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When you’re house-hunting in Chicago, you must not rush into buying a house you’ll regret. Finding your dream house is a long process that takes some effort and knowledge. It can be frustrating or difficult to find the perfect home because of the number of options, especially in Chicago. Many people give up after viewing a certain number of properties and settle for something less than ideal. However, if you have the right tips and tricks and know the necessary information, you will have no problem while house-hunting in Chicago. But before all of that, take dive into a complete guide to find out everything you need to know when house-hunting in Chicago!

8 steps when house-hunting in Chicago

So, you have decided to find a home in Chicago and need to start house-hunting. This can be overwhelming, especially if you don’t have any prior experience with the market. But don’t worry, with these 7 steps you will be buying your dream home in no time!

A person starting their house-hunting in Chicago on time
House-hunting in Chicago takes time and effort, start early!

Start on time

When you decide you want to buy a home in Chicago, you should start planning as early as possible. The process is long and often unplanned circumstances or problems can come up. If you start on time, you’ll be able to approach this calmly and solve it along the way. Moreover, when you have time and aren’t stressed, you’ll make better decisions and won’t settle for something just because you’re in a time crunch. So, as soon as you can, start researching and gathering information. Find some numbers here and there and even ask around if anybody knows a good real estate agent. Once you’ve found the home for you, you can focus on finding reputable, experienced movers, like furniture movers Chicago, and set the moving date. This way you will relocate to your new home with ease and with no stress.

Set a budget before house-hunting in Chicago

Before you start looking at homes and then for movers Chicago to relocate you there, you need to set your budget and look at your financial state. Not only that, but you have to be realistic too. What exactly can you afford? Will your salary change after moving? Do you expect any other large costs in the next year? These are all questions you should ask yourself when looking at your budget.

Next, consider how big a mortgage you can be approved for and how much you can set aside monthly for this purpose. Additionally, getting your finances in order will help you in gaining approval for a loan.

Once you’ve calculated everything, the next step you should take is to cut down on debt and start saving up as much as you can for a down payment. That’s the first big expense when it comes to homeownership.

Be organized and know your financial state, and you won’t have trouble finding your dream home.

Decide if you want to renovate

This is very important, especially if you’re relocating as a family. Make sure you and your partner are on the same page about the home you’re looking for. If you want to buy a fixer-upper, that usually takes even more planning and effort than buying a home that’s good to go. But, if you want to customize and style your home to your wishes, doing it yourself is often the best option. If you decide that that’s the road you want to take, start planning as soon as possible! Calculate your renovation costs and start looking for homes that fit your price range.

A woman looking at a laptop
Make sure you are informed about the retail market in Chicago!

Look at Prices

Prices vary greatly across different neighborhoods and areas. You need to be informed about the cost of living in Chicago. Depending on what you’re looking for, you will find all the information you need on the internet. Just make sure you research thoroughly. The more you know the better! Here is a list of average real estate prices in some of Chicago’s best-known neighborhoods:

  • Edgewater: $245,000
  • Uptown: $299,000 to
  • Norwood Park: $373,000
  • Edison Park: $436,000
  • Hyde Park: $245,000
  • Mount Greenwood: $260,000
  • Douglas Park: $275,000
  • Avondale: $506,000
  • Lincoln Park: $511,000
  • Forest Glen: $555,000

While looking at home prices, you might wonder how much the whole moving process might cost you as well. Check out moving quotes Chicago to get a precise moving quote! This way you will know how much money you will have to spare for your new home, but for your relocation as well.

Research Neighborhoods

If you haven’t heard, Chicago is famous for its 70 different neighborhoods and contains many different people and cultures within them. Of course, every neighborhood has its pros and cons when it comes to, safety, location, transit, housing, schools, entertainment, parks, etc. This is why you should sit down and research neighborhoods. Some neighborhoods are much more family-friendly while others are for the younger, nightlife crowd. A good real estate agent can also help you with this step if you feel overwhelmed at any point. You can also check out to see more of Chicago’s best neighborhoods. This will give you an idea of which area will best suit your lifestyle.

Hire a Real Estate Agent

Okay, so, you’ve finished your online research and have a remote idea of what you want and need. Your finances are in check but you still need professional help. It’s great to hire a local real estate agent to help you further in the process. There are many options to choose from, so make sure you ask around or look on the internet for a reputable realtor.

Additionally, if your move is a long-distance one and you have no idea what to expect, a realtor from Chicago will be very valuable. They can give you information about everything and help you make the right decision. They also take a lot of other weight off your shoulders such as paperwork.

Submit an Offer on a Home

Making an offer on a home can be very stressful because you usually need to be quick once you see something you like. Keep your budget in mind when looking at homes, but be aware that it’s been a seller’s market in Chicago for the last few years. This means you might have to invest more than you planned, which is why you should consider how much exactly you can spend over your budget and still stay afloat. Your real estate agent will be helping you review homes and will advise you about making a fair offer.

After that, you make an offer and wait for a response. They can accept, reject, ask for a higher price than yours, etc. Once your offer is accepted, you sign your contract, get packing services Chicago to help you pack your valuables, and relocate to your new home. Your house-hunting in Chicago has been a success!

Two people shaking hands
Once you sign your contract, your new Chicago adventure begins!

Close on your new home in Chicago

The last stage of buying a home in Chicago is closing the deal. This involves a lot of paperwork, mortgage processing, an inspection of the home, and signing a contract. It might be very boring, but it has to be done, and just think how happy you’ll be once it’s all over. The process of closing on your new home will take roughly 60 days. So, once you sign the offer, you have two months to plan your actual move.

House-hunting in Chicago doesn’t have to be stressful

House-hunting in Chicago can be a real challenge. In such a big city with many different neighborhoods, it can be hard to stay motivated when looking for a home. However, if you approach your finances realistically, and research prices, neighborhoods, and local real estate agents, you won’t have to worry about a thing! Make sure you know what to expect and enjoy the process!

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