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Old 03-25-2012, 09:26 AM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
1,033 posts, read 2,496,803 times
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1. How much would I save if I were to get a "fixer-upper" type of condo and then upgrade the place over time? The neighborhoods I'm thinking about are Lakeview, Wicker Park, and Bucktown.

2. My lease doesn't run out until October, but I want to start looking at condos. I know if I get a real estate agent then they will keep calling me and bothering me every day until I buy something. Are there any real estate type people who don't get paid by selling a place? In other words, I just want to look at a lot of different places without being constantly pressured to buy something. Is this possible?
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Old 03-26-2012, 01:01 PM
 
4,066 posts, read 6,862,077 times
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Look on the internet. If you want to really look inside you have to have an agent. Yes many will bug you. You can't really say how much you will save, it depends. There are still short sales and foreclosures to be had. Seems to me now is probably the bottom of the market or close or its a tad on the upswing but that could be just a spring thing.
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Old 03-26-2012, 01:05 PM
 
Location: CHicago, United States
6,934 posts, read 7,864,671 times
Reputation: 3497
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caldus View Post
I know if I get a real estate agent then they will keep calling me and bothering me every day until I buy something.
Agents aren't interested in wasting their time. There's no $$$ in it for them. If you're upfront with the agent and explain what you want and within what timeframe you're working, I doubt it'll be diffcult to find someone good to work with. Agents are accustomed to people looking for a long time. Just don't jerk them around.
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Old 03-26-2012, 01:47 PM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
289 posts, read 828,241 times
Reputation: 181
You could save tens of thousands if by "fixer-upper" you mean "outdated". An older condo with an old kitchen and bathroom would be worth less than a placed with granite/hardwood that was brand new in the last five years.
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Old 03-26-2012, 02:44 PM
 
Location: Chicago
1,950 posts, read 4,645,630 times
Reputation: 919
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caldus View Post
. Are there any real estate type people who don't get paid by selling a place? In other words, I just want to look at a lot of different places without being constantly pressured to buy something. Is this possible?
How would you like them to make a living then? I'm sure you could hire a real estate agent and pay them by the hour for having them take you around and look at places.

The current agent I'm working with has never pressured me nor does he call or email me. I actually wish he called more since I'm already behind schedule.
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Old 03-26-2012, 03:13 PM
 
Location: IL
2,992 posts, read 4,805,473 times
Reputation: 3109
go to an open house and don't leave your phone number or tell them not to call, you will call them.
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Old 03-26-2012, 04:04 PM
 
4,066 posts, read 6,862,077 times
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Also real estate people know that people shop for houses and do not buy the first thing. I worked with my agent for a year before I bought. I did not drag her out to that many places but when I was ready to buy, she was the first one I called.
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Old 03-27-2012, 10:03 AM
 
Location: Chicago
3,319 posts, read 5,357,576 times
Reputation: 4163
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caldus View Post
1. How much would I save if I were to get a "fixer-upper" type of condo and then upgrade the place over time? The neighborhoods I'm thinking about are Lakeview, Wicker Park, and Bucktown.

2. My lease doesn't run out until October, but I want to start looking at condos. I know if I get a real estate agent then they will keep calling me and bothering me every day until I buy something. Are there any real estate type people who don't get paid by selling a place? In other words, I just want to look at a lot of different places without being constantly pressured to buy something. Is this possible?
You will save money if you buy a fixer. How much you'll save depends on how much fixing it needs. Whether it makes sense for you to buy a fixer also depends on how handy you are and if you're able to do any of the work yourself. Updating a kitchen could cost $15,000 if you're doing the work yourself, or it could cost $30,000 to $50,000 if you have to pay others to do the work for you. So, you have to factor that in. A builder/contractor can often do the work for less because they have the skills and the ability to buy supplies at a discounted rate.

My first condo was a fixer and I loved fixing it up. But, I happen to have a father that lives in the area and is extremely handy. We did all of the work, from the electrical and plumbing to drywall and flooring. I liked the process and liked that I could make things exactly how I wanted them. If I didn't enjoy it though, I think buying a fixer would be miserable.

If you want to start looking then just do it and tell the agent you aren't going to buy until your lease is up. I do real estate part time and personally, I wouldn't be nagging someone to go look at things or make an offer unless they were ready to buy and found something awesome. My time has value, and I'm not going to waste it nagging someone. I have many better things to do. I enjoy looking at real estate, but that doesn't mean it's all I want to do. I think most agents are that way. Just tell your agent the truth and I'm sure you won't be harassed.
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