Keeping up with Chicago's North Shore Real Estate Market!

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Friday, September 28, 2012

Fewer contracts to buy homes signed

Fewer contracts to buy homes signed
Lack of inventory, coupled with general economic woes, ended the streak of ever-better statistics. However, the number was 10.7% above last August.


Thursday, September 27, 2012

How's housing?

"If you want to look at telltale indicators that reveal whether a specific local real estate market is outperforming – or underperforming – during the national rebound underway, check out these two: The median number of days from listing of a house to sale, and whether the local drop in available homes for sale has been above or below the national norm."
Two Key Real Estate Indicators Demonstrate Housing Performance

When is it the right time to sell?

"Spring fever, summer doldrums, holiday interruptions, winter icicles, there is always something going on when you are thinking about selling your house. Which leads to the question: When is the best time of year to list/sell my house?

The simple and uncomplicated answer is any time you’re ready!

...Seasonally more homes sell in spring and early summer than fall and winter. Roughly 21 percent of sales occur from January thru March (the lowest quarter) and 35 percent between May and July (the busiest three months).  However, don’t let the numbers lead you to believe spring/summer is the best time to sell.  It’s just the time more people do.  There is actually no bad time to sell.  Home sales take place every day, 12 months of the year..."

The Washington Post
When is the best time of year to sell your home?

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Chemical Waste Drop off -- September 29 
8:00 - 2:30
Lake Forest Municipal Services Building

Rising Home Prices

"They’re back! Home prices, that is.

Two reports out Tuesday confirm an uptrend in home prices. The S&P/Case-Shiller home price index of 20 major cities increased 1.2% in the 12 months ended in July, beating expectations. Later in the day, the Federal Housing Finance Agency reported its measure of U.S. home prices increased 0.2% in July over June. That rise capped off seventh consecutive monthly gains.
To be sure, real estate values aren’t soaring as they did during the housing boom, and the level of prices remains about 30% below their 2006 highs, according to S&P data. But you have to crawl before you can walk."

Rising Home Prices Brighten Economic Outlook
Wall Street Journal

Why Home Prices Are Rising

"Home prices through July posted their largest year-to-date rise since 2005, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller index covering 20 major metropolitan areas."

Wall Street Journal
Five Questions: Why Home Prices Are Rising

Oktoberfest in Lake Forest

Plan to attend the 2012 Oktoberfest benefit to support the Lake Forest Gorton Children’s Drop-In Center! The party will be held from 7:00-11:00p.m. on Friday, September 28th at the Lake Forest Club (554 North Westmoreland Road, Lake Forest). Funds raised from Oktoberfest will benefit the Gorton Children’s Drop-In Center and operations of the Gorton Community Center.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

It's BUY in Chicago

Buy or rent: 10 Biggest CitiesCNN Money

Return of a seller's market?

"...To their surprise, buyers in some housing markets are finding that they're no longer in the power position. The reason is simple: too many bidders and not enough homes...."

Winning in a seller's housing market

Thursday, September 13, 2012

The trouble with bad appraisals....

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Illinois foreclosure activity rate leads nation in August

Historic Tour in Wilmette

One-hour tours of historic St. Joseph cemetery will be offered Saturday, September 15th at 10:00 or 11:00 a.m. Guests must sign up the day of the event for either tour time at the Historical Museum table at St. Joseph's Oktoberfest, located on the corner of Lake Avenue and Ridge Road.  Learn about the German farmers and shopkeepers who founded the Village of Gross Point, the cemetery itself, and the colorful stories behind the stones.

Buying beats renting in all 100 largest U.S. metros | Inman News

Buying beats renting in all 100 largest U.S. metros | Inman News

Rent or Buy?

"In three-quarters of American towns and cities, it takes 3 years or less for a homebuyer to begin seeing savings over the cost of renting..."

The Daily Stat
Harvard Business Review

Music Festival in Lake Bluff

The Lake Bluff Brewing Company is presenting its first annual Lake Bluff Music Festival, featuring three bands, locally-sourced food, beer and wine, soft drinks, merchandise and more on September 15 from 3pm to 7pm on the Village Green gazebo in Lake Bluff.

Check out the details

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Refi underwater homes

"If the value of your home is less than you owe on your mortgage, refinancing to take advantage of today’s low interest rates - recently 3.7% on a 30-year fixed-rate loan - may seem out of reach. But if you’re up-to-date on your mortgage payments, you may be able to refinance through one of two programs...."

