Financing Your Forever Home: A Primer on New Construction Home Loans

When deciding between buying or building a new home, one question we hear often is, How do we finance it? Often people assume that they need a mortgage for their new-build home, and are surprised when we tell them about new home construction loans instead.  We asked the experts at Chicago Construction Loans (Associated Bank) to give a primer on everything you need to know about new home construction loans.

Tue, May 15, 2018
Rick Thompson

Choosing Your Neighborhood in Chicagoland: Western Suburbs

As the third largest city in the country, Chicago covers 234 square miles. But Chicagoland—the sprawling suburbs and towns surrounding the city—clocks in at 10,857 square miles. That’s a lot of space to cover, and if you’re unfamiliar with the area, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and turned around by the range and difference of suburbs.

Wed, Apr 18, 2018
Scott Sanders

The Real Costs of Building a Green Home in Chicago

A lot of people are attracted by the idea of building an eco-friendly home but believe the green construction costs just don't make it a practical option for them. If you hold such beliefs, it's time to re-examine them.

Sat, Dec 2, 2017
Scott Sanders
The 10 most crucial questions to ask your builder  Get your building project started out right by taking time to save time with  this free guide to working with your builder. Download Now

Seven Creative Ways to Save for a Down Payment

Real estate and buying a home comes with a lot of uncertainty, advice, and general … fear. It will likely be the largest purchase and decision of your life, so those feelings are completely founded. You’ve probably heard most about the cost associated with becoming a homeowner – and just how large of a process (and seemingly impossible) it is to secure the down payment. I’m here to tell you it’s not impossible. Here are some creative ways to save for your forever home’s down payment.

Mon, Nov 20, 2017
Rick Thompson

A Guide to a Greener Chicago

Everyone wants to do what they can for the environment. Green choices are often fiscally sound – they save you money by decreasing energy usage – and they let you do your part in preserving a healthy environment for future generations.

Mon, Nov 6, 2017
Scott Sanders

Who's Buying Houses Now? A Look at Chicago's Generations of Buyers

If you are a millennial, home buying and settling into a mortgage may not have been a dream in the past. Now, as you grow older, statistics show that you are finally ready to nest and find the perfect home. When is the right time to act on that impulse? According to experts, both nationally and in the Chicago area, you shouldn't wait too long to fulfill your dream.

Mon, Oct 23, 2017
Scott Sanders
The 10 most crucial questions to ask your builder  Get your building project started out right by taking time to save time with  this free guide to working with your builder. Download Now

What Stands Between You & Your Forever Home

Many things can stand between you and the home you plan to live in for the rest of your life (and perhaps pass on to your children). But, over time, BrightLeaf Homes has found that the most common thing holding people back is themselves.

Fri, Sep 22, 2017
Alex Thompson

What is a Gut Rehab & Should You Consider One?

You may discover a property in an excellent location, or that it's the size you always dreamed of. There's only one problem - everything else about the house needs to be changed. A gut rehab removes everything but the "bones" of the house. You end up with an empty canvas for your home, allowing you to modernize older buildings or fix widespread problems. This type of rehab can be worth it, but you have a few things to keep in mind. 
Thu, Jun 15, 2017
Alex Thompson

2017: How to Buy a House in a Seller's Market

If you're searching for a home in Chicago this summer, you're going to run into competition. It's a seller's market around here, with Curbed reporting a 9.3 percent increase in houses sold and the prices going up by 12.4 percent compared to last year. Here's what to look for and know about buying a house in the current market.
Mon, Jun 5, 2017
Rick Thompson
The 10 most crucial questions to ask your builder  Get your building project started out right by taking time to save time with  this free guide to working with your builder. Download Now
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