Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Real Estate Lingo for North Shore Homebuyers

If you are gearing up to buy a North Shore home for the first time, or it’s been awhile since you have bought, you may need a quick real estate lingo 101 course. As your North Shore real estate agent, I am here to help! Here’s a rundown of the most common words you will hear as a buyer, so when you go to purchase a home in Glencoe, Winnetka, Highland Park, Deerfield, Northbrook, Lake Forest, Wilmette, Evanston, Glenview, Riverwoods, Bannockburn, and other North Shore communities, you’ll feel knowledgeable and prepared!

Real estate agent – This is the professional who will help you purchase a home. I am an agent on Chicago’s North Shore. I will help you find homes for sale in the area, I will help you set up showings to see the homes, I will help you negotiate a price and contingencies, I will help you understand the paperwork, I can offer suggestions for other professionals you need help from, etc.

Appraiser/appraisal – Once you have your offer accepted on a home, you will have an appraisal done. Usually the bank with your mortgage loan will require this to secure financing. It’s a professional analysis used to determine the current value of the home. The appraiser is the person who completes the appraisal.

Home inspection/inspector – A buyer should have a home inspection done on a home before closing. This will allow you to know of any issues with the home, such as with the foundation, electricity, plumbing, etc. The inspector is the person who completes the inspection. If a lot comes up, you can back out if there are too many expensive issues, or you can try to renegotiate the price.

Closing costs – There are costs involved in completing a real estate transaction. These costs include title insurance, financing costs, taxes and more. Ask your mortgage lender for a complete list of closing cost items and an estimate of how much they will cost. Buyers need to be prepared to pay these.

Down payment – This is how much money you have to put down on the house upfront. Down payments are usually between 3 and 20 percent of the price of the home, depending on what type of loan you take out. Ask your lender what options are available to you.

Mortgage rate – Interest rates for mortgage loans fluctuate, but the lower yours is, the less you’ll pay over the long run. The interest rate gets added to your monthly mortgage payment over the lifetime of the loan. Right now, rates are very low, which is great news for buyers!

Pre-approval letter – This is a letter from a mortgage lender, proving that you do qualify for a mortgage loan for a specific amount. It is smart to get this before beginning your home search, so you have proof for the seller that you can afford their home.

Credit score – Everyone has a score between 300 and 850 that shows how good or poor your credit history is. The higher the number, the better it looks to mortgage lenders. It proves how likely it is you can and will pay back your mortgage debt.


Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Winnetka Real Estate Market Stats for July 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 175 properties actively on the market with the average price of $1,670,765 in Winnetka.

City Sold Listings: 36 properties closed last month in Winnetka with an average sales price of $1,319,677. The average time on market for these properties was 73 days. 



To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Northbrook Real Estate Market Stats for July 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 431 properties actively on the market with the average price of $638,613 in Northbrook.

City Sold Listings: 91 properties closed last month in Northbrook with an average sales price of $540,580. The average time on market for these properties was 56 days. 


To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please view the Northbrook market statistics

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Highland Park Real Estate Market Stats for July 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 404 properties actively on the market with the average price of $783,656 in Highland Park.

City Sold Listings: 54 properties closed last month in Highland Park with an average sales price of $566,397. The average time on market for these properties was 42 days. 


To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please view the Highland Park market statistics

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Glencoe Real Estate Market Stats for July 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 85 properties actively on the market with the average price of $1,268,499 in Glencoe.

City Sold Listings: 30 properties closed last month in Glencoe with an average sales price of $1,241,517. The average time on market for these properties was 42 days. 


To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please view the Glencoe market statistics

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Deerfield Real Estate Market Stats for July 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 188 properties actively on the market with the average price of $588,397 in Deerfield.

City Sold Listings: 35 properties closed last month in Deerfield with an average sales price of $561,977. The average time on market for these properties was 50 days. 