Monday, September 10, 2012

Annual Book Sale in Lake Forest

Friends of Lake Forest Library 37th Annual Book Sale 
Lake Forest Recreation Center Gymnasium 
Thursday, September 13- 9am-6pm Pre-Sale: Volunteers and Members Only
(FOLFL Memberships available at the door) 
Friday, September 14 9am-8pm
Saturday, September 15 9am-5pm
Sunday, September 16 9am-5pm (all books half priced)

Read about the sale:  Lake Forest Library!

Friday, September 7, 2012

10 tax tips for home sellers | Inman News

10 tax tips for home sellers | Inman News

Treasures in the Field

The Lake Forest Chapter of Infant Welfare Society of Chicago will sponsor the 45th Annual Antiques & Treasures in the Field on Sunday, September 9th from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm at the Deerpath Middle School, located on Deer Path Road, one mile east of Highway 41 in Lake Forest.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Linden Square

The Wilmette Historical Museum is offering a stroller tour this fall, giving families with younger children the opportunity to learn about Wilmette's historic Linden Square, the commercial district around Linden Avenue and 4th Street. Goodie bags with crayons and a coloring book of Wilmette landmarks will be provided for young children. Although the tour is designed for parents with children in strollers, everyone is welcome.

"A Stroll Through Time" will be held on Sunday, September 9 from 3:00 - 4:30 p.m. The tour is free but reservations are required by phoning the Wilmette Historical Museum at (847) 853-7666. 

Leave or Stay?

"Historically, almost two-thirds of households in America live in a place they own. Homeownership is a key prong of the American dream, and according to a American Housing Survey by the U.S. Census Bureau, some 9 out of 10 Americans achieve it during their lifetime.
Also key to American homeownership is the notion of moving up – i.e., buying a home, living in it for a few years, then selling to reap the profit in order to purchase another property, either a higher-value place or one that better suits the owners’ current living situation. This was particularly popular in high-growth areas like California and Las Vegas. But that was before the recent economic downturn and a massive slump in housing prices. Now, the decision to sell your house and trade up is not as clear-cut as once thought, and owners are left wondering, Should we stay, or should we go?"

Relocating vs. Remodeling – Deciding Whether to Stay or Move
Money Crashers

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Less Stress?

"Improvement in the nation’s housing markets has helped ease consumer financial woes, according to a quarterly report from a large credit counseling agency.

For the first time in nearly four years, the Consumer Distress Index, published by the nonprofit agency CredAbility, showed that consumers nationally were inching their way out of financial distress."

New York Times

Picture perfect

"Today more than ever, it's the photos that sell a home, as buyers spend evenings and weekends on their couches poring over slide shows on iPads or laptops." 

Does the picture tell the whole story?
MSN Real Estate

Monday, September 3, 2012


"The country’s underwater homes are slowly resurfacing as the housing market improves. But younger borrowers are still more likely to be submerged, a new report from real estate site finds."

Half of Homeowners Under 40 Are Still Underwater
New York Times

Price matters

...three keys that will help increase the chances of selling your home.

Pricing your home to sell
The Washington Post

Tips from a real estate investor

"Most people only buy a couple homes in their lifetime. This lack of experience leads many home buyers to feel woefully unprepared — increasing their stress level which affects their decision-making at the worst possible time.  The process doesn’t have to be so complicated if you keep things in perspective. 

 Keep in mind that you’re not getting married.  You don’t have to make a lifelong commitment to a home. So relax, a little, you only need commit to a home for a few years. You can always move later if you fall out of love with your home, as long as you buy right."

A real estate investor’s guide to buying a home
The Washington Post

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Starting today....

Lake Forest:
Hands-free Cell Phone Ordinance Effective September 1

Moving home

....A Pew Research Center study, “The Return of the Multi-Generational Family Household,” published long before the most recent, even higher census figures, revealed that in 2008 a record 49 million Americans, or 16.1 percent of the country’s population, lived in a family household that contained at least two adult generations or a grandparent and at least one other generation.

Those figures, according to that Pew report, represented a significant trend reversal that started right after World War II. In 1940, about a quarter of the population lived in a multigenerational home (my mother-in-law, in fact, grew up sharing a house with her aunt, uncle and cousins), while in 1980, only 12 percent did....

The Waltons Meets Modern Family
The New York Times