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Finding the perfect Chicago home.

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Finding the perfect Chicago home.
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5 Important Rules for Buying in Low Inventory Chicago Real Estate Market
Prepare to be the winning bidder!
26,October

Clients looking to purchase real estate in into popular Chicago neighborhoods are feeling the sting of higher prices. Pair that challenge with that with record-low inventories, and it’s easy to become somewhat frustrated with the home-buying process, as homes can sell before a buyer has the chance to pick up the phone.

While the Chicago real estate market does pose challenges at this time, there are five simple rules that can make the difference between an accepted offer and the losing out on the “perfect” home or condo multiple times:

 

1. Be first

 

Its naïve to think that your favorite home isn’t also the favorite of other buyers. For that reason, you must do what it takes to see it first. If a new listing comes up, I always recommend that buyers make themselves available during lunch hour on the first day. Buying a home is a big decision, and seeing it first gives you a head start to give it the proper thought before making a move. The sooner you decide you want to make an offer, the better, and programs like Docusign can help move the process along quickly to get your offer written and submitted.

 

2. Present a clean offer

 

Sellers are looking for purchase offers with “no strings attached.” That means the offer doesn’t include things like contingencies or requests for closing cost credits. Mortgage contingencies may be more accepted, but should still be kept as short as possible. If another buyer comes along with a cash bid and no mortgage contingencies, that’s a strong offer to go up against. Moving faster than the other buyers is the only way to minimize the chance of being in that situation. It’s also important to note that, in writing an offer that is as clean as possible, a potential buyer should never relinquish time for attorney modification or inspections, as these are important protections on the buyer’s end.

 

3. Offer the fastest close

 

Before you start your house hunt, decide up front how soon you are willing to close and communicate that to your realtor. If you don’t want to maintain a vacant property, you may be trying to line up your closing date with your move-out of your current property. But if that timeline is 45 days or more, you should consider the options for closing sooner. The cost of an empty house might be worthy it for a short time. Most sellers are also making a purchase of their own and won’t wait for a close date that delays their own transaction.

 

4. Know what you want

 

Some buyers are very cautious by nature, and they want to perform their due diligence and spend some time mulling over the decision to make an offer on a home. But while you’re daydreaming about what it might be like to cook in your new kitchen, it’s likely that someone else is writing an offer. The best way to prepare yourself to shorten your decision-making time for a home is to write down your needs and wants beforehand. Share that list with your realtor, and a good agent will help you measure your criteria against each property so you can plainly see how it stacks up.

 

5. Partner with a mortgage broker that can deliver and has a good reputation

 

If you are a cash buyer, this might not apply to you. But if you’re looking at conventional financing, this can’t be stressed enough: Get pre-approved with a reputable lender. It is important to work with someone that knows exactly how to deliver on time and communicate with other parties in a constructive way. The seller’s agent will probably counsel their seller on the reputation of the lender when evaluating your offer. This point cannot be understated. Using a family member or friend with little experience could be detrimental to landing your dream home, so I recommend asking your realtor or real estate attorney for referrals. I personally have a handful of vetted loan officers that I trust.

So, that’s it—a short list of things to consider in this challenging, low-inventory market . While it may sound intimidating, it really is an exciting process. Partnering with the right agent and real estate team will find you the right home. If you are looking for a seasoned professional to work with, I am always available at 312.451.8894. Happy house hunting!




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