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September, 2014 Archives

Archives for September 2014

How much money should property buyers set aside for a down payment?

When buyers in Illinois purchase a new home, they are typically required to provide their lender with a down payment. This, in addition to the purchaser’s credit score, annual income, total debt and credit history influence how much funding they qualify for. Typically, home buyers should plan on saving approximately five to 20 percent of the sale price of their home in cash to qualify for a conventional loan, but this specific amount varies depending on the purchaser’s individual … [Read more...]

Children and inheritance: Avoiding unnecessary battles

When their parents died, four children inherited the couple’s home. However, More magazine reports that outside of the property itself, there were few details given about how the siblings would divide the remaining assets and items. As a result, the children, all grown adults, wound up arguing about everything from wedding china to how, or whether or not, to sell the house. One of the children, a 42-year-old woman, said they were forced to make very tense decisions that pitted them against … [Read more...]

What is a testamentary trust?

Many people want to ensure that after their death, children or survivors will not suffer financially. However, according to a LexisNexis report, more than half of American adults do not have a will in place, which can lead to a lengthy and complicated probate process. There are a number of ways to set up financial plans to prevent family members from a messy court battle. When doing their estate planning, people in Illinois should consider a testamentary trust as a reliable option. … [Read more...]

The family business and your estate plan

In 1998, a Philadelphia couple took a trip to Long Island and decided to buy a winery. According to The Wall Street Journal, they dove head-first into wine-making and were largely successful. Their children were not involved in the business, which did not pose a problem until the end of June, when both parents died within a week of each other. The couple had not put together a plan of succession for the family-run business, and the children say they have not decided whether or not to sell the … [Read more...]

The advantages and disadvantages of using trade secrets

Most Chicago businesses have some sort of special ideas or plans that they believe to be unique to them and integral to their success. Whether a marketing plan or a completely new product concept, these trade secrets are generally considered highly confidential by business owners and entrepreneurs. However, there may be both pros and cons to this approach. The value of social impact and change While protecting intellectual property can be highly essential for some entities, a Forbes … [Read more...]

Finding the right location for your business

When starting an all-new company or looking to relocate an existing company in Chicago, finding the right location can directly impact the ultimate success—or not—of the business. Many things can contribute to what makes a business location the right one and those can vary depending upon the nature of the business. However, the following considerations can apply to most companies when seeking that perfect location. Traffic and accessibility Getting customers in the door is a must for … [Read more...]

Buying a commercial property for your business can be a good investment

Although purchasing commercial real estate has its risks, entrepreneurs and business owners in various industries in Illinois can benefit from buying commercial space. However, buying commercial property is not the right fit for every situation and is a decision that should be approached carefully by business owners. Buying versus leasing In many cases, business owners are forced to pay higher rental costs when the real estate market slows down. Purchasing commercial property eliminates … [Read more...]

Banks accused of violating property owners’ rights over illegal break-ins

According to Illinois law, homeowners who default on their mortgage payments are allowed to stay in their homes until the foreclosure process is completed. If the occupant moves out before the foreclosure process is over, it is up to the bank to maintain the property. In many cases, the bank turns over these responsibilities to another company. In Illinois, Safeguard, a company that contracts with mortgage lending services, allegedly abused their responsibilities and had a case filed against … [Read more...]

Medicaid planning: The risks of doing it on your own

According to the Congressional Budget Office, research suggests that more than two-thirds of seniors over the age of 65 will need some type of assistance during the remaining years of their life to deal with a loss in their ability to function independently. Although the price of long-term care varies, LongTermCare.gov estimates that it costs: $6,235 a month for a semi-private room in a nursing home facility$21 an hour for the assistance of a home health aide$3,293 a month for care in an … [Read more...]

Tips on creating a good business pitch for customers

It could be said that the best salespeople do not actually sell but solve. Problems, that is. The heart and soul of effectively promoting a product or service is really all about getting customers to need and want it. The way to do that is to make them see that it does, or offers, something useful to them. Chicago companies of all sizes and types must find a way to help their salespeople drop the old-fashioned sales mentality and adopt the more profitable relationship creating approach. Do … [Read more...]

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