To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please view the Deerfield market statistics

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Moving Tips for North Shore Buyers & Sellers

Once you sell, buy or both in the North Shore real estate market, it’s an exciting feeling of accomplishment! Unfortunately, the stress of moving can get in the way of your celebration. As your North Shore real estate agent, I am here to share some moving tips with you, so you can plan ahead and make the process as least stressful as possible!

Plan ahead in twos – Moving experts recommend that you think in terms of twos before moving. Start planning your move two months beforehand, and start packing two weeks before. This isn’t always possible, as you don’t know when exactly you will sell or buy, but start planning early.

Make a timeline – Create a timeline for yourself, such as packing up one room each week, or packing up items you know you won’t need before the move, or at least decluttering and getting rid of items you don’t want to move with. Consider hosting a yard sale or donating.

Follow a checklist – There are a lot of things to keep in mind, so don’t try to remember them all without a checklist. Write down what needs to happen before or right after the move, such as hiring a moving company, cancelling or changing utility services, changing mailing address, changing locks, scheduling cable and internet installation, etc. These are all things you’ll want to do quickly.

Treat moving like a marathon – Don’t leave everything last minute like a sprint. Start early and take your time, going through each room, starting with small tasks, getting rid of anything you no longer need, packaging everything to keep it safe, and marking all the boxes clearly with what is in them and which room they belong in.

Plan for the new space – Once you know where you’ll be moving, study the floor plan and square footage of each room, to determine if your current furniture will fit in the rooms and through the doorways. If something won’t fit, there’s no use in bringing it. If something needs to be taken apart to fit, that is something you can do ahead of time.

Contact moving company – Spend time reading reviews and asking for recommendations on a moving company, so you find one that is trustworthy and reliable. Check in two weeks ahead to confirm what time they are showing up on moving day, and check again the day before. Find out what you are responsible for doing ahead of time.

Pack a suitcase – You don’t want to feel rushed and anxious about unpacking, or lost without your essentials in your new home. Pack a suitcase with all of the things you will need your first few days in the new home, such as clothes for a few days, sheets and pillows, toiletries, medications, etc.

Good luck with the move! If you still need to sell and/or buy in Glencoe, Winnetka, Highland Park, Deerfield, Northbrook, Lake Forest, Wilmette, Evanston, Glenview, Riverwoods, Bannockburn, and other North Shore communities, I am here to help! Contact me, your North Shore real estate agent, for help accomplishing your real estate goals this summer!

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Winnetka Real Estate Market Stats for June 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 179 properties actively on the market with the average price of $1,651,899 in Winnetka.

City Sold Listings: 29 properties closed last month in Winnetka with an average sales price of $1,376,434. The average time on market for these properties was 69 days. 



To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Northbrook Real Estate Market Stats for June 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 431 properties actively on the market with the average price of $638,613 in Northbrook.

City Sold Listings: 91 properties closed last month in Northbrook with an average sales price of $540,580. The average time on market for these properties was 56 days. 


To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please view the Northbrook market statistics

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Highland Park Real Estate Market Stats for June 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 403 properties actively on the market with the average price of $799,980 in Highland Park.

City Sold Listings: 51 properties closed last month in Highland Park with an average sales price of $509,380. The average time on market for these properties was 72 days. 


To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please view the Highland Park market statistics

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Glencoe Real Estate Market Stats for June 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 97 properties actively on the market with the average price of 1,342,893 in Glencoe.

City Sold Listings: 12 properties closed last month in Glencoe with an average sales price of $1,018,083. The average time on market for these properties was 48 days. 


To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please view the Glencoe market statistics

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Deerfield Real Estate Market Stats for June 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 197 properties actively on the market with the average price of $577,180 in Deerfield.

City Sold Listings: 54 properties closed last month in Deerfield with an average sales price of $435,327. The average time on market for these properties was 43 days. 


To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please view the Deerfield market statistics

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Is It Time to Upsize or Downsize Your North Shore Home?


