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Special Considerations for Seniors Purchasing a Home

 Posted on June 13, 2024 in Residential Real Estate

IL real estate lawyerIt might surprise you to know that in 2023, Baby Boomers (those born between 1946 and 1964) made up the largest percentage of home buyers at 39 percent. This older generation edged out millennials to take the top home-buying spot. With today’s high interest rates and overpriced housing market, homeownership is getting tougher for all generations. While some can make homeownership a reality despite these issues, many younger Americans are being pushed out of the market entirely, with the typical age to buy a first home now sitting at 36 years old.

This means if you are in the market to buy a new home and you are a senior citizen, you are in good company. That being said, there are issues you need to consider now that might not have been on your radar when you were younger. Before you sign on the dotted line, you must speak to a knowledgeable real estate attorney. This is not a time in your life when you can afford to make any financial missteps; your Illinois real estate attorney will look over your proposed real estate transaction to ensure you are making a sound financial purchase.

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What to Consider Before Buying a "Fixer-Upper"

 Posted on May 08, 2024 in Residential Real Estate

IL real estate lawyerChicagoland is filled with historic homes. Many of these historic homes are beautifully built and crafted with quality materials. However, the interiors of these homes often need work to bring them up to modern standards before they are move-in ready. Investing in and restoring a historic home can be deeply rewarding but can also be frustrating and expensive. Before you commit to purchasing a home that requires significant work, ensure that you have an accurate understanding of what actually needs to be done, how long it will take, and what the cost will be. A Cook County, IL real estate attorney can help you plan your purchase.

5 Factors to Account for When Buying a Home That Needs Work 

A few of the many factors to consider before purchasing a fixer-upper include:

  • Is the chain of title clear? The older the home, the more likely it is that there is an unresolved claim to ownership somewhere in its history. You will need an attorney to perform a thorough title search to ensure that the house comes with clear title. 

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5 Types of Real Estate Sales to Avoid

 Posted on April 05, 2024 in Residential Real Estate

IL real estate lawyerWhen you are buying residential real estate, it is best to be represented by a knowledgeable Chicago, IL real estate lawyer. An attorney can help you avoid the many pitfalls that may come with buying a home or multi-unit building. Residential real estate is particularly expensive in the current market, so buying a property is likely a major investment. Whether you plan to live in your new property or rent it out for a profit, failing to notice a major problem that an attorney could have caught can leave you with immense buyer’s remorse. An attorney can carefully investigate the property itself, its chain of title, and the proposed deed to ensure that you are making a sound and advisable purchase.

Identifying Problems in Residential Real Estate Transactions 

There are some types of issues with a property and some types of deeds that may suggest that you should reconsider a purchase. Problems that may indicate you should walk away from a purchase include:

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How Do Land Trusts Work in Illinois?

 Posted on March 14, 2024 in Estate Planning

IL estate planA land trust can be a valuable estate planning tool for those who own real property - land and the houses or buildings on it. If you are a landowner, using a land trust to pass your real estate property on to your loved ones after you are no longer here to enjoy it can protect your legacy and ensure that your intended beneficiaries receive what you want them to without struggling through probate. A land trust can be used similarly to how a revocable living trust is used. To create a land trust, you will transfer ownership of your real property to the trust. While you are alive, you can remain the trustee with full control over the property. When you pass, your beneficiaries already have an ownership interest in the trust and can simply have the title transferred. An Englewood, IL estate planning attorney can help you determine how a land trust can fit into your complete estate plan.

