This world is crazy…social media centered for better and for worse! Take caution with your posts so you don’t have issues selling your home! Watch this 2 minute video of a true story that just happened with one of my listings. From twitter 2014!!!
Woohoo! So honored to be a part of the bringing @TheAmericanDreamTV to Nashville Saturdays on the CW network. I was nervous and my hair was a little too big but if you can look past that, take a gander at my clip on new home building in Nashville. It’s SO critical to have strong REALTOR® representation when building. It’s a very different process from buying a re-sale from contracts and contingencies through design and inspections…empower yourself with a strong REALTOR® partner! Oh, and checkout my favorite listing in Green Hills—- it went UNDER CONTRACT 9 days after the show aired in a multiple offer situation. Yes! Have an empowered week! – Jacey
EZ Checklist – Prepare Your Home for Fall/ Winter
By Jacey Cook – Oct 20, 2017
Hey Everyone! Fall is the perfect time to take care of the little things that can make a big difference for you and your home! I compiled this list to make your life easy. Most of these can be done by a regular home-owner but a few require professional service!
- Clear out the Gutters & Trim Trees – Remove leaves and other debris from your drainpipes and gutters to prevent clogging. Trim back trees touching any rooflines.
- Fertilize Your Lawn – According to experts, fertilizing your lawn in fall will protect it over the winter and help it green up faster come springtime.
- Check Your Heating System – Do a check of your home’s heating vents to make sure they’re not blocked or covered by furniture, carpeting, or curtains. Dust vents and clean or change all filters. Make an appointment for an annual heating system check-up service.
- Clean the Fireplace/Chimney – You can clear ash and charred wood from the fireplace yourself, but leave the chimney cleaning to a professional. Have the chimney cleaner (chimney sweep J) check the damper to ensure it tightly closes to prevent drafts
- Store Air Conditioners – If you have removable ACs, unplug, drain, dust and clean them before covering/storing.
- Check Your Home for Drafts – Save energy, and reduce your heating bills by examining windows and doors for cracks and sealing them with weather-stripping and/or caulk.
- Ready Outdoor Faucets & Irrigation Systems – Drain/remove/cover outdoor faucets and irrigation systems to prevent breakage. It’s much more fun to do this before it is freezing.
- Inspect Your Roof – Check for damaged or curled shingles, corroded flashing, or leaky vents. Use common sense. Consult a professional if not easy!
- Drain & Clean Your Water Heater – Clear out any debris that has settled in the tank.
- Perform a Home Safety Check – IMPORTANT annual ritual. Test smoke detectors and CO2 monitors, inspect (or install) fire extinguishers, review fire escape and storm protection plans.
- Drain, Store & Sharpen Your Lawn Equipment – Over time, unused gas goes through chemical changes which lead to gum and harmful deposits that can destroy lawn equipment. Usually around mid-October you should drain the tanks of your mower, leaf blower, and weed eater. Fall is also a good time to get your lawn mower blades sharpened so they’ll be ready for next Spring.
HAVE A HAPPY HAPPY FALL!
Tax Liens and Judgements to come off many consumer’s credit report
Effective July 1st, 2017, Transunion, Equifax and Experian will be excluding tax liens and some civil debts/judgements from consumer’s credit reports. The Consumer Data Industry Organization has stated that this initiative is to ensure consumer identifications are accurate and current.
In a move that will boost many consumers credit scores, the three main credit reporting agencies will remove tax liens and civil debts if reports on those particular obligations do not include: names, addresses, and social security numbers and/or date of birth according to the CDIA.
Federal law requires that accurate information is provided to ensure accurate credit reporting. Consumers have complained that paid debts are still appearing on their credit report. The National Consumer Assistance Plan will help consumers with prior challenges to obtain loans they otherwise may have been declined.
This is really good news for the housing market obviously, as this news will have an immediate impact on about 10% of Americans. Couple this information with my prior blog on low down/no down payment mortgages and you end up with great news for many people. With the Dow over 20,000, looser credit guidelines and this recent news on credit reporting; times are looking pretty good.
Chicago-area home sales jumped last month, according to data released this morning.
Double-digit growth in both the number of homes sold and their median sale price made for the region’s strongest real estate market since March 2015.
In a nine-county metro area, 8,093 homes sold, up 16 percent from November 2015, and the most homes sold in any November in Illinois Association of Realtors data, which goes back to 2008. It was the biggest percentage increase for the area since June 2015.
In the city, 1,881 homes sold in November, 11.3 percent more than a year earlier, according to IAR. That was the most homes sold in November in Chicago since 2009 and the biggest percentage increase in the city since a rise of 21.1 percent in February 2015.
