Realty Executives Midwest

Serving Darien, IL

Realty Executives Midwest


The Top 5 Reasons You Need a Real Estate Agent when Buying a Home

(Published on - 4/13/2024 7:01:29 PM)

The Top 5 Reasons You Need a Real Estate Agent when Buying a Home

You may have heard headlines in the news lately about agents in the real estate industry and discussions about their commissions. And if you’re following along, it can be pretty confusing. But here’s the thing you really need to know – expert advice from a trusted real estate agent is priceless, now more than ever. And here’s why.

A real estate agent does a lot more than you may realize.

Your agent is the person who will guide you through every step when buying a home and look out for your best interests along the way. They smooth out a complex process and take away the bulk of the stress of what’s likely your largest purchase ever. And that’s exactly what you want and deserve.

This is at least a part of the reason why a recent survey from Bright MLS found an overwhelming majority of people agree an agent is a key part of the homebuying process (see visual below):

 a green and grey pie chart

To give you a better idea of just a few of the top ways agents add value, check out this list.

1. Deliver Industry Experience

The right agent – the professional – will coach you through everything from start to finish. With professional training and expertise, agents know the ins and outs of the buying process. And in today’s complex market, the way real estate transactions are executed is constantly changing, so having the best advice on your side is essential.

2. Provide Expert Local Knowledge

In a world that’s powered by data, a great agent can clarify what it all means, separate fact from fiction, and help you understand how current market trends apply to your unique search. From how quickly homes are selling to the latest listings you don’t want to miss, they can explain what’s happening in your specific local market so you can make a confident decision.

3. Explain Pricing and Market Value

Agents help you understand the latest pricing trends in your area. What’s a home valued at in your market? What should you think about when you’re making an offer? Is this a house that might have issues you can’t see on the surface? No one wants to overpay, so having an expert who really gets true market value for individual neighborhoods is priceless. An offer that’s both fair and competitive in today’s housing market is essential, and a local expert knows how to help you hit the mark.

4. Review Contracts and Fine Print

In a fast-moving and heavily regulated process, agents help you make sense of the necessary disclosures and documents, so you know what you’re signing. Having a professional that’s trained to explain the details could make or break your transaction, and is certainly something you don’t want to try to figure out on your own.

5. Bring Negotiation Expertise

From offer to counteroffer and inspection to closing, there are a lot of stakeholders involved in a real estate transaction. Having someone on your side who knows you and the process makes a world of difference. An agent will advocate for you as they work with each party. It’s a big deal, and you need a partner at every turn to land the best possible outcome.

Bottom Line

Real estate agents are specialists, educators, and negotiators. They adjust to market changes and keep you informed. And keep in mind, every time you make a big decision in your life, especially a financial one, you need an expert on your side.

Expert advice from a trusted professional is priceless. Connect with a local real estate agent today. 

Source: Keeping Current Matters

Realty Executives Midwest

1310 Plainfield Rd. Ste 2 | Darien, IL 60561

Office: 630-969-8880

Your Home Is a Powerful Investment

(Published on - 4/6/2024 6:07:45 PM)

Your Home Is a Powerful Investment

Going into 2023, there was a lot of talk about a possible recession that would cause the housing market to crash. Some in the media were even forecasting home prices would drop by as much as 10-20%—and that might have made you feel a bit unsure about buying a home.

But here’s what actually happened: home prices went up more than usual. Brian D. Luke, Head of Commodities at S&P Dow Jones Indicesexplains:

“Looking back at the year, 2023 appears to have exceeded average annual home price gains over the past 35 years.”

To put last year’s growth into context, the graph below uses data from Freddie Mac on how home prices have changed each year going back to 1980. The dotted line shows the long-term average for appreciation:

 a graph showing the average of a home appreciation

The big takeaway? Home prices almost always go up.

As an article from Forbes says:

“. . . the U.S. real estate market has a long and reliable history of increasing in value over time.”

In fact, since 1980, the only time home prices dropped was during the housing market crash (shown in red in the graph above). Fortunately, the market today isn’t like it was in 2008. For starters, there aren’t enough available homes to meet buyer demand right now. On top of that, homeowners have a tremendous amount of equity, so they’re on much stronger footing than they were back then. That means there won’t be a wave of foreclosures that causes prices to fall.

The fact that home values went up every single year except those four in red is why owning a home can be one of the smartest moves you can make. When you’re a homeowner, you own something that typically becomes more valuable over time. And as your home’s value appreciates, your net worth grows

So, if you’re financially stable and prepared for the costs and expenses of homeownership, buying a home might make a lot of sense for you.

