Planning to Purchase a New Home? Watch Out for These Common Mistakes

buying, Wheaton Real Estate LawyersThere are so many things to consider when you are thinking about a new home purchase. What neighborhood should you move to? What types of amenities are most important to you? Are there certain features in a home that you cannot live without? What size home should you buy? Fantasizing about the perfect new house, apartment, or condominium can be one of the most enjoyable parts about the home-buying process. However, those looking to buy a home should also be aware of the many pitfalls that can spell disaster. The home-buying process can involve complicated financial challenges and legalese-filled documents that are impossible to understand. This is one reason it is so important to work with an experienced real estate attorney when buying a new home.

Buying a Home that Exceeds Your Budget

Making a realistic budget can be extremely difficult. The majority of people grossly underestimate their actual expenses and forget about the small expenses that add up every month. If you overestimate the amount of money you can reasonably contribute to your mortgage every month, you may find yourself unable to make these payments on time. You could even end up at risk of foreclosure. When determining how much you can spend on a new home, make sure to consider the added costs which you do not necessarily experience as a renter. You will need to account for property taxes, utility bills, and the costs of maintaining your home.

Sticking to your budget can take a great deal of self-control. Many people struggle with this part of the home-buying process. Make sure you work with your real estate agent and lawyer to find a budget that will not leave you with more house than you can afford. Seeking pre-approval for your mortgage loan is one way to help ensure that you do not miscalculate your budget and overcommit.

Moving Before You Are Ready

Moving to a new home can be thrilling, however, home buyers should be wary of moving before they are truly ready. Most mortgage lenders calculate your average income using your income from the past two years. If you have not had your job long enough, you may want to wait a year or two before buying a new home. The same is true if you have not established a good credit score or saved enough for a decent down payment. Ultimately, it is better to know for sure that you are ready to buy a home than to find out you were not ready after it is too late.

Contact a DuPage Real Estate Lawyer

Buying a home is potentially the largest purchase you will ever make. To get the legal guidance you need when purchasing a new home, contact Stock, Carlson & Duff LLC. Call us today at 630-665-2500 for a personal consultation with an experienced Wheaton real estate attorney.

 

Sources:

https://www.lendingtree.com/home/mortgage/home-buying-mistakes/

https://www.forbes.com/sites/trulia/2016/08/31/7-warning-signs-youre-not-ready-to-buy-a-home/

What You Should Know About Selling Your Home This Winter

winter, Wheaton real estate attorneysMost real estate agents and attorneys will tell you that that the spring and summer are the most popular seasons for buying a new home. As a result, they are also the seasons during which many people will sell their home, since, without a home that is for sale, the buyer cannot buy, obviously.

While it is true that spring and summer are traditionally the prime home-buying seasons, if you are ready to move now, there is no reason to wait until winter is over. With the right guidance, selling your home during the colder months could help you realize an excellent return on your investment.

A Smaller, More Competitive Market

Since springtime is allegedly the “best” time to sell a home, many owners throughout the region are likely to wait until the weather breaks before they list their homes. This means that if you decide to wait as well, your home will be on the market with dozens, if not hundreds, of homes, many of which will probably be in and around your neighborhood.

If you list your home now, there will be fewer homes available compared to a few months from now. As a result, your home will be able to stand out from the crowd. With fewer available options, potential buyers are more likely to end up looking in your direction.

Fewer Browsers and More Buyers

The “slower” home sales season also means that fewer buyers will be out and about looking for new homes. Those who are looking, however, are likely to be much more serious than those you might encounter during the warmer months. When the weather is nice, engaged couples and families often start browsing the real estate listings and attending open houses without any real intention to make an offer. During the colder months, you will have to spend less time and energy on “lookers” or “browsers,” allowing you to focus on well-intentioned buyers.

Highlighting the Features of Your Home

Meticulous landscaping and lush, green grass can certainly give your home curb appeal in the spring and summer, but the winter provides an opportunity to show would-be buyers that your home is equipped to handle the elements. If you have recently installed new windows or a high-efficiency furnace, for example, it is easier to show the benefits of such features during a cold-weather showing. Amenities such as hot tubs or fireplaces could also offer substantial appeal during the winter months.

Finally, nearly every home looks its best after it has been decorated for the winter holidays. Shimmering lights and colorful decorations create a welcoming atmosphere. When would-be buyers or open house guests feel at home, they are often more inclined to make a serious offer.

Call a Wheaton Real Estate Lawyer

While selling your home is possible during the winter, you will still have many legal issues to address before the new owner can move in. Contact a skilled and experienced DuPage County real estate attorney to get the help you need. Call Stock, Carlson & Duff LLC at 630-665-2500 for a personal consultation today.

 

Sources:

https://www.zillow.com/sellers-guide/selling-house-during-winter-holidays/

https://www.fortunebuilders.com/winter-home-selling/

What Is a Judicial Foreclosure?

foreclosure, Wheaton real estate lawyersIf own your home, you probably are familiar with the concept of foreclosure. You more than likely know that if you fall seriously behind on your monthly mortgage payments, your lender has the legal right to initiate proceedings through which the lender can seize your home. What you may not realize, however, is that foreclosure is a rather complicated series of steps and that Illinois law mandates that the court system must handle the foreclosure process. This means that every foreclosure in the state is known as a judicial foreclosure.

How Other States Handle Foreclosure

There are 16 states, including Illinois, which require the courts to oversee foreclosures. Five other states use judicial foreclosures almost exclusively—but as a customary practice rather than a legal requirement. Non-judicial proceedings are used in the 29 remaining states, either as just an option or because the law prohibits judicial foreclosures.

In situations where there is no requirement for judicial foreclosure, the mortgage contract will often include a provision that grants the “power of sale” to the lender. This provision effectively allows the lender to foreclose and seize the property without going through the court system. If the homeowner does not make the payments required by the mortgage agreement, power of sale gives the lender the authority to take the home and sell it in an effort to recover the remainder of the loan balance. In Illinois, a power of sale provision is not enforceable.

State or Federal Court

In most cases, a lender will begin a foreclosure by filing a complaint in the appropriate county court based on the location of the property. Lenders have the option, however, of filing foreclosures in federal court instead. Some believe that federal courts act more efficiently on foreclosures that state-level courts do, but others say that it is harder for lenders to sell properties in federal foreclosures. The U.S. Marshall Service handles federal foreclosure sales, while that responsibility at the state level usually falls on the county sheriff’s department.

How to Handle a Notice of Foreclosure

Assuming that you are least four months behind on your payments, you most likely have received a notice of default in the mail. However, when the lender files for foreclosure, you must be personally served with notice of the lender’s filing. You have 30 days in which to file a response to the complaint and summons or the court could enter a default judgment in favor of the lender.

The best thing you could possibly do in such a situation is to immediately call a qualified lawyer to talk about your options. Your strategy for moving forward will depend on your unique circumstances, and it is important to act quickly.

Call a Wheaton Real Estate Attorney for Help

If you are facing possible foreclosure, contact an experienced Wheaton residential foreclosure attorney at Stock, Carlson & Duff LLC today. Call 630-665-2500 to schedule a confidential consultation with a member of our team. We will help ensure that your rights and best interests are fully protected.

 

Sources:

http://www.mondaq.com/unitedstates/x/241366/Insolvency+Bankruptcy/Is+Federal+Court+Really+a+Better+Place+to+Foreclose

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?ActID=2017&ChapterID=56&SeqStart=107100000&SeqEnd=115800000