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Tips for First-Time Homebuyers

 Posted on February 13, 2024 in Residential Real Estate

IL real estate lawyerBuying a home for the first time can be an intimidating process. There are a lot of steps you must take on your path to home ownership and a lot of moving parts in a real estate sale. If you are planning on purchasing your first home soon, it is strongly advised that you work with an experienced Country Club Hills, IL, real estate attorney. Those who are not familiar with some of the legal details related to the different types of deeds and how they are transferred, how the home inspection process works, and what to look for during a title search can usually benefit from a lawyer’s help. A lawyer can do much more to protect you than a real estate agent can. Your lawyer can review all of the documents you need to sign at closing and ensure that the transfer of property will go as smoothly as possible

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Tips for Buying a Property for Rental Income

 Posted on January 20, 2024 in Residential Real Estate

IL real estate lawyerIf you are planning to purchase a residential property that you will rent to tenants, there are a few specific things you should look for or avoid. Right now, the market is excellent for potential landlords. Housing prices have finally begun to drop back to somewhat more reasonable levels, making it easier to buy a house now than it was a few years ago. If you are purchasing an apartment building, duplex, or other multi-family dwelling, there may be additional costs involved as the seller likely knows what the property is worth when rented out. Rent prices have increased steadily, putting landlords at a slight advantage. However, there is some liability - and a good bit of work - involved in being a landlord. Working with a Cook County, IL, real estate attorney is generally the best way to protect yourself and your investment

What to Look for and Avoid When Buying Rental Properties in Cook County, IL

When you are renting a property you own to long-term tenants, you will need to pay strict attention to a variety of local housing code ordinances. You will likely be accountable for maintaining the property so that it is up to code and meets all local requirements. Some helpful tips include: 

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What is a Transfer on Death Instrument?

 Posted on December 15, 2023 in Estate Planning

IL estate lawyerA transfer on death instrument (TODI) is exactly what it sounds like. This type of legal document allows you to name a person who will have the right to take ownership of a piece of your property after you have passed away. By using a TODI, you can keep your real property out of reach of the probate court. Putting a house through probate can be difficult. The fees associated with probate are steep, and in some cases, the house needs to be sold to cover costs. Your designated beneficiary can simply transfer the deed into their name simply by presenting your death certificate to the Recorder of Deeds. This estate planning option is simple, fast, and costs little. You should consult a qualified Roseland, IL, estate planning and real estate attorney before executing this legal document. 

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If I Buy a Property, Do I Have to Honor Existing Leases?

 Posted on November 16, 2023 in Residential Real Estate

IL real estate lawyerUnless the apartment building you are buying is brand new, there are almost certainly tenants living in the building. As much as you may wish to start with a “clean slate” empty building and craft your community with purpose, you must honor existing leases. However, you may not be obligated to renew leases for existing tenants if you are not happy with the current renters. In most cases, you can simply allow the tenants’ leases to expire. Before you take any action, it is important to speak with a qualified Chicago real estate attorney who has experience with the sale of multi-unit buildings. Tenants’ rights is a complex area of law, and running afoul of it can lead to serious penalties. The laws that apply to renters in your building may vary by municipality and in some cases, the building. 

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If I Am Selling My House, Do I Need a Lawyer?

 Posted on October 18, 2023 in Residential Real Estate

IL real estate lawyerWhile a lawyer is not strictly necessary when you are selling your house, having one can help immensely. Selling your house is likely one of the most complex transactions you will ever engage in. Even smaller and older houses are quite valuable at the moment. Real estate prices are some of the highest they have been in a very, very long time. You likely stand to profit tremendously if your home sale is successful. A lawyer can help make sure that everything goes smoothly while protecting you from possible future liability. There is a certain amount of risk involved in any real estate transaction, but your attorney can take steps to minimize your risk, such as making sure the proper title insurance is in place. There is a nearly endless amount of different legal issues that can come up during a real estate transaction. Having an Illinois real estate lawyer already on board and prepared to address potential concerns can set you up for a successful sale. 

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How Does a Land Trust Work?

 Posted on September 14, 2023 in Estate Planning

Chatham, IL estate planning lawyerLands trusts are living trusts that give the beneficiary full or partial legal ownership over a property. The person who establishes the trust is the grantor and the owner of the property. A trustee manages the trust itself. 

This estate planning strategy allows individuals and business owners to protect their property. The entire estate planning process can be difficult, so it is always smart to consult an experienced attorney. They can ensure that your land trust is legally binding and can guide you into making the best informed decision for your unique circumstance. 

What Are the Advantages of a Land Trust in Illinois?

Land trusts are usually established by real estate investors and estate planning property owners because of their advantages. Here are a few of those benefits

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