Category Archives: News Opinion

Friday Batch of Links

John Hughes passed away yesterday at the age of 59, leaving behind a wife, kids, grandchildren and more than a few iconic films. Hughes wrote and directed some classic movies of the 1980s and 90s (including The Breakfast Club, Sixteen Candles, Pretty in Pink and Home Alone) and routinely shot in Chicago’s suburbs or in the city itself, most notably in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. He was a talented writer/director and a great man, as these two links illustrate.

Roger Ebert on John Hughes

Heartfelt Tribute to Hughes From His One-Time Pen Pal
Note: This article has a lone curse word in it, and it’s a strong one. But it’s a fantastic and touching piece that really illuminates the kind of man John Hughes was.

Only 10% of Parking Tickets are Contested
But if a parking ticket IS contested, it’s 50% likely to be thrown out!

Gordon Beckham’s hair and relationship status more important than his baseball skills.
The ultra-talented White Sox rookie (and southern gentleman, I might add) is single and looking, ladies!

To get closer to U.S. Cellular Field and the skyline John Hughes helped to immortalize, get in touch with New West Realty today! Eastgate Village has beautiful townhomes and condominiums that can put you in the heart of the greatest city in America. All you have to do is click here to request more information or schedule a showing!

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10 Facts You Should Know About Today’s Illinois Real Estate Market

We found a great PDF over at the Illinois Association of Realtors web site, outlining 10 important facts you should know about the real estate market in Illinois. Without further delay:

Here are ten reasons why buying and owning a home now is a good idea.

1. There is no such thing as a national real estate market. What happens in Las Vegas…well, as far as the housing market there, yes, it tends to be very different than Illinois. Real estate markets are local, so don’t get too concerned about what’s happening outside of where you are selling (and want to buy). Pay attention to local pricing trends, volume movements and changes in inventories, rather than misleading news headlines about national sales trends.

2. Over the long term, Illinois home values are relatively stable. From 2004 to 2007, the median price of an Illinois home increased 10.3%. In the Chicagoland area, the news is even better — the median price rose 13.9%. Owning a home remains a smart investment over the long term, especially for those who keep their home for six to ten years.

3. Your house is your home, not just a place to make a quick buck. While speculators and investors certainly were present during the recent housing boom, most homebuyers don’t buy their home to flip it. Remember that there’s value in the local community, your neighborhood and the piece of mind of owning your own home — things that are hard to measure, but certainly of value. Continue reading

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A Bit of Bright News in The Chicago Home Market

//, reports what seems like positive news about the housing industry.

Taken with a grain of salt, the web site,, reports what seems like positive news about the housing industry.

With all the economic, financial and credit turmoil that seems to be in the news lately, the web site, Happy Real Estate News, discloses actual, reported home sales- and price-related data.

Created and maintain by IMS, a researcher for the real estate industry, the information presented there seems to be a breath of fresh air in what has unfortunately become somewhat dismal situation.

For instance, if you’re a homeowner in Chicago considering a move to Eastgate Village (or even an Eastgate Village resident thinking about selling your home), here’s some encouraging statistics:

According to the last update on the Happy Real Estate News web site (July 17th), the number of homes sold in Chicago rose 3.1%. The timeframe of the data on the site is a bit vague, so we’d assume this is for June or even May of this year.

Other encouraging news is that the average number of days that a home in Chicago is on the market has fallen by 2.9% (according to August 18 data), while the average Chicago home’s value rose 1.4% (reported September 5th).

In any event, the web site seems to report some heartening news. Take it with a grain of salt, however — the site doesn’t cite its source and, of course, there’s no guarantee your circumstance will be the same or even similar.

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Freddie & Fannie: What’s the Bailout Mean?

The recent bailout of two financial giants is most likely good news for consumers.

The recent bailout of two financial giants is most likely good news for consumers.

Unless you’ve been under a financial rock the past week or so, doubtless you know of the federal government’s announcement that it would bail out two of the nation’s largest mortgage holders (by some accounts, they hold 50% of all mortgages in the U.S.), Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.

But what does this mean for buyers? Noted below are some recent comments from real estate, mortgage and economic experts, though the general opinion is that the move will serve to stabilize the credit market and make any future declines in selling prices probably lower than they would have been had the bailout not taken place.

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