Newest Home Pricing Data Shows Homes Becoming More Attainable Across The Country

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by Kurt Clements I usually focus on Chicago Real Estate issues, specific to the South Side of Chicago.  However, today I want to discuss the market effects throughout the country. Case-Shiller’s 20-city home price index for September reported the lowest pace of year-over-year home price growth in almost two years. Lower home prices balanced housing markets between sellers and buyers, but …

5 Home Renovations That Really Raise Values

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by Kurt Clements Chicago renovation projects on the south side are insanely popular right now.  There are many home renovation projects that can increase the comfort and visual appeal of a dwelling. Owners who plan to sell their home in the future, however, prefer to focus on projects that will return a healthy profit at closing. Here are 5 renovation projects …

How To Stage A House For A Faster Sale At A Higher Price

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by Kurt Clements “Staging” a house means to prepare it for sale in ways that make it more attractive to potential buyers. Homeowners in Chicago can do much of this staging work themselves and should get suggestions from their real estate agent. They can also hire a professional to do the staging work for them. Value-Added Staging A study of 4,200 …

5 Tips To Price Your Home To Sell For Top Dollar

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by Kurt Clements Many home sellers are confused about how to price their home to sell. It’s definitely challenging to try and find that sweet spot between pricing it low enough so it flies off the market without undercutting the home’s value. Emotions play into the decision, too. If the seller has a lot of sweat equity in the home, or …

You Ask, We Answer: What is Private Mortgage Insurance or ‘PMI’ and How Does It Work?

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by Kurt Clements For many homeowners, their mortgage payment contains more than just principal and interest. A little something called PMI could be representing a significant portion of that payment, and it’s important for home buyers to understand this cost. I do my best to explain both in this article for my South Side Chicago homebuyers. What Is PMI? PMI stands …

U.S. Wage Increases Could Help Home Buyers

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by Kurt Clements The struggle to achieve the American homeownership dream often feels like it happens in a vacuum. Everyday people work hard, save money and polish up their credit to get a low mortgage rate. As a Realtor I love to watch my south side Chicago home buyers grind through the struggle and make it happen. But there are powerful …

Winterizing Your Yard: 3 Landscape Tips

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by Kurt Clements Did you see the snow flurries in Chicago on Saturday, winter already?  It is time to get your property winterized for the Chicago cold that is coming. Here are 3 tips to assure that your yard will not only survive the winter, but flourish during the dormant season. They’ll assure that your landscape will greet spring full of …

Best Things To Do Now To Get Your Finances Mortgage Ready

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by Kurt Clements You probably already know that strong finances to qualify for a mortgage can be the biggest hurdle — aside from actually finding that dream Chicago property — along the path to home ownership. Rather than agonizing about it, however, there are some positive actions you can take in advance to help you realize your dream.  I am a …

Fed Raises Key Interest Rate For 3rd Consecutive Time

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by Kurt Clements The Federal Open Market Committee of the Federal Reserve announced that it raised the target federal funds rate to a range of 2.00 percent to 2.25 percent. This was the third consecutive increase in the Fed’s key interest rate and was the eighth time the Fed raised its key interest rate since 2015. Does that mean that interest …

5 Things To Know About Severe Weather And Homeowners Insurance

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by Kurt Clements  – Sever Weather of Palm Tree, Not in Chicago The average homeowner feels secure knowing they have insurance in the event of a severe weather calamity. Most people believe that no matter what happens, they have paid for protection against disaster. Unfortunately, not every homeowners insurance policy provides full reimbursement from severe weather losses. Hurricanes, tornados, earthquakes and other …