Buying a Home in the Summer? Use These Tips

Any Chicagoan will agree that there is nothing like a Chi-Town summer- from the sunny Saturdays spent lounging on the beach to the constant energy felt among the city streets.

Not only does the city come alive during this sunny season, but the real estate market heats up as well.

Take advantage of the hot Chicago market and consider buying a home in the summer.

Buying a Home in the Summer

Summer house hunters are bound to find plenty of listings on the market to choose from. While the number of listings dwindles a bit from the springtime, this means that many buyers will see price drops or sellers will be more likely to negotiate for a better deal.

If you have a family, summer makes for the ideal time to move, before the new school year starts up. It allows kids to adjust to a new home and relax before classes are back in session.

Additionally, many leases tend to end at the beginning of summer, providing the perfect window of opportunity for first time home buyers.

Selling a Home in the Summer

While spring is known as the peak season in the world of real estate, the summer is still a great time to sell. According to Realtor.com, the summer months account for 50 percent of homes sold.

Although the real estate rush slows down after May, rest assured that there are still plenty of house hunters on the market during the summer. Furthermore, many of those buyers are serious and extremely motivated to close before the end of summer, before the cold and school start up again.

Summertime weather also ensures high-quality photos and much better showings than the gloomy seasons. The constant sunshine and landscaping in full bloom always help with the presentation.

Summer Moving Tips

The Luxury Living team has compiled a few pointers to keep in mind if you plan on moving during a toasty Chicago summer:

  • Hire a professional agent– To fully take advantage of the summer market, utilize an experienced broker to help narrow down the best housing options and secure the best possible price.
  • Move in the middle of the summer– The beginning and end of summer consistently prove the busiest times to move. Avoiding the craziest times will alleviate the stress of finding available moving trucks and empty elevators.
  • Prepare for the heat– During the moving process, be prepared for high temperatures and intense sun. Dress appropriately, stay hydrated, and layer on that sunscreen.

If you are ready for a new place and think you can handle the heat, consider buying or selling a home in the summer. Don’t let this hot summer selling season pass you by.

How to Go About Buying or Selling a Home in the Winter

The Chicago winters are a great time to bundle up, prepare for the holidays, and enjoy the plenty of restaurants. This season also makes for a fantastic time to buy or sell a home in the Windy City.

Buying or selling a home in the winter proves to be a smart move for both parties, and the Luxury Living team is here to tell you why.

Buying a Home in the Winter

Whether you are in the market for your first house or a new place to call home, consider buying your dream place in the winter.

Although winter may not be the most popular time to house hunt, this proves beneficial to buyers. The winter season provides the most affordable time to close on a new place.

With fewer people shopping for homes during the winter, competition is limited. This minimized competition means lower demand, which also helps keep the housing prices down.

Not only are there fewer buyers during the winter, but there are also fewer houses on the market. While this reduces buyers’ options, it helps keep the listing prices down.

Also, be aware that purchasing a house at the end of the year will provide significant tax benefits. If you close on a house before the new year, you can deduct closing costs, mortgage interest, and property taxes. Additionally, interest rates are generally lower before the new year.

Why Sell in Winter

The winter also makes for an ideal time to sell your property.

With a smaller pool of houses for sale during the winter, sellers have less competition as well. Naturally, with less competition, homes can be listed and sold for higher prices than during busy seasons.

A study conducted by online brokerage Redfin found that average sellers net more above asking price during December, January, February, and March. The same study also revealed that homes listed during the winter months sell faster than those listed in the spring.

Winter Moving Tips

Moving in the winter is a wise financial move, but it may also present some challenges.

To alleviate some of the stress associated with the Windy City winters here are a few moving tips:

  • Hire professional movers- We promise this is an investment that will prove worthwhile. Save yourself the time, trouble, and cold by allowing moving experts to take on the task.
  • Keep an eye on the forecast- Monitor the weather leading up to moving day to make sure there’s not an unexpected storm on the way. If the radar isn’t looking too promising you may want to adjust your moving schedule.
  • Find an experienced broker– Teaming up with a real estate and Chicago expert can help ease and speed up the process and make the transition easier.

Don’t let the cold keep you from buying or selling a home in the winter. Get in touch with a broker and begin the process today!

What’s the Best Time of the Year to Buy a Home?

Timing is crucial- especially when it comes to buying a home.

While there are plenty of factors to consider when purchasing a property, timing can drastically affect the market, which directly impacts your purchase.  

The Luxury Living team is here to help provide insight into determining the best time of year to buy a home.

Here’s the Best Time of Year to Buy a Condo in Chicago

If you are considering purchasing a condo in the Windy City, it is vital to figure out the best time of year to begin your house hunting to ensure a strategic and worthwhile investment.

