5 Essential Tips for Busy Chicago Home Buyers
Buying a home in Chicago can be a time consuming process. For prospective Chicago home buyers on a tight schedule, finding the time to search for a home can be difficult, if not downright prohibitive. Don’t despair though as there are some tips that can help Chicago home buyers find the perfect home with a minimum of stress.
1. Narrow down your “must-have” list. When it comes to buying a home in Chicago, it is easy to get carried away with your “must-have” list given the variety of housing options the city offers. While it is fine to have an extensive “wish” list, narrowing down your “must-haves” will help move the process along faster. For example, you may absolutely need three bedrooms given the size of your family, but do you really need a pool?
2. Be flexible. This goes along with narrowing down your “must-have” list. Can you expand your target area, for example? Although you may really want to live in a specific area, are you open to looking at a home just a few blocks from that area? The more flexible you can be, the more likely your real estate agent is to find you a selection of homes from which to choose.
3. Make technology your friend. In the 21st century, most Chicago home buyers take a hands-on approach when looking for a home. While your real estate agent can do a lot of the work for you, most buyers enjoy looking themselves. Along with a virtually endless number of listings that can be found on our website, which is designed to help buyers search for properties for sale, home buyers can also download a ZipRealty mobile app to get immediate access to listings even on-the-go. Home buyers should also take advantage of online services like free e-mail updates that help you keep track of upcoming open houses in your target neighborhood.
4. Be prepared to make an offer. People often mistake pre-qualified with pre-approval. Pre-qualified means that a lender thinks you will be approved based on information you provided while pre-approval means the lender has actually run a credit check and verified your information and has given you a loan amount for which you are conditionally approved. By getting pre-approved, you already know what you can afford and should have everything in order to make an offer the minute you find your dream home.
5. Work with a professional. There simply is no substitute for working with an experienced real estate agent when it comes to buying a home in Chicago. Given the size of the market and the constantly changing market conditions, a busy homebuyer needs someone to help relieve the stress involved in searching for a home. A professional real estate agent will save you both time and money in most cases.
By incorporating each of these five tips into your search process, buying a home in Chicago should be an enjoyable time instead of a stressful one.