Yes, You can own a home in 2017. Owning a home is one of the largest purchases you’ll ever make. Although it might feel overwhelming it doesn’t have to be. Watch this short video on the home buying process.
The steps to owning a home include:
1. Getting approved for a loan
2. Working with a licensed professional that can explain the process and help with the hard decisions.
3. Select the area you want to live in. Before choosing the city drive around and check out the community, call the school district and get the school score breakdowns, call the city to find out what’s offered. Is a community swimming pool important to you? Do you want public transportation, shopping, a prairie path? Think about what you really want near your new home.
4. Begin your home search. Download my free home search app that gives access to active listings in the entire United States – Click here.
5. Once you find a home we will write an offer based on current market data. A home is only worth what someone is willing to pay. We will use current sold properties to determine a good asking price.
6. Once the offer is accepted you’ll hire a licensed home inspector. This takes about 3 hours. It might seem long but it’s the best way to understand what you are purchasing. A resale home isn’t perfect.
7. After the inspection issues are resolved you’ll make sure all necessary paperwork is turned into your mortgage company. Your loan officer might ask for the same document more than once. Please just resend it and also stay away from big purchases. That could harm your purchase power and result in a loan denial.
8. The mortgage company will order your appraisal. Once the appraisal is completed and the underwriter has all paperwork we wait for a clear to close and your confirmed closing date and time.
9. One or two days before closing we have a final walk-thru of the home.
10. Finally, we meet a the title company to close your home purchase. This is different in other states. In Illinois we close at the title company location.
Ask me how I can negotiate your down payment today. Contact me now
Start your lawn care by following our season-by-season lawn maintenance calendar. Get a barefoot-worthy lawn and ensure your home has curb appeal.
Like so many maintenance jobs, everything goes smoother — and you’ll get better results — with proper preparation. Early spring is the time to get ready for lawn-growing and mowing season.
Related: How to Bring Back Your Lawn After Winter Damage
Sharpen mower blades to ensure clean cuts. A dull blade tears the grass, leaving jagged edges that discolor the lawn and invite pathogens.
Sharpen mower blades once each month during grass-cutting season. Have a backup blade (about $20) so that a sharp one is always on hand.
Tune up your mower with a new sparkplug ($3 to $5) and air filter ($5 to $10). Your mower might not need a new sparkplug every season, but changing it is a simple job, and doing it every year ensures you won’t forget the last time you replaced your sparkplug.
Buy fresh gas. Gas that’s been left to sit over the winter can accumulate moisture that harms small engines. This is especially true for fuel containing ethanol, so use regular grades of gasoline.
If you need to dump old gasoline, ask your city or county for local disposal sites that take old fuel.
Clean up your lawn. Time to get out the leaf rakes and remove any twigs and leaves that have accumulated over the winter. A thick layer of wet leaves can smother a lawn if not immediately removed in early spring. Cleaning up old debris clears the way for applying fertilizer and herbicides.
Depending on your weather, your grass will now start growing in earnest, so be ready for the first cutting. Don’t mow when the grass is wet — you could spread diseases, and wet clippings clog up lawn mowers.
Fertilizing: Both spring and fall are good times to fertilize your lawn. In the northern third of the country, where winters are cold, fertilize in fall — cool weather grasses go dormant over winter and store energy in their roots for use in the spring.
For the rest of the country, apply fertilizer just as your grass begins its most active growth. For best results, closely follow the application directions on the product. You’ll spend about $50 to $75 per application for an average 1/4-acre lot.
Aeration: Aerating punches small holes in your lawn so water, fertilizers, and oxygen reach grass roots. Pick a day when the soil is damp but not soaked so the aeration machine can work efficiently.
Related: More about lawn aeration
Pre-emergent herbicides: Now is the time to apply a pre-emergent herbicide to prevent crabgrass and other weeds from taking root in your lawn. A soil thermometer is a handy helper; you can pick one up for $10 to $20. When you soil temperature reaches 58 degrees — the temperature at which crabgrass begins to germinate — it’s time to apply the herbicide.
Watch out for grubs: Warm weather means that grub worms, the larvae stage of June, Japanese, and other beetles, start feeding on the tender root systems of lawns. Affected lawns show browning and wilting patches.
To be certain that the culprits are grubs, pull back the sod and look for white, C-shaped grubs. If you see more than 10 per square foot, your lawn should be treated with a chemical pesticide.
Milky spore is an environmentally friendly way to control some species of grubs. When using insecticides, read and follow all label directions, and water the product into the soil immediately. Cost is around $50 to $75 per application.
Grass-cutting tip: Your grass is starting to grow fast, and you might even be cutting more than once a week to keep up. To keep grass healthy, mow often enough so you’re removing no more than 1/3 of the grass blade.
Pesky weeds: Weeds that have escaped an herbicide application should be removed with a garden fork. Use a post-emergent herbicide only if you think the situation is getting out of hand.
Check out our guide to some common types of weeds and tips on how to get rid of them.
Here’s a good mantra to guide you through the heart of grass-mowing season: The taller the grass, the deeper the roots, the fewer the weeds, and the more moisture the soil holds between watering.
With that in mind, here’s how to ensure a healthy, green lawn:
- Set your mower blade height to 3 inches.
