Chicago's North Shore - North and Northwest Suburbs Real Estate

Chicago North Shore, North and Northwest Suburban Real Estate Blog

Allyson Hoffman


Displaying blog entries 1041-1050 of 1073

Happy Thanksgiving - Chicago McDonald’s ® Thanksgiving Parade

by Allyson Hoffman


Come join in the Thanksgiving festivities as presented by the Chicago Festivals Association (CFA). The CFA is proud to present the  McDonald’s ® Thanksgiving Parade. A fun filled morning with fabulous floats, marching bands and talented equestrian units, unique performance groups and local and national celebrities.

The parade will travel north on State Street from Congress to Randolph. Click here for a detailed route map.

Thursday, November 22, 2007—Thanksgiving Day

8:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.

State Street—from Congress to Randolph
Click the link below for Google map directions.

For more information about the  McDonald’s ® Thanksgiving Parade, visit the Chicago Festivals Assocations website.

Wishing you and your families a safe and Happy Thanksgiving.

Image courtesy of morano.vincent/


Selling Your Home In Chicago? - Real Estate Appraisals and Market Analysis

by Allyson Hoffman

Setting the right price is an important first step in the process of selling a home. Is it necessary to spend $200 to $400 for a professional appraisal of your property before placing your home on the market?

A professional appraiser's opinion of a property's market value is based on the recent sales of similar homes in the neighborhood, and on the square footage and condition of the property. Different appraisers might come up with different figures. Even if all of them agreed on a value, there is no guarantee that you would receive that amount for your property.

An alternative to a professional appraisal is to ask a professional real estate agent for a written market analysis of your property. This analysis will include information about recent home sales in your neighborhood, as well as how those homes compare to yours. Real estate agents may provide this service with no charge or obligation. If you are still unsure of the value of your home, you may wish to pay for an appraisal.

To get started with a FREE, no obligation computerized analysis of your home's value, click on the link below and have the report emailed directly to your inbox.

Image courtesy of Bernt Rostad/


Chicago Illinois North Shore Suburbs

by Allyson Hoffman

Strategically located within easy reach of the city of Chicago by trains and highways, Chicago's North Shore suburbs are culturally inspiring, diverse in housing and rich in community services and activities. From the lakefront to the Botanic Gardens, the Ravinia Music Festival Park to the Skokie Lagoons and dense forest preserves, area dwellers are fortunate to combine the appeal of suburban comforts with the benefits of convenient access to a major city. 

 To learn more about Chicago's North Shore Communities and what they have to offer, follow the links below.

Deerfield Lincolnwood
Evanston Mettawa
Glencoe Morton Grove
Glenview Northbrook
Highland Park Riverwoods
Highwood Skokie
Lake Bluff Wilmette
Lake Forest Winnetka



If you have any questions or for more information regarding your buying or selling needs, please do not hesitate to contact me

Image courtesy of ElsieNessie/

Buying or Selling Real Estate in Chicago Illinois - A Must Have Read

by Allyson Hoffman

 If you are thinking of buying or selling a home in the Chicago Illinois area, you won't want to miss these two highly acclaimed, Chicago Illinois specific, real estate books that I was a co-author of.

As a home seller in Chicago Illinois, the book, Get the Best Deal When Selling Your Home will guide you through the home selling process and cover topics such as:

   Selling Your Home: The Basics

   Buying Your Next Home

For more information about the authors and a detailed listing of the Table of Contents visit Buying in Illinois or Selling in Chicago?.



How to Make Your Realtor®  Get You the Best Deal will guide you through the purchasing process and describe the following topics:

   History of the home buying process

                 A new law for the people

                How to select your Realtor®

          Negotiating the best deal


For more information about the authors and a detailed listing of the Table of Contents visit Buying in Illinois or Selling in Chicago?.

Please do not hesitate to contact me should you require additional information regarding either of these books. I would be happy to discuss the contents of these books with you in more detail.

Halloween in Highland Park - October 25, 2007

by Allyson Hoffman


 Halloween is coming early in Highland Park. Renaissance Place and Port Clinton Square are hosts to a Halloween event for the whole family on Thursday, October 25th  from 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm. Halloween Fun ‘Round The Block will include:


  • Pony Rides on The Plaza


  • Children’s Train Rides on 2nd Street


  • Pumpkins and Decorating on 2nd Street


  • Hay Rides ‘Round The Block


  • Carmel Apple Dipping on 1st Street


  • Trick or Treating in the Stores


Do not miss the Rag Time Banjo Band and you’ll have to check out the Costume Stroll.


Admission is FREE and indoor parking for 3 hours is also FREE.


Visit Port Clinton Square website for directions and more parking information.

Image courtesy of Windell Oskay/





Do Not Call Registry - Will You Still Be Listed In 2008?

by Allyson Hoffman


Most of us are, or have been, extremely frustrated at some point with unwanted calls made by telemarketers. One way to help prevent telemarketers from calling was the creation of the Do Not Call Registry back in 2003. Individuals can register their phone numbers with the registry in hopes to eliminate these unsolicited calls to our homes and businesses.


There were a staggering number of registrants within the first four days of the lists launch date and continued to grow to 149 million phone numbers currently.


The important thing to remember is there is a term to your registration. Your registration with the Do Not Call Registry is only good for five years at which time your phone number will be removed from the list unless you renew by your renewal date. As the five year anniversary of the list is coming up in the summer of 2008, you early registrants will have to think about renewing. You can check the status of your registration by visiting the website.


