Britta Rivera Venture

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CHICAGO 2012: NATO SUMMIT SHUTS DOWN REAL ESTATE TRANSACTIONS

This weekend is the start of Chicago hosting the Nato Summit.  While it may be good for some business owner’s, it has definitely shut down Chicago’s real estate business.  In certain parts of the city, others are being hit by the restrictions on travel, but the real loss is in home sales.

The housing market has had its challenges and is finally on the way to recovery in Chicago, so this halt has agents on edge.  With the recent surge of investor’s and buyer’s hitting the market, losing a valuable weekend of property showings and sales transactions is an unwelcomed challenge.

Want to see that special home?  Ready to put in an offer on the home of your dreams?  Well, if you are looking in the heart of the city, this likely will need to wait until next Tuesday when real estate transactions resume.

Many say that the Nato Summit offers Chicago worldwide exposure, but is the loss of the flow of business worth it?  Not sure what you think, but losing the important weeks before summer when the housing market typically slows down, is a setback.

DO YOU NEED TO SELL OR BUY A HOME IN CHICAGO?  READ THIS AND SEE HOW TO MAKE IT HAPPEN!

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May 19, 2012 Posted by | CHICAGO REAL ESTATE | , , , , , | Leave a comment

CHICAGO: TIPS ON BUYING A HOME IN TODAY’S MARKET; FOLLOW THESE BASIC STEPS TO SAVE TIME

Important Steps to Buying a New Home 

Get pre-approved for a mortgage with a professional lender.  It is important to have a pre-approval letter in advance of search; it will be required when submitting a contract.

Inform your realtor of the features important to you in your new home.

  • Price Range
  • Preferred location
  • Square footage/ Amount of Bedrooms/Baths
  • Proximity to public transportation
  • Parking or garage space
  • In-home Washer/Dryer
  • Preferred style of home
  • Your real estate agent will send a list of homes for your review.  Select your top choices by marking them as “interested”.
  •  BEGIN YOUR HOME SEARCH!
  • Once you find a property, discuss with your agent the price you would like to offer the seller.  Your agent will provide area comps so that you can make an educated decision.
  • Remember, if you are purchasing a short sale they can take 60-120 days from start to closing.  It is a long process, but if you have time to wait and are extremely patient, great deals are available.  They are typically sold “as is” so buyer is responsible for repairs.
  • If you are purchasing a foreclosed property, make sure to read the notes carefully.   Many need a lot of work, may have code violations and are sold “as is”.  Buyer is responsible for repairs in most cases.
  • Your agent will then present the offer to the seller’s agent. The seller will either accept or respond with a counteroffer.  Be prepared to counter multiple times.
  • CONTRACT IS APPROVED!
  • After you have agreed on a final price, the seller will ask that you write an earnest money deposit check (initial down payment) typically for $1,000 to $5,000 to hold the property.  It is in the form of a Cashier’s Check and your agent will inform you of the exact figure.
  • Be sure to make a copy of the earnest money check for your lender in advance of submitting.
  • It is strongly recommended that you hire a real estate attorney to assist with negotiations.  Your attorney will review the purchase contract and review the final documents at closing.  Their fees vary and are paid at closing, ask them in advance.
  • The purchase contract is signed by you and the seller.  Your agent will fax it to your lender and attorney for review.
  • The “Attorney Review” period now begins.  Typically the contract has to be reviewed and approved within 5-7 business days of accepted contract date.
  • During attorney review, it is recommended that home inspection by a certified inspector be performed.  This should be ordered immediately after the initial contract is signed.
  • HOME INSPECTIONS
  • If the home inspection uncovers any issues with the property, your attorney can try to negotiate the contract to ensure any necessary repairs are made or credits for repairs are given.  Unless home is sold “as is”.
  • If you are buying a brand new property it will typically come with a 1-year warranty therefore a home inspection is optional.
  • Meet with your  Loan Officer to sign a loan application and review the mortgage approval process.
  • Do not make any major purchases, apply for credit cards, etc. until AFTER CLOSING.  This additional activity may lead to your credit report being pulled which will lower your credit score.
  • Once your attorney approves the purchase contract and inspection is complete, your lender will order an appraisal.
  • Per the Purchase Contract, additional earnest money may or may not be required by the purchase contract (ask your agent).  If you do provide additional earnest money, be sure to make a copy of the check and fax it to your lender.
  • When the purchase contract is signed a “Financing Commitment Contingency” date is approximately 30-45 days and must be met. If your loan approval needs additional time, make certain to inform your attorney so he may request an extension.
  • The mortgage commitment will be sent to your attorney who will work with the seller’s attorney to schedule the closing date, time and location.
  • GETTING READY FOR CLOSING
  • Prior to closing, you will need to obtain the necessary homeowners insurance.  Contact a professional insurance company and obtain several quotes, prior to securing.
  • Typically the day before your closing your lender or attorney will advise you of how much money you will need to bring to the closing.
  • Once you know the dollar amount, you will need to obtain a cashier’s check made payable to the Title Company.  A wire transfer of funds is also required in some circumstances.
  • At the closing you will need to bring the following:
  • Cashier’s check (unless you process via wire transfer)
  • Valid driver’s license or state ID
  • Personal Checkbook (just in case the figures are slightly off which is common)
  • Your attorney will be at the closing and will review all the closing documents with you.
  • YOUR KEYS ARE PROVIDED AT CLOSING AND IT IS TIME TO MOVE IN!

