Are you thinking about buying a house in the Chicago area? As you know, it can be a huge expense. Before you buy, it is smart to consider all of the ways you can save yourself some money! Utilize some of our tips below to lower your costs when buying a house in Chicago!
Buying a house in Chicago will likely be one of the largest purchases you will ever make. You will find yourself spending money on all sorts of things you weren’t expecting. However, as long as you are prepared and make smart decisions throughout the purchase, you will find there are many ways you can keep more money in your pocket. When you are buying a house, every dollar counts!
Skip The Agents
When you eliminate the use of an agent, you are also eliminating the need for either party to pay any agent commissions or fees. Try to find a seller or investment company with whom you can work with one on one. Many sellers who operate this way will appreciate not having to pay any agent commission, which will provide you with extra negotiation power.
Work on Your Credit Score
By raising your credit score, you will likely be able to lower your interest rate. This will save you a lot of money over time. Whether you are buying a home or not, it is important to have a good handle on your credit score. No matter where your credit stands today, it can be fixed. When you have a good credit score, many more doors will open for you. Check with the three reporting bureaus (Experian, Transunion, and Equifax) to obtain a free copy of your report. Check for discrepancies and formulate a plan to clear up your outstanding debts. You might be surprised at how much your credit will rise just by fixing a few small things.
Make A Large Downpayment
Qualifying for a conventional loan will require you put down at least 20% of the sale price. While this might seem like you are actually spending more money, it will ultimately save you in the long run. First of all, it will eliminate the need to pay for mortgage insurance each month as required with an FHA loan. Also, the less you have to borrow, the less interest you will ultimately have to pay. The difference could mean thousands and thousands of dollars that you will be able to keep in your wallet.
Buy A Fixer Upper
Buying a fixer-upper property is an excellent way to lower your costs when buying a house in Chicago. You will have less competition when looking at homes and more negotiation power. Buying a fixer-upper isn’t for everyone. You should be well versed in the construction industry and have a good idea of what the repairs will cost you. Even with the best estimates, be sure to pad your renovation budget for the unexpected.
Consider The Season
Depending on where you live, home prices tend to drop during the winter months. When the kids are in school and the roads are icy, there are fewer buyers looking for homes. You can use this to your advantage by looking at homes in the dead of winter. Of course, if you are in a hot or tropical climate, the opposite may be true. Look for properties in the middle of the summer when everyone else is sitting at home with the AC. Take a look at the trends for properties in your area and make you purchase at the time that makes the most sense financially!