Bottom Line

Home prices almost always go up over time. That makes buying a home a smart move, if you’re ready and able. Connect with a local real estate agent to talk about your goals and what’s available in our area.

Source: Keeping Current Matters

Realty Executives Midwest

1310 Plainfield Rd. Ste 2 | Darien, IL 60561

Office: 630-969-8880

The Best Week To List Your House Is Almost Here

(Published on - 4/1/2024 7:50:29 PM)

Are you thinking about making a move? If so, now may be the perfect time to start the process. That’s because experts say the best week to list your house is just around the corner.

A recent study looked at housing market trends over the past several years (with the exception of 2020, since it was an unusual year), and found the best week to put your house on the market this year is April 14-20:

“Every year, one week stands out from the rest as that perfect stretch of time when it’s great to be a home seller. This year, the week of April 14–20 is the best time to sell—that is, if sellers want to see lots of interest in their homes, sell quickly, and pocket some extra cash, according to® data.”

Here’s why this matters for you. While the spring market is a great time to sell no matter the week, this may be the peak sweet spot. And if you’ve been putting your plans on the back burner and waiting for the right time to act, this could be the nudge you need to make your move happen. As Hannah Jones, Senior Economic Research Analyst at explains:

“The third week of April brings the best combination of housing market factors for sellers. The best week offers higher buyer demand, lower competition [from other sellers], and fewer price reductions than the typical week of the year.”

But, if you want to get in on the action, you’ll need to move quickly and lean on the pros. Your local real estate agent is the perfect go-to when it comes to figuring out a plan to prep your house and get it on the market.

They’ll be able to offer advice to balance your target listing date with what you need to do from a repair and renovation standpoint. And they can walk you through exactly how to prioritize your list so you know what to tackle first.

For example, if your house is already in good shape, you’ll be able to really focus in on the smaller things that are easy to do and make a big impact. As an article from Investopedia says:

“You won’t have time for any major renovations, so focus on quick repairs to address things that could deter potential buyers.”

Here are some specific examples from that article:

 a graph of a number of homes for sale

Just remember, even if you’re not ready to list within the next couple of weeks, that’s okay. The window of opportunity doesn’t close when this week ends. Spring is the peak homebuying season and it’s still a seller’s market, so you’ll be in the driver’s seat all season long. 

Bottom Line

Ready to get the ball rolling? Connect with a real estate agent to schedule a time to go over your next steps.


4 Tips To Make Your Strongest Offer on a Home

(Published on - 3/25/2024 6:26:33 PM)

Are you thinking about buying a home soon? If so, you should know today’s market is competitive in many areas because the number of homes for sale is still low – and that’s leading to multiple-offer scenarios. And moving into the peak homebuying season this spring, this is only expected to ramp up more.

Remember these four tips to make your best offer.

1. Partner with a Real Estate Agent

Rely on a real estate agent who can support your goals. As PODS notes:

“Making an offer on a home without an agent is certainly possible, but having a pro by your side gives you a massive advantage in figuring out what to offer on a house.”

Agents are local market experts. They know what’s worked for other buyers in your area and what sellers may be looking for. That advice can be game changing when you’re deciding what offer to bring to the table.

2. Understand Your Budget

Knowing your numbers is even more important right now. The best way to understand your budget is to work with a lender so you can get pre-approved for a home loan. Doing so helps you be more financially confident and shows sellers you’re serious. That gives you a competitive edge. As Investopedia says:

“. . . sellers have an advantage because of intense buyer demand and a limited number of homes for sale; they may be less likely to consider offers without pre-approval letters.”

3. Make a Strong, but Fair Offer

It’s only natural to want the best deal you can get on a home, especially when affordability is tight. However, submitting an offer that’s too low does have some risks. You don’t want to make an offer that’ll be tossed out as soon as it’s received just to see if it sticks. As explains:

“. . . an offer price that’s significantly lower than the listing price, is often rejected by sellers who feel insulted . . . Most listing agents try to get their sellers to at least enter negotiations with buyers, to counteroffer with a number a little closer to the list price. However, if a seller is offended by a buyer or isn’t taking the buyer seriously, there’s not much you, or the real estate agent, can do.”

The expertise your agent brings to this part of the process will help you stay competitive and find a price that’s fair to you and the seller.

4. Trust Your Agent During Negotiations

After you submit your offer, the seller may decide to counter it. When negotiating, it’s smart to understand what matters to the seller. Once you do, being as flexible as you can on things like moving dates or the condition of the house can make your offer more attractive.