If you are a current North Shore homeowner or renter, now may be the time to consider if your living space is suitable for your current and future needs. This summer is a great time to sell your North Shore home, as buyer demand is high and prices have continued to increase at a steady rate. It’s also a great time to buy again after you sell, because mortgage rates have remained low!

As your North Shore real estate agent, I understand that homeowners and renters sometimes have to move, even if they love their home, so that it better fits their needs. If you’re considering a relocation in Glencoe, Winnetka, Highland Park, Deerfield, Northbrook, Lake Forest, Wilmette, Evanston, Glenview, Riverwoods, Bannockburn, and other North Shore communities, now is the time to contact me and get started!

If you’re not sure if you need to upsize or downsize your home, here are some questions to ask:

1.  Is there enough space for you? If you have a growing family, you may have started to notice that your kids are outgrowing their shared bedrooms, or that the kitchen or dining space feels crammed at mealtime.  If your family is continuing to grow, your North Shore home may need to grow, too.

2.  Is there too much space for you? On the other hand, perhaps you are retired or will soon be retiring, and your adult children have moved out. Your home is bigger than you know what to do with. If the stairs are becoming a nuisance, or the cleaning seems endless, it may be time to downsize.

3.  Is the yard too big or small? Buyers are seeking outdoor space, so if you have a growing family, with either kids or pets, you may be wanting a larger yard to enjoy. If you’re thinking of downsizing, keeping up with the mowing and gardening in your large yard might feel like too much work now.

4.  Could you use a location improvement? If you are growing your family, you may be seeking a new location with a more family-friendly neighborhood, community amenities, safety and better schools. If downsizing, you may be seeking a location closer to family or in walking distance to restaurants, stores or public transportation.

5.  Has your financial situation changed? If you recently got a better paying job or a promotion, you may be ready to move up to a bigger, better home. If you recently lost a job or had an unforeseen expense arise, or you’re retiring and want to do some traveling, you may be wanting to lower your mortgage.

Our needs are constantly changing in life, so it’s only normal for our real estate needs to change as well! If you think you might be ready to upsize or downsize your North Shore home soon, give me a call. As your North Shore real estate agent, I can answer your questions, help you sell, and help you find a home in Glencoe, Winnetka, Highland Park, Deerfield, Northbrook, Lake Forest, Wilmette, Evanston, Glenview, Riverwoods, Bannockburn, and other North Shore communities, that better suits your current and future needs!
     
Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Winnetka Real Estate Market Stats for May 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 183 properties actively on the market with the average price of $1,634,675 in Winnetka.

City Sold Listings: 24 properties closed last month in Winnetka with an average sales price of $1,559,466. The average time on market for these properties was 87 days. 



To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Northbrook Real Estate Market Stats for May 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 417 properties actively on the market with the average price of $657,355 in Northbrook.

City Sold Listings: 85 properties closed last month in Northbrook with an average sales price of $511,260. The average time on market for these properties was 41 days. 


To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please view the Northbrook market statistics

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Highland Park Real Estate Market Stats for May 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 379 properties actively on the market with the average price of $810,214 in Highland Park.

City Sold Listings: 47 properties closed last month in Highland Park with an average sales price of $438,000. The average time on market for these properties was 61 days. 


To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please view the Highland Park market statistics

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Glencoe Real Estate Market Stats for May 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 98 properties actively on the market with the average price of $1,372,553 in Glencoe.

City Sold Listings: 16 properties closed last month in Glencoe with an average sales price of $855,031. The average time on market for these properties was 99 days. 


To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please view the Glencoe market statistics

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Deerfield Real Estate Market Stats for May 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 192 properties actively on the market with the average price of $604,027 in Deerfield.

City Sold Listings: 44 properties closed last month in Deerfield with an average sales price of $485,001. The average time on market for these properties was 51 days. 


