Archive for March 2016

When A Mortgage Pre-Approval Is Not Worth The Paper It's Printed On

When A Mortgage Pre-Approval Is Not Worth The Paper It's Printed On
Many people, but not everyone, are aware of this but when submitting an offer to buy a home the buyer really should provide a pre-approval letter from a lender that basically says they look good for getting a mortgage for the purchase price less the down payment – assuming the buyer is going to be... Read more »

Case Shiller: Chicago Area Home Price Gains Rank Last Among Major Metros

Case Shiller: Chicago Area Home Price Gains Rank Last Among Major Metros
This morning’s release of S&P’s January Case Shiller Home Price index once again shows Chicago in dead last place among 20 metro areas in terms of year over year home price increases. In fact, Chicago’s year over year gains actually declined from the December numbers. Check out the historical graph below which shows that Chicago... Read more »

Are Chicago's Ukrainian/ East Village Really America's Hottest Neighborhoods?

Are Chicago's Ukrainian/ East Village Really America's Hottest Neighborhoods?
Ever since I moved to Chicago’s East Village almost 4 years ago I’ve been writing about how hot the neighborhood (including Ukrainian Village) is: Hot Chicago Real Estate Markets: East Village And Ukrainian Village. The way I demonstrated it back then was by looking at the trend in median sales prices and also the amount... Read more »
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Chicago Crime: Where The Criminals Live And Home Prices

Chicago Crime: Where The Criminals Live And Home Prices
About once a year (usually during the peak crime season) I do a couple of blog posts on Chicago crime and which neighborhoods are the most dangerous. My last one was in July: Chicago’s Most Dangerous Neighborhoods: Assault And Battery. These posts focus on where most of the crimes occur and I’ve often noted the... Read more »

RealtyTrac Market Report: Chicago Foreclosure Auctions Surge

RealtyTrac Market Report: Chicago Foreclosure Auctions Surge
As I mentioned last month RealtyTrac is not releasing their normal Foreclosure Market Report for February. However, they did just release their updated data which shows that Chicago foreclosure auctions surged last month and you can see how dramatic this is in the graph below. The yellow area represents the auction activity and it’s up... Read more »

Strange Home Prices In Chicago's Ukrainian/ East Village

Strange Home Prices In Chicago's Ukrainian/ East Village
About a month ago I wrote about how I often see very odd price variations between different home sales in Chicago that leave me scratching my head. Over the last year I’ve seen 3 single family home sales in my own neighborhood of Ukrainian and East Village that seem very strange so I thought I’d... Read more »
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Chicago Real Estate Market: Inventory Rising In Lake View And North Center

Chicago Real Estate Market: Inventory Rising In Lake View And North Center
In my Chicago real estate market update for February (on Monday) I repeated the well worn refrain that home inventory continues to hit new and ridiculous lows. However, as you know from reading this blog, averages can be very misleading and the home inventory situation is a perfect example. It turns out that the inventory... Read more »

Chicago Real Estate Market Update: Home Sales Flat

Chicago Real Estate Market Update: Home Sales Flat
Despite some real hopeful signs in January that the Chicago real estate market might be picking up some steam February was basically a dud. Now, technically, February home sales were 5.5% higher than last year but that’s with an extra day in February this year – it’s leap year, remember? If we adjust the sales... Read more »

Chicago Real Estate Investing 103: Don't Be Fooled By Comps

Chicago Real Estate Investing 103: Don't Be Fooled By Comps
Everyone knows that when you want to determine the value of a property you “run the comps”, which basically means you look for similar properties that have sold or are for sale as the basis for putting a value on another property that you are interested in either buying or selling. It’s a very appealing... Read more »
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The Right And Wrong Way To Get A Real Estate Commission Rebate

The Right And Wrong Way To Get A Real Estate Commission Rebate
Yesterday I posted on real estate commission rebates, which are apparently the best kept secret in the real estate industry. Assuming you want to get a rebate on the purchase of your home you need to know that there is a right way and a wrong way to go about doing this. The absolutely wrong... Read more »