October 2014

There are 19 blog entries for October 2014.

Home Buying Secrets

If you've ever been in the market for a used car, some of the first things that usually come to mind during a search are what kind of condition a car may be in, how well it runs, and what kind of potential problems could arise should you decide to make the purchase. In some cases, you might even look under the hood to do a quick once-over, or take it to a mechanic to do a full-blown inspection.  

Well, given most homes are a much larger financial commitment than any car or truck you'll buy, it's always a good idea to do the same kind of thorough inspection prior to making an offer, even if it's an out-of-pocket cost to you—the buyer.  

Of course during any home buying process, there's always an inspection period that acts as a systematic evaluation

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Home Buying Secrets

It goes without saying that the primary objective when buying a home or condo is to find something you like, in addition to finding something that fits all your needs and wants. Location, exterior features, interior finishes, and lifestyle amenities will undoubtedly all play a role in what might put a home over the edge or what might take a home out of contention, but during any home search, it's always important for a buyer to take as much emotion out of the final decision as possible.  

Making a savvy home purchase is all about finding that perfect balance between choosing a home you love and choosing a home that’s also a good short- or long-term investment. Even the homes that seemingly check off all the boxes on your wish list can have hidden red

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Home Buying Secrets

Of course buying a home is one of the biggest financial commitments you'll ever have to make, and deciding which home or condo in downtown Chicago is right for you is no small decision. As seasoned home buyers already know, there's much more to home ownership than just the mortgage payment, so paying close attention to additional expenses, often called "sleeper costs," is a vital detail in what's sometimes a very complex home buying process, especially if you're a first time home buyer.

Over the past 12-18 months, downtown Chicago's rental market has been red hot, but if you're considering trading in that chic downtown apartment for a brand new home or condo of your very own, it's important to prepare yourself now for those pesky little expenditures

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Two months after ground first broke for the 24-story, 35-unit glass tower at 4 E. Elm, more development looks to be on the way in Chicago's Gold Coast neighborhood. As first reported in Crain's Chicago Business yesterday, billionaire investor Col. Jennifer Pritzker is planning an 8 row-home development on a vacant lot at Clark and Chestnut—a project that will be inspired by some of the most historic 19th century houses just down the street at 116-120 W. Chestnut.  

“Not everybody wants a doorman, believe it or not,” said Gold Coast Realty Chicago owner Leo Clark. “A lot of these people are moving from the suburbs to the city and space is hard to come by down here.”

The new Gold Coast project will be the first new construction downtown

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Tippling Hall Now Open In River North  

It's been a long road for Mercadito Hospitality Group's Tippling Hall, but after two years and a whole lot of anticipation, River North's hottest new restaurant-bar combo is finally open. Located in the former Hop Haus space at 646 N. Franklin, those behind the concept wanted to throw a little bit of everything into the restaurant, combining great food and drinks with a comfortable yet edgy feel. Along with that, Tippling Hall is open for late-lunch all the way through late-night service - catering to just about anyone and everyone who lives, works, or breathes in downtown Chicago's River North neighborhood.  

As far as the menu goes, both the drinks and the food at Tippling Hall are globally-inspired. The cocktails all have unique and fun names,

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When browsing the downtown Chicago real estate market, it's only natural to be drawn to some of the biggest, baddest, and most expensive condos you can find, regardless of your budget. Condos for sale in buildings like Trump Tower, the Ritz Carlton Residences, and Waldorf Astoria offer incredible views, impeccable finishes, and some of the finest amenities in town—so who wouldn't want to see what's offered in these and other luxury condo buildings across the city?  

But even if your budget does exceed that multi million dollar threshold, it's still important to acknowledge that bigger isn't always better when searching for a new place to call home. In fact, savvy luxury home buyers will always take market conditions and general market

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Home Buying Secrets | Gold Coast Realty

 At some point during your home search, you might have heard the falsehood that spring and fall are the best times to buy. And while it may be true that the Chicago real estate market is traditionally more active during certain times of the year, one of the biggest mistakes a home buyer can make is to make an attempt at strategically timing the market when purchasing a new home or condo here in the Windy City.  

The fact of the matter is that anticipating housing market conditions is impossible, not to mention certain cycles can take weeks, months, or even years before a dramatic shift occurs. It goes without saying that most home buyers always put together a pretty extensive wish list prior to even beginning any sort of home search, so when a

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Home Buying Secrets - Chicago Real Estate

It's easy to get "pre-qualified" and "pre-approved" mixed up during the home buying process, and if you're someone interested in perhaps purchasing a new home or condo in downtown Chicago, it's important to recognize the difference. Getting pre-qualified is only the first step in the complex mortgage approval process, and generally, it's a rather simple procedure.   

In most pre-qualification cases, potential home buyers will provide their most basic financial information to a lender or mortgage company, which includes your debt, your income, and your assets, and a quick evaluation is done to give buyers an idea of whether or not they qualify for a home loan. Pre-qualification can be done over the phone or on the internet, and can take as little as a…
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Home Buying Secrets

Just a couple weeks ago, we detailed some of the most common home buying myths associated with today's marketplace, and after such a positive reception, we thought we'd offer our readers a new mini series that clues home buyers in on some of the best kept secrets you should follow during the home buying process.  

It goes without saying that purchasing a new home is a pretty major investment, and if you're like the majority of home buyers who need to finance a new home or condo in Chicago, its vital your credit score is as high as possible. After the housing and financial crash of 2008, lenders need to see that you're a reliable borrower, and being able to provide a detailed paper trail that proves you're worth the risk is perhaps the most

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Streetcars to Museum Campus in Chicago

If you've ever been to the Shedd Aquarium, the Field Museum, or even Chicago's famed Solider Field, chances are you found it somewhat difficult to even make it over to Museum Campus, let alone find parking, avoid congestion, and eventually find an easy way out.  

Earlier this week, Curbed Chicago reiterated Mayor Rahm Emanuel's desire to make it easier for tourists and locals alike to visit one downtown Chicago's top attractions, highlighting a unique and interesting proposal from a group called the Chicago Streetcar Renaissance.  

The idea, of course, revolves around brining back one of the primary forms of public transportation in major cities all over the world back in the 20th century—the Streetcar. Although the idea may sound a bit

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