Guest author Randy Weinstein has been a licensed attorney focused on real estate since 2006. Randy has been recognized by Superlawyers magazine as a rising star for the past two years.

Randy Weinstein graduated from the University of Denver with a juris doctorate and a masters of science in real estate and construction management. 
Contact Randy at his website http://weinsteinlegal.com or by email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

Homeowners in Chicago who are looking to purchase a new home and rent out their current home must take proper precautions to be cash flow positive.

Changing Your Mindset - Becoming a Business Owner

The first thing that people must understand when they go from living in their home to renting out their home is that they are going from home-owners to business-owners.  By turning your home into your business, you must take the same precautions that you would take in starting any other business.  People should be prepared to consider:

  1. Properly forming an Illinois Limited Liability Company (LLC) 
  2. Executing a Quit Claim Deed from themselves personally into an Illinois Limited Liability Company
  3. Hiring a real estate broker to obtain qualified tenants 
  4. Engaging a real estate attorney to review and/or draft your lease
  5. Consider a property management company to handle repair issues and rent collection. 


Steps 3-5 are particularly important for properties located in the City of Chicago and Evanston. This is because these municipalities have strict Residential Landlord Tenant Ordinances (RLTO) to protect tenants.


Many consumers are missing out on genuine opportunities, as they aren't aware of the benefits of these 2 lesser-discussed mortgage products: Reverse Mortgages and FHA 203K Loans.

While these mortgage types may have had somewhat of a bad rap, they actually can be highly beneficial for a variety of clients with different backgrounds, when taken on with a bit of knowledge and care.  Here is what you should consider.

Reverse Mortgages

Reverse mortgages are beneficial typically to homeowners who have substantial equity in the home and are without other primary sources of income.  Aging homeowners typically find this type of mortgage suitable to their situation.  Here are some of the reasons why you may want to look into a reverse mortgage:
  • Seniors over the age of 62 have the ability to use a reverse mortgage to access the equity of their current residence AND to purchase a new home (in most US states)
  • Older adults, particularly in their 80s and 90s, are taking advantage of the market and are liquidating their primary residence in order to seek out senior living communities, making a reverse mortgage a great option for these homeowners

The International Consumer Electric Show (CES) generated a lot of buzz this year due to one new specific category: home automation, and one specific product line: smart light bulbs.  These fancy bulbs respond to your smartphone while you're away on vacation, sense your presence as you walk in the door, can let you know if you're getting a phone call... oh, and can have an energy life of over 20 years. 

Smart bulbs can, obviously, be great for a homeowner, but real estate agents are intrigued about these developments themselves.  No need to worry about showing up to a home early to turn all the lights on for an inviting entrance.  Also, set the mood with the lightbulbs individually, with a spotlight here and there or a warm ambiance there.

So, what are some specs of smart light bulbs?  

Here are the tasks they can do so far:

  • Connect to your Wi-Fi/Respond to your smartphone or tablet apps - and have control of them from remote locations
  • Have mood settings like "concentrate," "read," or "relax"
  • Displays a range of different colors to respond to mood and setting
  • Can be set to dim automatically as you fall asleep
  • Can sense your presence from up to 50ft away and respond to you
  • Flash to alert you to an incoming phone call
  • Sustain energy for 20 years

Moving With Children: Tips for Relocating With Kids (Image Source: Pixabay Creative Commons)

You're planning out your move into a new home, and you're feeling great about the progress you've made: The movers are lined up, the rooms are slowly being packed, you've made a few trips to Goodwill as you sort through "keepers" and "donaters," and there's even a color-coded system in place to ensure that the rooms in your new place will have the correct boxes. But, if you're moving with children in tow, it's also important to have a few plans in place for them to smooth the transition.

Here are some tips for taking care of your kids while taking care of your move.

Talk With Your Children About the Move

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