Your real estate agent is your partner in navigating these details. Trust them to lead you through negotiations and help you figure out the best plan. As an article from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) explains:

“There are many factors up for discussion in any real estate transaction—from price to repairs to possession date. A real estate professional who’s representing you will look at the transaction from your perspective, helping you negotiate a purchase agreement that meets your needs . . .” 

Bottom Line

In today's competitive market, be sure to work with a local real estate agent to find you a home you love and craft a strong offer that stands out.


Spring Cleaning Tips & Tricks

(Published on - 3/16/2024 7:01:16 PM)

As the winter season comes to an end, many of us look forward to the fresh start that spring brings. It is the perfect time to declutter, organize, and deep clean our homes. Spring cleaning allows us to create a clean and refreshing environment, promoting a sense of well-being and productivity. In this article, we will look at some practical tips and tricks to organize your spring cleaning in a tidy and productive manner.

Create a Cleaning Checklist

Before embarking on your spring cleaning, creating a checklist of to-do activities is important. This helps you stay organized and ensure you do not miss any areas needing attention. Start by going through each room in your home and note what needs to be cleaned, decluttered, or organized. Split your checklist into manageable sections, such as cleaning the kitchen, decluttering the bedroom, and organizing the garage. Having a clear plan will make your spring cleaning process much smoother.

Declutter First

One of the most important steps in spring cleaning is decluttering. Take the time to go through your belongings and decide what you want to keep, donate, or discard. Start with one area at a time, such as a closet or a drawer, and sort through each item. Ask yourself if you have used or worn the item in the past year. If not, it may be time to let it go. Decluttering creates more space in your home, helps create a sense of calm, and reduces visual clutter.

Clean from Top to Bottom

When cleaning each room, starting from the top and working your way down is best. Kick-start by dusting shelves, light fittings, and ceiling fans. Then, move on to cleaning windows, blinds, and curtains. Next, focus on wiping down surfaces such as countertops, tables, and cabinets. Finally, vacuum or mop the floors. When you clean from top to bottom, you ensure that any dust or dirt that drops while cleaning is captured and removed.

Do Not Forget Neglected Areas

During your spring cleaning, do not forget to pay attention to the often-neglected areas of your home. These include baseboards, vents, and light switches. Use a mild cleaning solution or damp cloth to wipe down these areas and remove accumulated dust or grime. Also, remember to clean behind large appliances, such as the refrigerator and stove, to ensure that no dirt or debris lurks in these hidden spaces.

Deep Clean Carpets and Upholstery

Spring is the perfect time to give your carpets and upholstery a deep clean. Thoroughly vacuum your carpets to get rid of any dust or debris. Consider hiring a professional cleaning service or renting a carpet cleaner for stains or high-traffic areas. Similarly, clean your upholstery using appropriate cleaning products or consider cleaning it professionally. You can revive their appearance and prolong their lifespan by giving your carpets and upholstery some extra attention.

Refresh Your Bedding and Linens

Refreshing your linens and bedding is a great idea when doing spring cleaning. Wash your sheets, pillowcases, and duvet covers in hot water to remove any allergens or dust mites that may have accumulated over time. To keep your mattress clean and prolong its life, consider rotating it and using a mattress protector. Do not forget to wash or dry clean your curtains and give your pillows a good fluff in the dryer to restore their shape.

Organize and Declutter Storage Spaces

Take the time to organize and declutter your storage spaces, such as closets, cabinets, and drawers. Remove everything from the area and sort through each item. Donate or discard items that you no longer use or need. Invest in storage solutions such as drawer organizers, boxes, or baskets to keep things accessible and tidy. To make locating stuff in the future simpler, label the storage containers you use. Over time, having a well-organized storage system will save you time and lessen your stress.

Clean and Maintain Outdoor Spaces

Spring cleaning is not just about the interior of your home; it is also a great time to clean and maintain your outdoor spaces. Sweep away any debris from your patio or deck, and wash the surfaces using a pressure washer if necessary. Clean your outdoor furniture and cushions, and check for any repairs or replacements that may be needed. Also, take the time to inspect and clean your gutters and downspouts to ensure proper drainage. When you pay attention to your outdoor spaces, you create a welcoming environment for outdoor activities during the spring and summer months.

Spring cleaning is a great time to give your house a makeover and make it a tidy, orderly place to live. These tips and tricks can make your spring cleaning process efficient and effective. Remember to create a checklist, declutter first, clean from top to bottom, and pay attention to neglected areas. Keep in mind to deep clean carpets and upholstery, refresh your bedding and linens, and organize storage spaces. Last, take the time to clean and maintain outdoor spaces for a complete spring cleaning experience. With these strategies, you can enjoy a fresh and revitalized home as you embrace the new season. Happy spring cleaning!



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