Saturday, October 25, 2014

How To Save Money When Applying For A Mortgage!

When in the process of buying a home many people become frustrated because banks change their closing cost.. However, some of these cost are hidden fees that brokers try to pass off as “necessary” to close the loan. When in fact, there are so many fees that don’t need to be paid by borrowers with good credit and stable income.
Here are list of some of the negotiable fees in a closing statement:



  • Discount Points: This is basically pre-paid interest, and it DOES help the borrower, because it pays down the interest rate. Basically, it’s pre-paid interest. However, you aren’t required to pay discount points. It’s just an option that you have as a borrower. However, the lender wins if you don’t stay in the home long enough to break even on the pre-paid interest. Typically, if you aren’t planning on staying in the home for five years or longer, don’t pay discount points.
  • Origination Fees: This is another form of pre-paid interest that ONLY benefits the mortgage broker. You will see this fee if you use a broker using a processor. They’ll try to get you to fatten the profit they make on the loan by paying this fee. This fee is definitely negotiable, and there are many brokers that will do a loan 0 origination fees. However, if you are a high risk borrower with bad credit and undocumented income, you may need to pay this fee. The broker/processor will need to do much more work to get your loan approved.
  • Admin/Underwriting Fees: If you’re going through a broker, you shouldn’t need to pay this fee, because the broker isn’t doing any underwriting on your loan. The lender offering the loan is doing the underwriting. So, if you get a loan through a bank that underwrites your own loans, this fee might be warranted.
  • Application Fee: I just think this is ticky-tack. Brokers and banks get credit reports for next to nothing, because they are ordering these things every day. Charging you $50 for an application fee is just another way to increase their bottom line.
  • Appraisal Fee: This fee is necessary, but make sure it’s not an exorbitant amount. The fee should range from $200 to $400 for the broker/bank associate to order an appraisal on the house. Also, you are entitled to a copy of the appraisal, because YOU purchased it.
Fees That Are Non-Negotiable:
  • Title Fees: There are title fees associated with every loan that is closed, whether it’s an attorney or a title company. But, you can shop around for title companies to see who has the cheapest fees. Generally, they don’t differ too much.
  • Doc Stamps/Courier Fees: These are fees that everyone pays to close a home.
  • Tax-related service fees
  • Title Insurance
  • Recording Fees
It’s very easy to get ripped off by lenders and brokers. They think that you know nothing about closing real estate, so they’ll try to throw in extra fees here and there to increase the profit they make on the loan. Be a responsible consumer and scrutinize the good faith estimate as much as possible. 
I am proud to have a partner Mortgage Broker (Victoria's Bankers) who charge the client no origination fees or cost to produce the loan. Instead the bank pays them a fee. The buyer will still have the fees such as insurance, recording fees, stamps, but imagine not having to fight your loan officer a few days before closing to reduce their origination fee from $2000 to $500 or less. Using a loan officer that works with a bank allows them to charge you twice, in addition they always use their bank as they can't shop around through multiple banks for the best deal. 
Ultimately, a buyer should know upfront what cost is negotiable and what is not. In addition a buyer has the right to be told by the loan officer of the closing cost in advance. What I really like bout Victoria's Bankers is that they let the client know the situation on the first meeting. No surprises. As a real estate agent the vendors that I recommend have an impact on how I conduct my business in that I want my clients to know I am here to protect them. We receive referrals and the way to do that is to treat people respectfully and with the same disposition we would want to be treated. My goal is to be your REALTOR® for life. People are smart and if you can pass one over on them today they will find out tomorrow and you will never see repeat business. Protect and guide your clients! 

Ben Rivera, Real Estate Broker, ADPR®, CDAT®, CDPE®
Charles Rutenberg Realty (Named the 1 of the Top 100 Places To Work For In Chicago 2013)
312.857.3104


Call Victoria's Bankers 773.492.1531 for a free loan consultation


Friday, October 24, 2014

Most Important Home Features For Homebuyers



Home Features Preferences Survey

Every year I receive this report from an organization that I have the privilege of being a part of (NAR). NAR conducts a very useful survey for us agents to learn what is important to buyers and sellers. These surveys give us valuable feedback from the actual source itself, our clients the buyers and sellers. 

The report is very detailed and contains numerous pages. So I took a few points I would like to highlight and elaborate on. 

According to the latest Home Feature Preferences survey, central air conditioning was the most important feature to the most homebuyers (65%), which was followed by a walk-in closet in the master bedroom (39%).

The National Association of REALTORS® survey — based on 2,005 qualified household responses — evaluated 33 different home features that buyers prefer most when purchasing a home.

Gender played an interesting role in the survey: Single men placed a higher preference on finished basements while single women placed a higher importance on single-level homes. And both single men and married couples placed a higher preference on new kitchen appliances.

Although 97% of buyers said they were satisfied with their home purchase, there were two things buyers consistently said they would like to have more of: storage space and closets.

The way a homebuyer should use this info is to realize what features are important to them. Use this information as a frame of reference and realize that even people who are satisfied with their purchase would have liked more space and closets. Something to pay attention to when on showings.

If you'd like to learn more about purchasing a home or about how to purchase a home with less than $1000 down give our team a call. 312.857.3104


Ben Rivera, Real Estate Broker, ADPR®, CDAT®, CDPE®
Charles Rutenberg Realty (Named the 1 of the Top 100 Places To Work For In Chicago 2013)
312.857.3104



Thursday, October 23, 2014

Logan Square Bar & Grill

Description of Logan Square: 

A square located at the center of the neighborhood is dedicated to John A. Logan, a Civil War general and politician who is credited with popularizing Memorial Day. In the midst of Logan Square is a really nice place called Logan Bar & Grill. 

We recently tried this place out with a few friends and we were very surprised. First off the decor is very warm and cozy. The food is much better than you would expect from a bar. We tried a few specialty beers that were recommended by the waitress and were very happy with her recommendation. Speaking of the waitress, the service was very prompt and fast for such a busy night. All in all this is a great place and we will definitely be coming back. 


Located 20-30 steps away from the Blue Line Stop on California.



Check out their site here. Logan Square Bar & Grill


Ben Rivera, Real Estate Broker, ADPR®, CDAT®, CDPE®
Charles Rutenberg Realty (Named the 1 of the Top 100 Places To Work For In Chicago 2013)
312.857.3104

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Our New Partnership With www.PreviewChicago.com

In real estate there are many areas that a company as big as ours must focus on. Usually most agents are Jacks of many trades and masters of none. We take a different approach and we partner with companies that take a similar approach. Our approach is to build a team that consist of experts in each fashion of the transaction to facilitate superior customer service and to achieve our motto," Our Goal Is To Exceed Your Expectations."

Marketing is a important part of our business. You see the real key to selling a home is to market it so that the buyers that are out there find this property at some point in there search. With so many alternatives for buyers to search for online it's a must to have multiple channels of marketing being utilized.

So with much anticipation we are excited to announce a new partnership for a truly great site out there that markets very well. Our partnership with the aforementioned site will be a great benefit for our sellers as well as our buyers.

We are very proud to partner with Preview Chicago and would love for you to check them out when you get a chance.




Ben Rivera
Real Estate Broker  CDPE®, ADPR®, CDAT®
Phone: 312.857.3104
(Ranked #1 of the Top 100 Companies to Work For by The Chicago Tribune)
(In 2012 We Helped Over 200 Families Avoid Foreclosure
  In 2013 We Helped Over 300 Families Avoid Foreclosure)


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