Read the full MSN Money Central article titled Do Not Call list about to expire.


Image courtesy of niekverlaan/Pixabay

5 Things Your Cell Phone Can Do!

by Allyson Hoffman

It is just amazing how technology works. Here are 5 things you never knew your cell phone could do:

1. Emergency - The emergency number worldwide for mobile phone is 112. If you find yourself out of the coverage area of your mobile network and there is an emergency, dial 112 and the mobile will search any existing network to establish the emergency number for you, and interestingly this number, 112 can be dialed even if the keypad is locked.

2. Hidden Battery Power - Imagine your cell battery is very low. To activate, press the keys *3370# Your cell will restart with a reserve and the instrument will show a 50% increase in battery. This, reserve will get charges when you charge your cell the next time.

3. Have You Locked Your Keys In The Car? Does your car have the remote keyless entry? If you lock your keys in the car and the spare keys are at home, call someone at home on their cell phone from your cell phone. Hold your cell phone about a foot from your car door and have the person at home press the unlock button, holding it near the mobile phone on their end. Your car will unlock. Distance is no object. You could be hundreds of miles away, and if you can reach someone who has the other "remote" for your car, you can unlock doors or the trunk.

4. How To Disable A Stolen Mobile Phone - To check your mobile phone's serial number, key in the following digits on your phone - *#06# A 15 digit code will appear on the screen. This number is unique to your handset. If your phone gets stolen, you can call your handset provider and give them this code. They will then be able to block your handset so even if the thief changes the SIM card, your phone will be totally useless. If everyone does this, there would be no point in people stealing mobile phones.

5. Free Directory Service For Cell Phones - Cell phone companies are charging us $1.00 or more for 411 information calls when they don't have to. When you need to use 411 information, simply dial: 800-FREE411 or 800-373-3411 without incurring any charge at all.

Image courtesy of Highways Agency/

Whether we like it or not, we have come to rely on our electronic toys, gadgets and appliances as a part of our daily routine, but have you considered what to do with all the old, broken or replaced items that are taking up shelf space in your basement or garage?


The City of Highland Park has joined forces with Lake County’s Solid Waste Agency to offer residents an Electronics Recycling Program. There is only one Electronics Collection Event remaining in Highland Park this year.


                        Date:                October 20th, 2007

                        Time:               10:00 am to 12:00 pm

                        Location:         Fire Arms Training Center

                                                1180 Half Day Road


This Electronics Collection Event will be accepting household electronics only. Visit The City of Highland Park for a detailed list of accepted items.


Image courtesy of JMacPherson/


Home inspections are a necessary part of both the home selling and buying process. It is important to be sure that when hiring a home inspector that you are sure to hire a qualified individual or company. Below is a list of things to keep in mind to ask your potential inspector.


  1. What are your qualifications? 
  2. How many home inspections do you perform in a year that is similar to my home? 
  3. Can you provide a list of references that we can contact? 
  4. What is your turnaround time to receive the report? 
  5. What will be included in the report? 
  6. How much will the report cost?  

For an easy, quick search of certified Home Inspectors in your area you can visit The American Society of Home Inspectors or the National Association of Certified Home Inspectors.


Your Home Inspector will perform a “visual” inspection to determine the condition of your home. To better understand what may be included in your report and what your Home Inspector will be looking for see the list below.


  • Foundation and Framing
  • Roofing and Flashing
  • Gutters and Drainage
  • Siding
  • Decks and/or Porches
  • Driveways and Sidewalks
  • Doors and Windows
  • Stairs and Railings
  • Ceilings and Walls
  • Electrical
  • Plumbing
  • Heating and A/C
  • Ventilation
  • Attics
  • Basement
  • Garage

Photo courtesy of

How to Prepare for Your Mortgage Lender

by Allyson Hoffman

Meeting with a mortgage lender can be a little nerve wracking for all of us, but what better way to conquer those nerves than to be prepared. Your lender will require a variety of documentation from you in order to process your home loan application.

  • Employment information.
    Include current contact information for all your employers in the last 2 years
  • W-2s.
    These forms should have been given to you from your employer.
    Include W-2s the last two years filed
    You may also want to make a list of any additional sources of income such as self-employment income, pension’s, rental income, child support or alimony or social security.
  • Pay stubs.
    Include pay stubs received in the last 30 days.
  • Federal income tax returns.
    Include tax returns filed in the last 2 years
  • Bank statements.
    Bank statements for any/all your accounts for the last 2 months
    Providing these statements will verify that amount of cash available for your down payment
    In the event that a portion of your down payment is a gift, grant or assistance program, you may need to provide documentation to verify this as well
  • Current debts.
    Make a list of any/all debts you have with company names, account numbers, balances and minimum monthly payments

Your lender may have already given you a list of items required and if not use this as a guideline. Most institutions will require similar documentation, but check with your lender first as they made need additional information from you.


Image courtesy of David Wall/

Displaying blog entries 1041-1050 of 1073




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Photo of Allyson Hoffman Real Estate
Allyson Hoffman
RE/MAX Villager
1245 Waukegan Road
Glenview IL 60025
Fax: 847-400-0881

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Allyson Hoffman
RE/MAX Villager
1245 Waukegan Road
Glenview, IL, 60025

(847) 310-5300
[email protected]

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