• Buying a Home,  Fall,  Selling a Home

    Home Buying and Selling Tips for Fall

    HGTV’s real estate site Front Door says the weeks between now and the end-of-the year holidays are the best ones to find a bargain. Here are some of their tips for fall buyers and sellers:   Fall Sellers: · Replace faded summer plants with fall-blooming flowers and add autumn decorations to the home. · Expect low-ball offers and be prepared with higher counter offers. · Freshen up listing photos by shooting pictures that make it less obvious that the seasons have changed. · Price the home to sell. A price that is a little lower than the competition may be a winning move. · Be willing to show the property…

  • Buying a Home

    10 Reasons to Buy a Home

    Time magazine is being overly pessimistic in its recent cover piece that called into question the benefits of homeownership. In fact, now is a great time to buy. And, what’s more, tomorrow will be a great time to own, because the fundamental strength of homeownership hasn’t changed. Why is now a great time to buy? Here are 10 reasons: 1. You can get a good deal. Prices are down 30 percent on average. They’re at a level that makes sense for people’s income. 2. Mortgages are cheap. At 4.3 percent on average for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage, your costs to own are down by a fifth from two years ago.…

  • Buying a Home

    The Pros and Cons of Corner Properties

      Some people see a corner lot as an asset, but an equal number believe it is a liability. Pluses of these properties include more flexible design options, shorter driveways, sunnier interiors, and more on-street parking. The negatives are a small and not-very-private backyard, more noise, more streetlights and headlights, and a greater need to look out for dogs and children. Additional maintenance demands, which bring higher costs, discourage some would-be buyers of corner properties, said Steve Hovany, president of Schaumburg’s Strategy Planning Associates, a real estate planning consultancy. But some buyers like corner homes anyway. A corner home “is a rare home,” said Ray Hartshorne, partner with Chicago’s Hartshorne…