Chicago Named the Second-Most Affordable City for Home Buyers

Chicago SkylineThinking about buying a home in the Windy City? Chicago’s housing market may be experiencing a period of slow growth, but it’s also one of the most affordable markets in the nation, according to a recent report published in Crain’s.

This report found that, of the 20 largest cities in the U.S., only St. Louis has a housing market more affordable than Chicago. Furthermore, while other major cities such as New York, Seattle and Philadelphia are expected to see an increase in housing prices over the next few years, the report estimates that Chicago’s market will continue to remain affordable through late 2021.

Rather than comparing cities to one another, this affordability index compared individual cities to their own price histories, taking into account variables such as employment growth, incomes and home prices. Based on this data, the report found that monthly payments on median-priced Chicago homes account for 23 to 24 percent of the median household income. In contrast, during the most recent housing boom, housing costs in Chicago were as high as 35 percent of the median household income.

These unique market conditions have made it a particularly good time to buy a home in Chicago.

Whether you’re buying your first home or shopping for investment properties, the team at First Choice Inspectors can work with you to make sure you’re making an informed decision. We offer a diverse selection of home inspection services, including new home inspections, energy audits, radon inspections and more.

Give us a call or contact us online to schedule your next inspection today!

Don’t Forget a Home Inspection with a New Construction Home

Dan Steward from RIS Media writes about the importance of not forgetting a home inspection after the construction of a new home.  Many homebuyers have the false belief that new homes should be flawless, when that is never the case.  The issues found in new homes are different than the problems with resale homes.  When assessing a resale home, the problems sit with older systems that are nearing the end of their self-life; while the complications with new homes is typically incomplete work, damaged systems, or missing pieces of key materials.  Hiring a home inspection company before closing on a new home can help save homebuyers money due to unexpected home repairs down the road.

New home construction problems fall into four categories:

  1. Incomplete work: Many new home constructions are not completed properly.  “A home inspection company will uncover these issues prior to the move-in date.”
  2. Damaged systems and finishes: New homes often experience damage during construction due to rain, snow, and storage damage.
  3. Missing elements: Oversights during construction due to human error are more common than many realtors and homebuyers think.
  4. Imperfect or sloppy workmanship: While everyone would love perfect workmanship, that is not ideal; any number of things can go wrong during the construction of a new home.

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How to select a Home Inspector

In a column in the Chicago Tribune Ilyce Glink and Samuel Tamkin write about a crucial aspect of home buying, How to select a Home Inspector.

“Question: What is best way to select a home inspector? What criteria should I use to select a good inspector? I want to make sure the house I buy is in excellent condition.”

Searching for a home inspector is like looking for a good lender, ask friends, get referrals, speak with your real estate agent and get some recommendations. Perform a complete interview with an inspector; ask what the process includes, how long it takes, what the expertise is, and what kind of paperwork or information you will be receiving. It is also important to customize your home inspector around the property you have purchased and do not just take his/her credentials as fact, do a little bit of research before making a choice. Avoid getting referred to other specialists by asking your inspector what inspections he does not perform in the home, which will give you a better idea about who to choose. “Any inspector can miss a broken faucet or toilet, but you don’t want your inspector missing a large crack in the foundation of the home, mold in the attic…a roofing system that needs replacement, or a basic structural problem.”

 

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