HOME BUYER FAQ: How much money will I have to come up with to buy a home?

home buyer faq graphic

HOME BUYER FAQ:  How much money will I need to buy a home?

Answer:  It depends on several of factors, such as the price of the home, the type of mortgage you get, and what seller concessions are negotiated in your purchase agreement. In general, you will need to have enough money to cover the cost of (1) earnest money, (2) down payment, and (3) closing costs (the seller can pay all or most of your closing costs, depending on the loan).

What You Need To Know About Radon In Your Home

radon gas illustration

January has been designated as National Radon Action Month by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). To support the efforts of the EPA, we wanted to take the opportunity to provide you with some useful information about radon gas in your home, how much is considered dangerous to your health, and what you should do about it.

How Long Does It Take To Close a Home Sale in the Chicago Area?

Shaking hands outside of new home

In the Chicagoland area, how long does it take to complete a sale once you agree to a purchase contract?  

Some transactions take longer than others to get from signed contract to closing table for various reasons.  Most of them having to do with the buyer securing financing, but other items may add to the timeline like issues arising from inspections, title deficiencies, and any number of unexpected matters.

In the Chicagoland area, the average time from accepted contract to closing per month in 2017 was as follows:

How To Make A Strong Offer That Gets Accepted

Happy buyers holding up sign that says 'we got the house'

Housing inventory in Chicago and the Chicagoland suburbs remains low, making our local residential real estate market a seller’s market. Well-priced homes in desirable locations are selling quickly, and in some instances, receiving multiple offers.

In this climate, making a stronger offer than other buyers will make all the difference. Your agent will guide you through the process and help you create the strongest possible offer within your comfort zone and affordability limits.

Homeownership Rates for the 'Under 35's' is Increasing

Buyers shaking hands with real estate agent

According to a recent Bloomberg report, millennials want to own their own homes, and in increasing numbers would like to live in the suburbs. They’re getting married and having children later than their parents did, but they are starting to “cross barriers typically associated with buying,” Bloomberg reports.

Approximately one-third of home purchases are made by millennials who are making the leap from renting to owning their own home.

GOOD NEWS! Fannie Mae Announces Significant Changes to Help People With Student Debt

Learn about the significant changes made by Fannie Mae to help people burdened with student debt qualify for home loans.  Many first-time home buyers will be affected by these changes.  

If you have been turned down for a home loan in the past because your debt-to-income ratio was too high, Fannie Mae just announced it has raised the DTI ratio from 45% to 50%.  If you can document that someone else is making your student loan payments, say your parents or your employer, Fannie Mae will no longer count it toward your DTI.

Moving From Renting To Owning - What You Need To Know

Home buyers walking arm in arm in park

Purchasing your first home is a major life — and financial — milestone. After weeks or months of going through the search process and tempering your expectations to market realities, you get to sign on the dotted line and, at long last, join the ranks of homeowners.

But before you do, it’s important to keep in mind all of the changes that come along with homeownership. Owning a home involves a lot more than sending your monthly payment to a different address. There are a few more considerations to make before taking the plunge.

The Many Ways Homeownership Affects Your Taxes

home ownership and taxes, what you need to know

Whether your home is a house, condominium, cooperative apartment, mobile home, houseboat, or house trailer that contains sleeping space and toilet and cooking facilities, there are things you should know about home ownership and how it affects your taxes.

Things like how you treat items such as settlement and closing costs, real estate taxes, sales taxes, home mortgage interest, and repairs. There are items related to buying, selling, moving, and owning a home that you can and cannot deduct on your tax return.