The median price of homes sold in Chicago last month was $260,000, up 11.3 percent from the year-earlier figure. That was the biggest year-over-year price increase in the city of any month so far this year.
For the nine-county area, the median price in November was $215,000, up 10.3 percent from November 2015.
“The sharp uptick in sales reflects consumers’ desire to enter the homeownership marketplace as opportunities present themselves,” Matt Silver, president of the Chicago Association of Realtors and a partner at Urban Real Estate, said in a statement.
Recent and expected increases in interest rates and tight inventory have been spurring buyers to make their deals, Silver said in the statement.
The front of a contemporary-style house under construction on Hermitage Avenue in Ravenswood gives only one hint that there’s something unusual about it: The front door opens flush with the sidewalk, a rarity in Chicago.
When the house is completed in January, it will be just as hard to spot the differences inside, but they’ll be there: toilet paper holders and towel racks built to support an adult’s weight, cabinets mostly installed lower than the norm and no bump-up threshold doorways.
The home is the work of Frances Kao, a developer whose focus is making homes that suit disabled people without looking institutional. To be priced at $1.7 million, it’s the first of four developments—including two condo projects with a combined 11 units and a building with two rental apartments—that she expects to complete in 2017.
“Grab bars around a toilet are ugly and confront you with your disability,” said Kao, a retired attorney who’s the principal in the neophyte Chicago development firm PH2 Square. “So the question I want to answer is: How do we make these things beautiful?”
Her solution is to build bathrooms where the toilet paper holder and towel racks are rated by their manufacturers to hold a person’s weight, installed on walls that are double-braced behind. Instead of grabbing hospital-style bars to lift and lower oneself to use the toilet, a resident can rely on the toilet paper holder and the towel racks for leverage. In the shower, soap dishes and other fixtures get the same treatment.
Elsewhere in the house will be features like countertops at multiple heights to accommodate a family where some people might need to do kitchen work while sitting in a wheelchair, an elevator and access from the outdoors at ground level to eliminate the need for a ramp or other adaptation for a disabled resident. Kao says these features will also appear in the other three projects she has at various stages of development.
Marca Bristo, president and CEO of Access Living, a Chicago-based advocacy group for people with disabilities, said the time is right for Kao’s projects, which she hasn’t seen. “We’ve got to get over looking at things that are functionally helping us as if it’s OK for them to be aesthetically problematic,” Bristo said. “These things shouldn’t have to jump out at you.”
It also means that older buyers who may not need a disabled-access home now won’t shy away from it because of its adapted looks.
Designed by Searl, Lamaster Howe Architects in Chicago, the house has a stucco and brick exterior punctuated by oversized single-pane windows. Hallways, bathrooms and showers are extra wide to accommodate a wheelchair, “but that width is something everyone likes to see in a modern home anyway,” Kao said.
“It’s beautifully designed is what you’ll notice, not the adaptations,” said Anne Laughlin, the @properties broker representing the house. “That’s pioneering.”
Bristo said she does not know of another homebuilder in Chicago with a similar program. Legislation and ordinances that dictate construction of accessible housing do not cover single-family homes, she said.
Putting exterior doors level with the sidewalk is a key part of making the home inviting, both Bristo and Kao said. Wheelchair ramps often look awkward and eat up space, Kao said. “You should be able to enter your house the way anyone else does,” she said, “through the front door.”
The 4,400-square-foot structure combines a 3,700-foot main house with an attached 700-square-foot studio apartment at the back, at ground level. The two are connected at the mudroom.
Kao envisions the pair being occupied by a family in the main house and an elderly relative in the back. The senior, she said, “can have a private space, but the family is close by.” It can also flex to suit another family’s arrangement, such as using the apartment as an office or guest house. It has its own entrance, kitchen and full bath.
Building from the ground up instead of retrofitting an existing home gives Kao leeway to do things like double-brace the insides of bathroom walls, said Mark Nobriga, a program director in the Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities. His program, Home Mod, helps residents modify their space to accommodate a disability.
“When we do a bathroom, we have to gut-rehab it to make sure it can be braced properly, and to verify there are studs where there are supposed to be studs,” Nobriga said. “It’s always going to be easier if you build it right the first time.”
Kao estimated that her cost to build using the principles of universal design are roughly comparable to the cost to build conventionally, except for about $20,000 for the elevator in the main house and another $20,000 for an optional wheelchair lift in the apartment.