IF YOU NEED ASSISTANCE WITH BUYING A HOME IN CHICAGO, CONTACT BRITTA RIVERA VENTURE GROUP AT 312.806.3297.  

February 25, 2012 Posted by | CHICAGO REAL ESTATE, REAL ESTATE NEWS | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

AMERICAN IDOL JENNIFER HUDSON; BUYS $2.8 MILLION MANSION IN CHICAGO’S BURR RIDGE NEIGHBORHOOD

PHOTO FROM CHICAGO CURBED WEBSITE 

UPDATE…RUMOR HAS IT SHE CANCELED THE DEAL DUE TO HEIGHTENED PRESS!

Chicago native JENNIFER HUDSON is finally able to live in style, after being discovered on “American Idol”!  She went on to hit the jackpot with an Oscar and Grammy.  Now that she’s married and has a child, it is time to treat herself to luxury.  

According to Chicago Magazine,  last week Hudson contracted on a stunning 12,000-square-foot mansion in Burr Ridge, located in Chicago.  The six-bedroom, eight-bath residence is reportedly listed at $2.795 million.

Bank of America foreclosed on the mortgages totaling $2.4 million, but the home was originally priced at $4.2 million.  It seems like even the stars are finding great deals on housing in this rocky real estate market.  Compared to the original listing price, that’s a savings of 33% off the home…You go girl!  I keep saying this is an great time to buy…she has incredible timing.

If you are also searching for a great deal on a Chicago home, begin viewing incredible homes now or register here for your FREE list of available residences.  Call BRV today for more information on the best deals in Chicago at 312.475.4548. 

READ MORE IN THE CHICAGO TRIBUNE

December 1, 2011 Posted by | CHICAGO REAL ESTATE | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

2011 HOUSING MARKET: TELL THE MEDIA TO “SHUT THE FRONT DOOR!”

The housing market is still in recovery mode, but this is actually great news for potential buyers.  While many homeowners have decided to short sale their homes and foreclosure properties are coming on-line daily, it offers incredible deals for buyers.  A recent top bank executive suggested 800,000 more foreclosures may be released in Illinois, during the first quarter of 2012.  Unfortunately, this is a bad situation for sellers and banks but it is an amazing opportunity for someone looking for superior pricing.  However, the media seems to only promote the negative aspect of the current housing market.  It makes me want to scream “SHUT THE FRONT DOOR!”

It is shocking to hear all the negative press about the stale housing market and very little about the historically low-interest rates and record low housing prices with savings up to 50% off.  Why aren’t they pushing the fact that this is the BEST time in history to buy on a daily basis?

The rental rates in Chicago have continued to rise at a record pace, some saying by about 10% by years end.  This is a ridiculous amount for the average renter and they are beginning to feel the pinch.  Who wants to pay over $1300 for a one bedroom and over $2000 for a two bedroom in the city when you can own for that amount?  It makes me sad each time I rent a home to a well qualified potential buyer, because it is clear they could purchase a home with a much lower mortgage payment than the rent they are willing to pay to a landlord.  Unfortunately, the media has scared them into becoming a renter so some are hesitant to buy.