- Deep and infrequent watering is better for lawns than frequent sprinkles, which promote shallow root growth. In general, lawns need about 1 inch of water per week to maintain green color and active growth.
Lawns that receive less than that will likely go dormant. That’s okay, the grass is still alive, but dormant lawns should still receive at least 1 inch of water per month. Your grass will green up again when the weather brings regular rains.
- To check the output of a sprinkler, scatter some pie tins around the yard to see how much water collects in a specific length of time. Having a rain gauge ($5 to $20) will help you keep track of how much water the lawn receives naturally.
- At least once each month, clean underneath your mower to prevent spreading lawn diseases.
- Although it’s OK to leave grass clippings on the lawn where they can decompose and nourish the soil, large clumps of clippings should be removed. Regularly rake up any leaves, twigs, and debris.
If your grass seems to be stressed out, check out our advice on what to do if your lawn is turning brown.
The best time to patch bare or thin spots is when the hot, dry days of summer have given way to cooler temps. Follow these simple steps:
1. Remove any dead grass.
2. Break up the soil with a garden trowel.
3. Add an inch of compost and work it into the soil.
4. Add grass seed that’s designed for shade or full sun, depending on the area you’re working on. Spread the seed evenly across the bare patch.
5. Use a hard-tooth rake to work the seed into the soil to a depth of about half an inch.
6. Sprinkle grass clippings over the patch to help prevent the soil from drying out.
7. Water the area; you’ll want to keep the patch moist, so lightly water once a day until the seed germinates and the new grass gets about one inch tall.
Your main job in fall is to keep your lawn free of leaves and other debris. You can use a mulching mower to break up leaves and add the organic matter to your soil, but be sure to clean up any clumps so they don’t kill the grass.
In the northern one-third of the country, now is the time to fertilize your lawn. Your grass will store the nutrients in its roots as it goes dormant over the winter, and your lawn will be ready for a jump start when spring warms the ground.
This is also the time to clean up your garden.
Are you a buyer? Are you seeking to move or upgrade? Check out this article from REALTOR Magazine. This is a great way to get started in your new home purchase.
The KCM Crew 10-22-2013 www.kcmblog.com
DuPage County homes for sale are down. Inventory is extremely low. Single family homes for sale are down 24.2% from the previous and attached homes for sale are down 31.5%. Now may be a great time to sell. We are definitely in a sellers market.
Click to view! Homes for Sale for Du Page.
Cook County homes for sale are down. Inventory is extremely low. Single family homes for sale are down 20% from the previous and attached homes for sale are down 35.4%. Now may be a great time to sell. We are definitely in a sellers market.
Click to view the chart. Homes for Sale for Cook.
Northern Illinois still has considerably cold weather compared to last year when we were in the 80’s on some days. Although the weather isn’t where we would like it buyers are still buying homes. However, these buyers are finding less to choose from. In February of 2012 there were 4,016 single family homes for sale in DuPage County and 2,728 attached homes for sale. Last month, February 2013, there were only 2,822 single family homes for sale and only 1,607 attached homes for sale. A decrease of 29.7% for single family and 41.1% for attached single family.
What does this mean for our market? Yes, we are in a sellers market. Depending on how accurately an agent listed a home the property could sell relatively quickly. The property may also end up in a multiple offer situation. For every home I’ve listed in the past 6 months the home had multiple showings and went under contract almost immediately.
Home values may not be where we want them but we’ve definitely started the up turn for the DuPage County market. For statistics on your specific city contact me today. Email, facebook, LinkedIn or twitter. . [email protected]
Click to see the Median Sales Price for Du Page. February 2013
The Median Sales Prices are in for DuPage County. October 2012 Single Family homes Median Sales Prices are $255,000. Attached Single Family home Median Sales Prices for October 2012 are $120,000.
Single Family homes show a 6.8% gain from October 2011 to October 2012. Attached Single Family show a 3.2% gain from October 2011 to October 2012. Nice to hear that we are on an upward trend. We aren’t moving up in pricing like homeowners would like. However, an upward trend is definitely better than a downward trend.
Click for the chart. Median Sales Price for Du Page.
Carrie Little-Bey has been real estate broker for over 11 years, helping potential residents find the home of their dreams and ensuring sellers get the price they want. Her property marketing skills and dedication to fulfilling her clients’ needs have earned her an esteemed reputation in the local real estate community.
In her current position as a broker associate at Baird & Warner, Carrie helps clients buy and sell single family homes and condominiums. As a lifelong Illinois resident, she has a wealth of knowledge about the Northern Illinois real estate market. She has a keen ability to put the best buyers and sellers together to form the most ideal transactions.
Before joining Baird & Warner, Carrie worked in the technology, non-profit and retail industries. Carrie has a background in Real estate as a former employee of a residential builder and employee of McDonald’s Corporation in the East Coast Real Estate Legal Department.
Carrie began her real estate career in 2001 where she quickly learned the residential business and systems that help with her successes.
Carrie has been a resident of DuPage County since 1996 and actively involved in volunteering for missions trips to Mexico, fundraising events and the Mother’s and More DuPage County chapter. She prides herself as someone that enjoys helping young people understand the importance of completing college. As a mother of three, Carrie can often be found with her family at the local pool, walking their dog, reading a motivational book or exercising with friends.