In the spring, Kao expects to start construction on a two-flat in Lincoln Square, with different-sized units priced at about $600,000 and about $900,000. In Edgewater, a mixed-use building will have nine condos priced between $400,000 and $600,000, she said, and the project at 51st and Lawndale in West Elsdon will contain two rental apartments.
The projects all will have the same sign that hangs outside the Hermitage home. It reads “Housing for all people. Regardless.”
A palatial 25,000-square-foot Lincoln Park mansion will hit the market Thursday at a record asking price, $50 million.
Built by Richard and Michaela Parrillo in 2008, the home stands on seven city lots on Burling Street, where it was one of the first mega-mansions built in the Burling-Orchard-Howe district that is now thick with them.
Its ornate stone facade, fountains and lavishly landscaped grounds have made the home familiar to people who frequent the block. The interior, as seen in photos the listing agents provided to Crain’s, is even more stately. There’s a curving staircase with an ornate black and gold wrought iron balustrade, wood-trimmed arched passageways, marble floors and plaster ceiling details. A wine-tasting room has a Louis XIII fireplace; a motor court is lined with imported French gravel.
The couple have $65 million invested in the home, including the costs to buy the land and build the mansion, according to Tim Salm, a Jameson Sotheby’s International Realty agent. Salm is co-listing the home with Matt Leutheuser of the same brokerage.
“There’s really nothing else at this level,” Salm said. “It’s the ultimate city estate.
Richard Parrillo is the chairman and CEO of Florida-based United Automobile Insurance. Salm said that with their daughter grown, the couple is “spending more time in Florida and want another family to have this home.”
The sellers did not immediately respond to a request for comment relayed through Salm. In 2008, Richard Parrillo told Crain’s that construction of the house “got away from me, but it’s a labor of love for my wife.”
Across the street from the Parrillos is a 14,000-square-foot mansion on five city lots that went for $13.3 million in December 2015. Its asking price started out in 2014 at $18.5 million.
Also nearby are the Orchard Street mansion that Penny Pritzker built in 2011, a 26,000-square-footer built on five lots, which were purchased for a total of $9.1 million, for Guggenheim Partners CRO Mark Walter and his wife, Kimbra, and several other multi-lot homes.
The Parrillos’ site is six-tenths of an acre.
While some sellers are reluctant to put their homes on the market in December, typically a slow period in the real estate market, Salm said the Parrillos had been planning to list in January but flipped the switch this week. “At this level of the market, there’s not seasonality,” Salm said. “Anyone who could (afford to) look at it in March can in January.”
The highest-priced home sale on record in the Chicago area is the $25 million transfer of a Winnetka home where members of the Crown family do not appear to have actually sold but to have moved the home from one type of ownership to another. Nevertheless, in 2015 they filed transfer-of-deed paperwork like a conventional sale, with the price listed as $25 million.
After that, the highest sale price is the $19.5 million that Groupon co-founder Eric Lefkofsky paid for a Glencoe estate in 2014.
The highest asking price on record in the Chicago area is $32 million.
That was the asking price on two properties: In 2012, the developers of the Trump International Hotel & Tower were asking $32 million for the building’s 14,000-square-foot top floor. It sold two years ago for $17 million. In 2009, the owners of a 17,000-square-foot mansion on 2 acres in Winnetka were asking the same amount. Now priced at just under $13 million, that property has not sold.
This is getting ridiculous. My headline for last month’s update on the Chicago real estate market was Lowest October Sales In 5 Yearsand now look at this month’s headline. I think it’s pretty clear that home sales jump around quite a bit from month to month and, as I pointed out last month, you have to watch pending home sales as well. Clearly there were some deals waiting in the wings to close and they came through in November.
Yeah, November home sales were up a whopping 16.5% over last year, which was the largest year over year gain in 38 months. But look at the graph below and notice a few things. First, last November was pretty weak. Second, sales aren’t that much higher than they were 3 or even 4 years ago. And, finally, let’s start paying more attention to that blue 12 month rolling average line which has totally lost steam over the last 3 years.
The Illinois Association of Realtors will report these numbers in a couple of weeks but they will put the gain at more like 13.9%.
Chicago Home Contract Activity
Contract activity is basically telling us the same story as the closings – it’s gone flat as shown by another blue line in the graph below and 5 red dots in a row that are pretty close to each other. But if you must know I’m estimating that November contract activity was down by 7.0% from last year, which is the biggest drop in 27 months.
