and is eagerly attended each year by several hundred people from our community. The House Walk showcases five or six diverse homes in our village, including a variety of homes both large and small, new and old.
This event is one of the two major fundraisers we hold each year for the Historical Society. The role of the Historical Society is to fund and support the care of the Arlington Heights Historical Museum collection, develop new exhibits throughout the year, and provide educational programming for the community. The Society's fundraisers, such as the 23rd Annual Arlington Heights House Walk, allow it to continue supporting the museum.
We are looking for additional homes to showcase this year - houses both large and small, as well as newly constructed and older homes. If you are interested in participating, or if you can recommend a home for this celebrated local event, please contact me at 847.769.4999 or firstname.lastname@example.org. I look forward to hearing from you!
The one question I have received consistently over the last six weeks is “When is the best time to sell my home?” The answer is, “It depends.” There are seasonal influences by area and type of home.
According to Zillow, both local market variations and weather patterns can affect the buying season. However, new analyses suggest that homes sold in late spring (between May 1-15) sell almost 18.5 days faster and for 1 percent (or $1,700) more than the average listing price.
Market research shows that homes in the greater Chicago area, listed between May 1st and the 15th, will sell 22.5 days faster and achieve a 1.2% increase in the average sale price.
What are the steps to listing my home?
For more information on the selling process, please contact me at 847.769.4999.