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Real Estate

Selling your home in the winter

People are often reluctant to put their home on the market with winter approaching. The reality is that marriages and births, promotions and job transfers happen year-round, so people are looking for houses during all seasons. Selling a home during winter can actually work to the seller’s advantage, since potential buyers are usually relocating out of necessity, creating greater urgency. Regardless of the season, the key to selling any home is creating appeal. Adding thoughtful touches … [Read more...]

Selling your home? Change the interior wall colors

People selling their homes in Illinois should heed the advice of professionals when it comes to setting a price and clearing out the clutter. According to Consumer Reports, painting interior rooms is also a key part of moving the property quickly. The organization reports that investing a little bit of money can generate up to a 3 percent return. There are several considerations for those ready to pick up a brush. As any Elk Grove Village real estate attorney knows, the color and type of … [Read more...]

Improve your curb appeal and attract buyers with these 3 tips

Working on the appearance of a home can be time-consuming, but industry experts say it is well worth the investment. According to a report in The Washington Post, homeowners in Illinois and across the country can expect a 150 percent return on investment for landscaping projects alone. Where and how homeowners spend their money can affect how quickly the house moves, as any Oak Lawn property lawyer would know. Sellers should invest in making these three changes to boost their curb … [Read more...]

How does an appraiser determine a home’s value?

Lenders in Illinois nearly always require homebuyers to get a house appraised prior to issuing a loan. According to, problems can occur when the appraisal falls below the sale price of the home. Mortgage companies will typically only approve loans that are at or below the appraisal. Therefore, industry experts recommend that sellers obtain an appraisal before ever listing a home. As any real estate attorney in Elk Grove would know, there are several factors used to determine … [Read more...]

Selling a home: Is it a good idea to renovate before listing?

When homeowners go to sell their home with the assistance of a real estate attorney in Chicago, they strive to sell their house for as much as possible. One strategy many homeowners use in order to achieve this goal is to renovate major aspects of their home, like their kitchen, before putting it up for sale. Although renovating can be beneficial, homeowners should carefully consider which projects to perform to obtain the highest return on their investment. Some renovations are better than … [Read more...]

What is a balloon mortgage?

When homebuyers in Illinois go to purchase a new home with the help of a real estate attorney in Gurnee, one financing option available to them is a balloon mortgage. These loans require a payment at the end of a specific time period that is larger than the regular monthly mortgage payments. Typically, the balloon payment is twice as much as the loan’s average monthly payment and can often equate to tens of thousands of dollars. The benefits of a balloon mortgage There are many benefits … [Read more...]

3 things you should look for in a real estate agent

When property owners in Illinois get ready to sell their home or find a new one, they often seek the assistance of a Lake Bluff real estate lawyer and a real estate agent. To ensure the buying or selling process goes smoothly, there are a few different qualities buyers and sellers should look for in their real estate agent. Creativity Some real estate transactions go exactly as planned, while others are fraught with delays and other unique situations. Although buyers and sellers cannot … [Read more...]

What are the potential liabilities if you rent out your half of a duplex?

For many property owners in Illinois, owning a duplex and renting out the other half of it is a beneficial arrangement. However, before embarking on the renting process with the assistance of a real estate lawyer in McHenry, those interested in becoming landlords should familiarize themselves with some of the potential liabilities they face. Property damage Not all tenants are as careful about maintaining their living space as others. In some situations, duplex owners may find that their … [Read more...]

2015 brings 2 changes to estate tax law

Recently, the Internal Revenue Service announced what the gift and estate tax limits would be for the year 2015. These numbers, which are adjusted annually to account for inflation, matter to those who work with their estate planning attorney in Illinois to reduce their estates by gifting assets and money to family members or friends. The federal state tax exemption The federal estate tax exemption refers to the amount a person can leave to his or her heirs without needing to pay federal … [Read more...]

What is a Certificate of Zoning Compliance?

When those in Illinois work with their Chicago real estate lawyer to transfer ownership of or sell residential property, a Certificate of Zoning Compliance must be obtained. These certificates verify that the number of residential dwelling units contained in the property meet legal requirements under the Chicago Zoning Ordinance. However, the ownership or sale of cooperative buildings or condominiums do not have to comply with this requirement. The definition of a dwelling unit Under … [Read more...]

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