Pending Home Sales
As I mentioned last month we were going into November with a pretty large backlog of pending home sales. Well, we worked that backlog down in November, which explains how we were able to close so many deals while not writing that many new contracts. Now we find ourselves at the end of November with an historically low 2.07 month supply of pending homes vs. a 2.31 month supply last year. So that’s going to be a drag on December closings.
Distressed Home Sales
The decline in distressed home sales as a percentage of the total has been going on for 5 years now with little evidence of stopping, though the numbers are getting really low. The November percentage was 15.5% compared to 18.6% last year.
Chicago Home Inventory
And the inventory level just keeps hitting new lows, which makes it much harder for home buyers to find places and that is certainly a damper on sales. In November condo and townhome inventory dropped to a measly 2.9 month supply, down from last year’s 3.5 month supply, while there was only a 4.2 month supply of single family homes compared to a 5.1 month supply last year. That’s quite a drop from the days of an 18.3 month supply.
Chicago Home Sale Market Times
Interestingly the market time for attached homes and detached homes went in opposite directions in November. Condos and townhomes dropped from 81 days a year ago to 70 days this November, which is fairly significant drop. However, the market time on single family homes actually rose from 80 days to 90 days. That’s fairly odd because the inventories for both types of properties dropped from last year as I just indicated.
Gary Lucido is the President of Lucid Realty, the Chicago area’s full service discount real estate brokerage. If you want to keep up to date on the Chicago real estate market, get an insider’s view of the seamy underbelly of the real estate industry, or you just think he’s the next Kurt Vonnegut you can Subscribe to Getting Real by Email using the form below. Please be sure to verify your email address when you receive the verification notice.
Chicago real estate investor Newcastle has a $68 million deal to buy a full block of Fulton Market District buildings from the estate of Flying Food Group founder Sue Gin, but a lawsuit creates a potential obstacle to the sale.
The planned transaction, another in a series of big real estate deals in the fast-changing neighborhood, is for several mostly smaller brick, loft-style retail and office properties bounded by Washington Boulevard and Randolph, Peoria and Green streets.
Newcastle’s deal follows a wave of other portfolio purchases in the area, long known for meatpackers and food wholesalers but more recently emerging as a destination for creative offices, boutique hotels and retail.
New York-based firms Thor Equities, Madison Capital and the Feil Organization and Chicago-area groups McCaffery Interests, Tucker Development and L3 Capital are among the buyers that have made previous large acquisitions in the area.
The buildings Newcastle is buying are part of a vast real estate operation Gin assembled over several decades before dying in September 2014 at age 73. Earlier this year, Gin’s estate sold an industrial and office complex near Midway International Airport for $50 million.
But the Fulton Market sale comes with a potential legal obstacle, a lawsuit filed by a parking garage operator that rents a property at 850 W. Washington. The complaint was filed June 28 in Cook County Circuit Court by Lots of Chicago, a venture of the Youkana family that runs parking garages under the Park 1 brand.
The parking operator alleges that its lease for the parking garage on Washington includes a right of first refusal on any offer to buy the property. But according to a June 22 letter from Gin’s estate attached to the complaint, the estate informed the Youkanas that there was a $68 million offer to buy the parking garage as part of a group of nearby properties, and that they had a right to match the offer for the entire portfolio.
By not providing a separate price and option to buy just the parking garage, Gin’s estate is in violation of Illinois law by altering the terms of the right of first refusal, according to the complaint.
The Youkanas are seeking at least $100,000 in damages, legal costs and other unspecified relief, according to the complaint. A June 24 letter to Gin’s estate from one of Park 1’s lawyers, Mitchell Marinello of Novack & Macey, said: “As a separate matter, Lots is interested in purchasing all the Offered Properties on the same terms and conditions that have been offered and would like to discuss this with you.”
Gin’s estate was not responding to Park 1’s attempts to discuss the right of first refusal, according to the complaint.
Marinello and Park 1 executive Eddie Youkana did not respond to requests for comment. Flying Food Group CEO David Cotton, the trustee for Gin’s estate, and CBRE Senior Managing Director Marty Stern, who represents the estate in the sale, declined to comment.
The complaint does not name the company that has agreed to buy the portfolio. People familiar with the deal said it’s Newcastle.
Newcastle President and CEO Michael Haney declined to comment. His firm owns another building in the area, as well as retail and apartment properties in Chicago neighborhoods including the Loop, River North, Gold Coast, Bucktown, Wicker Park, Old Town, Lincoln Park and Lakeview.
According to the letter from Gin’s estate, other addresses involved in the sale include 112 N. Green St., 120 N. Green (which also has an address of 833 W. Randolph St.), 119 N. Peoria St., 845 W. Randolph and 131 N. Green (815-823 W. Randolph).
