February 10, 2010

The Short Sale Process Part 2 ? New Regulations Mean an Easier Process

The Short Sale Process Part 2 ? New Regulations Mean an Easier Process

In the first half of this article we ran through one possible short sale scenario. The goal was to establish a need for short sale regulation. The focus of this second part is to discuss the Treasury Departments imminent guidelines. On April 5th the Treasury Department’s new Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives Program (HAFA) will take […]

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February 9, 2010

5% Down Payments Available Again

5% Down Payments Available Again

The word is out in the real estate world…I’m hearing the question all the time from agents. Katie Anderson recently asked me, “I’ve heard that only a 5% down payment on condos is coming back. Neena is this true?”¬†Yes these low down payment loans ares coming back into the market?guidelines are loosening up! The New […]

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February 8, 2010

The Short Sale Process Part 1 – How to Hit a Bull’s Eye While Blind Folded

The Short Sale Process Part 1 – How to Hit a Bull’s Eye While Blind Folded

The question I come across regarding short sales involves an uncertainty of the length of time it will take to navigate this process successfully to the end. Unfortunately the answer can be equated to the number of licks it takes to get to the center of a Tootsie-Pop.

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February 5, 2010

New Signs of the Dinosaurs

New Signs of the Dinosaurs

Every once in a while I like to go back and revisit old posts and see if there are still relevant or thoughts of the moment. This post still rings true and truer for both buyers and sellers: Telltale Signs Your Listing Broker is a Dinosaur. Meeting with new clients recently, I have been getting […]

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February 4, 2010

Waiting for The Recovery? Don’t Forget the Compass Point

Waiting for The Recovery? Don’t Forget the Compass Point

While we all sit here in Chicago and wait for the economy to rebound, I often wonder, “What is the hold up?” There are many answers to that very simple question. Because I am an appraiser as well as a broker, I do get some different insight that others miss out on. I have been […]

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February 4, 2010

Condotel…A Property By Many Names

Condotel…A Property By Many Names

Condo? Hotel? Timeshare? The uncertain economy and downturn in the real estate market have driven developers to create unique projects. Chicago has seen several “condotel,” developments, where units are sold fully furnished and come with daily maid service. Building amenities resemble those of hotels, and owners can use the units themselves or rent them through […]

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February 2, 2010

Fannie Mae Announces New 3.5% Buyer Incentive

Fannie Mae Announces New 3.5% Buyer Incentive

Fannie Mae (FNM/NYSE) announced today that they are offering a 3.5% incentive* for buyers who purchase and close on a Fannie Mae-owned home between January 28th, 2010 and April 30, 2010. Buyers purchasing properties listed on their HomePath.com site, that are closed within this period may receive up to 3.5% of the final sales price […]

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December 17, 2009

Zillow Makes Serious Challenge to Realtor.com and MLS Online

Zillow Makes Serious Challenge to Realtor.com and MLS Online

Zillow is trying to compete with the Big Boys – the Multiple Listing Service and Realtor.com. But does Zillow have the tools and the reputation to make inroads in this competitive online market?

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December 10, 2009

HVCC Procedures and Misinformed Appraisers Delay Closings

HVCC Procedures and Misinformed Appraisers Delay Closings

I have seen both a good side and a bad side to the Home Valuation Code of Conduct program and have been lobbying for change. Well, today I saw first hand the debacle HVCC has created in the Real Estate world.

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December 2, 2009

Conventional Loan Ceilings Hinder Chicagoland Economy

Conventional Loan Ceilings Hinder Chicagoland Economy

We can help spur the economy here in Chicago if conventional loan limits were increased. By raising them, buyers in the market just above $417,000 would need less money down and benefit from the record low interest rates.

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November 23, 2009

October Housing Numbers: First Time Home Buyer Tax Credit Drives Market

October Housing Numbers: First Time Home Buyer Tax Credit Drives Market

As seen in previous months, home buyers have pushed the market by taking advantage of historically low interest rates, 2004 pricing and the first time home buyer tax credit. Yet home prices continue to be soft because of distressed properties and competition with other properties in this higher inventory market.

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November 17, 2009

Neighborhood Anxiety: Foreclosures, Short Sales, and Your Property Value

Neighborhood Anxiety: Foreclosures, Short Sales, and Your Property Value

Many homeowners have very valid concerns about the impact of a neighbor who has a comparable unit but is selling their property at a rock bottom price. When a neighbor sells at a very low price because of a new baby, job transfer, or other situation, the impact on the immediate market value of comparable units can be significant, but not necessarily devastating.

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November 16, 2009

Optimism for Winter Buyers, But Why Are Some Listings Being Pulled?

Optimism for Winter Buyers, But Why Are Some Listings Being Pulled?

I don?t understand why some agents are taking their listings off the market until after the new year. According to the Illinois Association of Realtors, 37% of home buyers are new to Chicago. Nearly half of these home buyers are first-timers who are eager to cash in on the federal tax credit.

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