To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please view the Deerfield market statistics

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Benefits of Down Payment for North Shore Homebuyers

When it comes to buying a home in Glencoe, Winnetka, Highland Park, Deerfield, Northbrook, Lake Forest, Wilmette, Evanston, Glenview, Riverwoods, Bannockburn, and other North Shore communities, there are many options for mortgage loans! North Shore homebuyers can shop around for a mortgage loan and see what works best for them and their finances.

As your North Shore real estate agent, I’m here to offer you some general information on your down payment options. There are many programs out there now that allow to you put down as little as 3 or 5 percent on a North Shore home. With VA loans for veterans, you don’t need any down payment.

These programs are wonderful for families who do not have 20 percent saved for a home, as they can start building wealth sooner as North Shore homeowners.  However, if you do have a large sum of money saved for a down payment, or you can save one soon, it might be worth it.
Here are some benefits of the traditional 20 percent down payment:

1.  You don’t have to pay private mortgage insurance (PMI), which may be the biggest benefit of all. With less than 20 percent down, PMI is usually required as an insurance policy that protects the lender if you’re unable to pay your mortgage. This monthly fee is combined with your mortgage payment, making the amount you pay each month increase until you pay it off. This is not money you see again, so if you can avoid it, it’s best.

2.  Your interest rate will be lower. If you put down 20 percent on a home, your loan is seen as less risky than a loan with only 3 or 5 percent down. Therefore, you will most likely be offered a better rate, which means less money that you have to pay over time. This also means lower monthly mortgage payments over the life of your loan.

3.  You’ll pay less for your home. All of this combined means that the more you put down initially, the less you’ll pay over time, and the lower your monthly payments will be. The less you put down, the more interest you’ll be paying, and the higher your payments will be. 

4.  Your offer will stand out. It’s a competitive market, with inventory of homes for sale lower than average. This means that having a higher down payment will make you stand out to sellers, as they will have more confidence that the deal will go through because your financial situation is positive.

As you can see, if you can make a 20 percent down payment, you should. Usually current homeowners can use 20 percent from the sale of their current home for the purchase of their next home. For first-time buyers, it’s harder and not uncommon to put less than 20 percent down.

Every buyer situation is different, so your best bet is to meet with a local mortgage lender and discuss your options! When ready to buy in the North Shore real estate market, give me a call! As your North Shore real estate agent, I can help you find the home of your dreams that fits your budget!

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Glencoe Real Estate Market Stats for April 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 93 properties actively on the market with the average price of $1,333,089 in Glencoe.

City Sold Listings: 24 properties closed last month in Glencoe with an average sales price of $1,130,813. The average time on market for these properties was 78 days. 


To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please view the Glencoe market statistics

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Highland Park Real Estate Market Stats for April 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 353 properties actively on the market with the average price of $794,192 in Highland Park.

City Sold Listings: 52 properties closed last month in Highland Park with an average sales price of $573,157. The average time on market for these properties was 76 days. 


To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please view the Highland Park market statistics

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Winnetka Real Estate Market Stats for April 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 190 properties actively on the market with the average price of $1,652,871 in Winnetka.

City Sold Listings: 30 properties closed last month in Winnetka with an average sales price of $1,462,219. The average time on market for these properties was 91 days. 



To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Deerfield Real Estate Market Stats for April 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 179 properties actively on the market with the average price of $614,169 in Deerfield.

City Sold Listings: 44 properties closed last month in Deerfield with an average sales price of $475,659. The average time on market for these properties was 48 days. 


To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please view the Deerfield market statistics

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!

Northbrook Real Estate Market Stats for April 2019

City Active Listings: There are a total of 397 properties actively on the market with the average price of $647,712 in Northbrook.

City Sold Listings: 56 properties closed last month in Northbrook with an average sales price of $496,479. The average time on market for these properties was 57 days. 


To view the complete report including additional detailed data, charts ad graphs, please view the Northbrook market statistics

Janie Bress
Your North Shore Real Estate Expert


North Shore Real Estate
View North Shore Listings
Visit My Website


Local Expert... with National Connections!