While it is clear, some renters are just not yet in the position to buy a home, some networks give the impression the banks are not lending at all.  Additionally, they make you believe you need a huge down payment to qualify for a loan.  Is this a scheme to discourage  people from buying?  Why not talk about FHA (3.5% down) loans available on many homes, offering more relaxed guidelines?  Or NACA (Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America) which is a non-for-profit organization offering extremely flexible loans with some of the LOWEST INTEREST RATES and no money down to qualified buyers?

Multiple neighborhoods throughout the city offer two bedrooms originally priced at $300k now selling for under $100k.  Why wouldn’t anyone  jump on these deals versus renting?   Well, there are many savvy buyers doing just that, and they smile each day they walk into their new home.  This is especially true for those who may have lost their home in a short sale a couple of years back; while they may have lost hundreds of thousands of dollars in that transaction, the bank probably took the bulk of the loss if not all of it.  These buyers can now feel redemption in buying a new home at a great price.

In the end, with all the boarded up foreclosed properties scattered throughout the city, it’s disappointing that the banks and Government did not come up with a better plan.  Had they taken the stimulus money and truly offered loan modifications to more homeowners, we probably would not be in this mess.

WHY DO YOU THINK THEY ARE NOT ENCOURAGING BUYING RIGHT NOW?  Why aren’t banks running a marketing campaign promoting loans available in the current market?  Do they want less mortgage loans on their books?

It is important to read this INCREDIBLE ARTICLE ON TOP REASONS TO BUY A HOME RIGHT NOW.  If you are interested in a list of available residences in the Chicagoland area start viewing incredible homes or register hereIn the years to come, you will be glad you did.  If you would like more information on NACA home buying programs, please call 312.475.4548.

September 5, 2011 Posted by | REAL ESTATE NEWS | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

BRITTA RIVERA VENTURE GROUP ALIGNS WITH KOENIG & STREY REAL LIVING; CHICAGO TEAM OF REAL ESTATE PROFESSIONALS

BRITTA RIVERA VENTURE GROUP has launched; assembling a team of experienced agents aligned with the premier real estate firm, Koenig & Strey Real LivingBRV offers clients and developers superior service by a group of real estate professionals, dedicated to the real estate industry.  BRV team members have many years of experience in new construction sales & marketing, as well as renting, listing and selling resales in the Chicagoland area.

The unique aspect of this new venture is the level of experience and professionalism the team offers.  The list of team members include, team leader, Britta Rivera who has been involved in real estate sales and leasing since 1993.  During her many years in the real estate industry, she has held the position of General Manager and Vice President of Sales for multiple local, National and international brokerage firms.  Rounding off the team is, Catherine Hughey, Lona Reiling, and David Silverman.

BRV assists buyers, sellers and  renters with their housing needs.  They specialize in the sales & marketing new construction developments, condo conversions, resale listings, and buyer/renter representation.  BRV team members have also been involved in launching dozens of successful multi-million dollar developments in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs.  BRV also works with a short sale negotiation team to streamline the process, for clients involved in a short sale transaction.

Let this professional team of agents provide the extraordinary service you deserve.  Please contact team members at 312.475.1400.  Visit our website for a list of available homes in Chicago and contact information.

Ask about our City of Chicago Employee Incentive Program!

RENT, BUY, SELL…WE CAN HELP!

Looking to grow your business?  Experienced Real Estate agents with extraordinary service standards, team spirit and Illinois RE license, please contact brivera@koenigstrey.com or call 312.475.4548.  

BRV is growing our team and have only two more openings available.  Limited opportunity.

July 16, 2011 Posted by | CHICAGO REAL ESTATE, REAL ESTATE NEWS | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 32 Comments

RESIDENCES AT THE VIC; STUNNING 3 BEDROOM

3140 N. Sheffield

The Residences at The Vic is a stylish building located on the north side of Chicago at 3140 N. Sheffield.  Interested buyers can take advantage of a stunning three bedroom condominium, now available for $569,900 (pricing subject to change, call for updates).

The interior finishes include; an upscale kitchen with designer cabinetry, Monogram stainless steel appliances and granite countertops, upgraded master bath includes whirlpool tub, living areas feature wide plank wood flooring, convenient in-home super capacity washer & dryer, and an amazing Bravia flat screen T.V.  Also includes heated garage parking.

Agents interested in viewing the property use MLS #: 07797680.  If you are a buyer interested in viewing the property without an exclusive agent agreement, please email britta.rivera@comcast.net or call 312.475.4548.

May 20, 2011 Posted by | CHICAGO REAL ESTATE | , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

   

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