While there is no perfect formula for timing your condo purchase, there are certain seasonal trends that help indicate the ideal time to buy.

For young home buyers, or anyone looking to save money, the winter months, specifically January and February, may be the best time to make an offer. Numbers show that average condo price drop around $6,000 in the winter, compared to the late spring and summer.

If buyers are more concerned with options rather than price, springtime generally proves to be a better time to house hunt. This season tends to offer Chicagoans with the highest number of housing listings to choose from. Just keep in mind that with more competition on the market, springtime tends to increase the price of listings. March through May are the months that homes find themselves selling for record high prices.

While condos are a hot housing option in a large city, we can’t forget about the single-family homes. If you’ are curious when the best time to start browsing for this home type, the rule of thumb is generally the same as condo purchases.

Once you are ready to pull the trigger and buy a property in Chicago, keep in mind that this journey may take a while. The entire process, from beginning the house search to closing on your purchase, can take anywhere from three to six months; or even longer if issues arise.

While the house hunting period depends largely on the efficiency of the buyers and agent, the average closing period in Chicago hovers around 45 days.

How to Go About Buying or Selling a Home in the Winter

While the Chicago winter is a time of holiday hustle and bustle and frigid temperatures, don’t let this deter you from buying or selling your home.

With the wintertime proving to be a wise time to buy a home, consider using this season to find your dream home.

While buying a home in the winter is often the most affordable time to purchase a property, keep in mind that listing options are not as abundant during this season. The smaller pool of homes helps keep the listing prices down but also limits your selection.

The winter is also an excellent time for people looking to sell their property, especially because of the tax benefits. Buying and selling in the winter allow both parties to apply credits or claims on taxes before the new year.

Moving during the Chicago winter is a wise financial move, but it may also present some challenges.

To alleviate some of the stress associated with the Windy City winters here are a few moving tips:

  • Hire professional movers- We promise this is an investment that will prove worth it. Save yourself the time, trouble, and cold by allowing moving experts to take on the task.
  • Keep an eye on the forecast- Monitor the weather leading up to moving day to make sure there is not an unexpected storm on the way. If the radar isn’t looking very promising you may want to adjust your moving schedule.
  • Find an experienced broker– Teaming up with a real estate and Chicago expert can help ease and speed up the process.

Why You Should Consider Selling or Buying a Home in the Fall

The fall season is another promising time to consider selling or buying a home. During this time the normal market typically sees a second “rush” of buyers, especially as many leases come to an end, schools start back up, and people want to buy or sell before the winter comes.

Typically the real estate market stays pretty strong, until about October when it starts to slow down. Therefore, if you are considering listing your home in the fall, be sure to begin the sale early to increase the odds and timeline of a closing.

If your home has a nice amount of outdoor space, keep in mind that as the season begins to approach winter, your landscaping may start to die. You want to try and capture buyers attention while your outside is still pretty.

Tips for Buying or Selling a Home in Spring

Springtime in Chicago often proves to be a busy time in the world of real estate. Many sellers like to wait for the winter to pass until they list their property. Vice versa, many buyers also hold off searching for the dream house until the weather clears up and more listings pop up on on the market.

The main appeal for home buyers to shop in the spring is the listing options. This season tends to boast a variety of housing options, providing house hunters with endless choices and the opportunity to be more selective.

While buyers have the advantage of a wide selection, they should also be prepared to pay more competitive prices. If you end up finding a home during the spring, make sure to work closely with a licensed broker to help find a suitable property in your budget and negotiate a fair closing cost.

While these higher listing prices may deter some potential buyers on a budget, this competitive market tends to entice sellers. With so many properties for sale, sellers can list their house for the highest and best dollar. The nicer spring weather also enhances properties’ curb appeal and online pictures, which further helps attract potential buyers.

Buying a Home in the Summer? Use These Tips

There is nothing like a Chi-town summer. Not only is this the perfect time to explore Chicago, but it also makes for a great season to buy a home for yourself.

Summer house hunters are bound to find plenty of listings on the market to choose from. While the number dwindles a bit from the Springtime, this means that buyers will likely see price drops or sellers will be more willing to negotiate.

To fully take advantage of the hot summer market, be sure to utilize a broker to help narrow down the best house options and ensure you get the best possible price. Don’t forget that during this season you are likely to pay less than the asking price.

The summer is also a suitable time to put your house on the market if you are ready to sell. While your home may not sell as fast as it would in the Spring, the likelihood of a contract is still very high. Just be prepared for interested buyers to negotiate during this time of year.