Because most of the buildings are protected from demolition, the parking garage is viewed by many real estate investors and brokers in the area as a key part of the deal, since it could be replaced with a much larger structure. Many leases in the protected buildings are years old, at rents well below today’s rates, meaning there also could be big upside on the buildings’ revenue in future years as existing leases expire.
Among the retail tenants are several restaurants on and along the area’s well-known Randolph Street restaurant row: Nellcote, at 833 W. Randolph St.; Green Street Smoked Meats, at 112 N. Green St., and Parlor Pizza Bar, at 108 N. Green St. Another well-known restaurant, Graham Elliot Bistro, is closed at 841 W. Randolph with plans to reopen as a new restaurant concept.
Also leasing space at 845 W. Randolph is Billy Reid, one of the first clothing brands to come to the neighborhood west of the Kennedy Expressway.
How’s this for irony? Donald Trump made his name and fortune from real estate. You can argue that he will soon be the nation’s first Landlord-in-Chief. But real estate stocks have tumbled since Trump was elected president.
The Real Estate Select Sector SPDR (), an ETF that owns big real estate firms like mall operator Simon ( ) and apartment complex companies Equity Residential ( ) and AvalonBay ( ), has fallen 3% since Trump defeated Hillary Clinton.
So why are real estate investment trusts, or REITs as they are commonly known, struggling?
REITs pay big dividends. And with bond yields surging since the election, partly due to expectations that Trump will need to rack up debt to make his $1 trillion infrastructure spending plans a reality, high yielding stocks like REITs are no longer attractive.
Investors are betting REITs and other big dividend payers will be less attractive in an environment where bond rates are going up. That’s why other big dividend payers, most notably utilities and consumer staples companies, have also lagged the market lately.
But is the market getting this wrong?
Yes, many investors have flocked to REITs solely for their dividends. But the market may be underestimating the possibility that Trump will look to take care of his own, so to speak.
Of course, Trump will need to be extra careful to avoid the appearance of any conflicts of interest. It doesn’t help that his daughter Ivanka is married to real estate developer Jared Kushner. And both are on his transition team.
Trump has already faced criticism about what he plans to do with his massive real estate holdings. Some think Trump should sell his investments outright, but he is planning to place them in a trust to be controlled by his adult children.
These issues aside, REITs should benefit from Trump stimulus.
Karin Ford, senior real estate analyst for MUFG Securities Americas, met with several REIT executives at an industry conference in Phoenix just after the election. In a report to clients, she noted that real estate leaders were upbeat.
“REIT managements believe that a Trump presidency will be positive for fundamentals. They expect commercial real estate to benefit from rising business confidence, lower tax rates, and fiscal stimulus,” Ford wrote.
Ford noted that executives at Camden Property Trus ()were hopeful that Trump’s plans will lead to more job growth, which should lead to higher demand for apartments.
And executives at Alexandria Real Estate (), a REIT that owns research labs used by drug and biotech companies, told Ford that their tenants should thrive under Trump since they believe that “drug pricing restrictions are not high on his agenda.”
Managers at another healthcare REIT, Healthcare Trust of America (), also told Ford they weren’t worried about Trump unwinding the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare.
“We even heard cautious optimism from a few healthcare REITs, the managements of which believe that changes to Obamacare may not be that harmful to their business,” she wrote.
Ford noted that the Healthcare Trust of America executives said “lower-cost, outpatient trends are here to stay and that accelerating economic activity could boost medical office rent growth.”
But what about other potential headwinds for REITs? Won’t inflation hurt the sector? Not necessarily.
Mitch Wasterlain, founder of CAPFUNDR, an investment firm focusing on real estate funds, said in a report after the election that inflation could lead to more pricing power for real estate companies. They’ll be able to demand higher rents.
“Historically, real estate has done well in high interest rate, inflationary environments,” Wasterlain wrote.
But the worst may be over given that REITs have been beaten up so much in the past few months due to fears that stimulus by either Trump or Clinton would drive up interest rates.
The Real Estate Select SPDR ETF has tumbled more than 10% since it was separated from S&P’s financial sector and became its own sector in September.
“With the pullback in REITs, valuations are now attractive, as fundamentals remain solid and balance sheets are as strong as they have ever been,” said William Lynch, director of investments at Hinsdale Associates, in a report.
So real estate may still wind up being a good investment during Trump’s tenure.
Now Trump just needs to figure out what he’ll do with all his real estate holdings to avoid any conflicts of interest.