As a seller, also keep in mind that the beautiful summer weather helps ensure better quality photos and better showings than during the gloomy seasons.

With a greater understanding of the Chicago seasons and how they impact the housing market, hopefully you feel more confident determining the best time of the year to buy a home.If this season is right for you, contact an experienced broker to help you find your dream home today!

10 Tips to Know Before Buying in Chicago

Luxury Living Chicago Realty’s brokers are here to help with your home search every step of the way. Every team member is dedicated to providing personalized, professional, and prompt service. Our experienced agents share insights and recommendations of proven partners, including lenders, inspectors, and attorneys. We’ll ensure exceptional service for all your real estate needs. If you’re just getting started with the buying process, we’ve rounded up 10 helpful tips from our team:

Getting Started

#1) “Start early and take your time. Chicago’s housing market has limited inventory and if you’re trying to time a lease you could get stuck with a home you either don’t love, or worse, have to move into your parent’s basement. While overlapping rent and mortgage can pose a short-term challenge, the long-term benefits are almost always worth it.” – Jake Tasharki

#2) “Make sure you speak to a lender first and foremost.  It’s imperative to speak to the “financial part of the equation first.”  Ask someone you know what lender they have used.  Ask your current real estate agent who he recommends.  I’d recommend comparing both lenders; your friend/family referral and your agents’ recommendation.  Tell the agent in layman’s terms your ideal plan because  not everyone is destined for 10% with a 30 year loan.  Lenders also have first-time buyer programs and they view you as a long-term client.  Get a feeling for pricing and budget and then go to your real estate agent.  Much easier if you tell your real estate agent your budget then them telling you what it should be.” – Sam Kahn

#3) “Don’t let a large down payment scare you from becoming a homeowner. Many people are unaware that you can buy a home with a down payment of less than 20%. There are lenders that offer loans with down payments of 5% or less. It is important to discuss your budget and goals with your lender to see all of the loan options available and determine what will work best for your situation. If a buyer puts less than 20% down they will be responsible for Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) which is an additional expense that certainly needs to be considered, but even with PMI the numbers will often make sense for buyers that would otherwise be priced out.” – Riely Joosten

Remember the Big Picture

#4) “Make your mark. Remember that this will be your own home, so little cosmetic things can be changed to your liking: paint, counters, cabinets, doors, flooring etc. can become a statement of your personality and taste so do not let a bright or ugly color deter you from a solid investment opportunity.” – Spencer Terry

#5) “Be realistic. Take a deep look into your long-term financial and personal goals to see if buying makes sense. Your first home purchase will most likely not be your last and while it doesn’t need to be your dream home, make sure you are planning ahead with a home that will suit your needs 3-5+ years down the road.” – Travis Smith

#6) “Don’t write off small improvements as large and costly projects. No home is perfect and everyone has different tastes. If the home is very appealing to many buyers you can bet you’re going to pay a premium. Part of the fun in being a homeowner is putting your stamp on your own home. Don’t pay for someone else’s upgrades, which you may not care for in the near future anyway. Things like paint, hardware, and flooring are often low cost for high impact/return.” – Jake Tasharki

Find a Team You Can Trust

#7) “Shop around and ask questions. Talk to multiple mortgage companies and real estate agents. You want to make sure you can connect on a personal level, as trust and communication are paramount when you take on the biggest purchase of your life.” – Travis Smith

#8) “Trust your resources.  A lender specializes financing.  A real estate attorney specializes it contract, disclosure, document language.  A real estate agent specializes in finding you the best home that suits your needs.  Many times my clients love working with me because I have like-minded individuals that specialized in their craft working alongside me. The more you can narrow down what information you get from certain partners throughout this process, the better.  Go to Sam for finding the home.  Go to Mike for the numbers.  Go to Adam to make sure everything legally is covered for you.  That way you can focus on falling in love with a home.” – Sam Kahn

#9) “Home-buying is a massive investment and huge undertaking so it’s important to not let your emotions take hold. Partner with a broker who will take the time to sit down with you 3-6 months ahead of time to outline your goals, the entire buying process, and current climate of the market. It’s critical to align and refine realistic parameters and a sensible budget ahead of time; otherwise you are setting yourself up for headache and heartbreak. Extra points in finding a broker that will be candid about their professional opinion even if it’s not necessarily what you want to hear.”  – Jake Tasharki

Making an Offer

#10) “When you’ve found “the one” and are ready to make an offer, consult with your broker to determine a fair opening bid. This should be based on what you believe the property is truly worth and what you can afford. Many buyers’ first instinct is to submit an offer far below market value. This strategy often offends the seller and will not work when inventory is low.” – Vanessa Kanavos

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