The Judy Orr Team welcomes you to our long-time blog and we’d like to introduce you to some other sites that offer more and are updated.  We no longer post to this blog nor do we have a home search function.  To search homes, local information and utilize robust home searches, please check out the following URL’s:

1.  If you’re looking for real estate in the southwest Chicago suburbs, click the link for our main website.  This offers the best search format and detailed listing data for every listing in the IDX (Internet Data Exchange) system.

2.  Our site for Orland Park real estate zeroes down to this one town, although the site’s home search function allows you to search our entire MLS that covers Northern IL and even crosses borders into neighboring states.

3.  Another more specific website features Oak Lawn real estate.  Although the format has changed over the years, this started our Internet presence. The search on this site is awesome and you’re not limited to Oak Lawn.  Once again, you can search the entire Northern IL MLS and you’ll receive full listing details.

Any of the above sites will allow you to create and save multiple property searches.  You’ll get to see all photos for every listing (we have no control over what listing agents provide) and if there is a virtual tour associated with the property you’ll be able to click on it.

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Categories : General Real Estate
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Welcome to the blog/site for southwest suburban real estate and more.  This easy-to-use site offers a link to a custom MLS search, listings, local information, news and more.  Check out the categories to the right and the pages on the menus above and also to the right.

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Categories : Home, Welcome
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My first website ever was for Oak Lawn homes and real estate.  I started out with a popular real estate website provider and was with them for years.  In fact, I started out as a free member and quickly made it to the #1 position in Google and other search engines.  I held that top spot for many years.  Unfortunately, there has been a recent change in Google, and my site has fallen drastically.

Oak Lawn real estate website screenshot

The 2nd website provider is a very respected company but that site became too old fashioned and it would have cost quite a bit of money to bring it up to par.  In fact, part of the reason I believe my site has fallen in Google is because at the time I no longer had a home search, or IDX search, on the site.  My new website has a very good IDX search that shows all of the photos a listing agent has submitted (you’ll want to hit the “expand gallery” button that will appear when you hover over the photo box) and a lot of data, including room sizes.  I can’t get this much data on my much more expensive website.  If there’s a virtual tour you’ll get the link.

You’ll also get to see price history if there have been any changes and most listings will have a Zillow Zestimate and rent Zestimate, plus a Walkscore rating.  There will be both a Satellite and a Bird’s-eye view on each listing page.  You’ll also see similar listings followed by school districts and nearby schools with ratings.  You can schedule a showing right from the individual listing or you can fill-out a contact form with specific questions, although these listings provide all the data you’d need.

Be sure to read the blog posts as they can be very informative.  Oak Lawn is the southwest suburb that always has the most sales year after year, but this website also has community pages for the surrounding towns of Alsip, Bridgeview, Burbank, Chicago Ridge, Evergreen Park, Hickory Hills, Hometown,  Justice and Worth.  You’ll get instant data for each of these villages, including a list of properties for sale, although you’d probably want to create a more custom search for your price range, number of bedrooms and baths, etc.

I’m very happy with my new website and I try to provide buyers and sellers with all the information I feel they would want and need to move forward with their real estate needs in Oak Lawn and the surrounding towns.

This website is provided to you by your Oak Lawn REALTORS, The Judy Orr Team.  You can reach us at 708-536-8200.

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Mortgage loans have got quite a few aspects involved and amongst them all there’s the concern of getting approval as well. In this process of mortgage approval, one of the most important roles happens to be played by a person who you’ll never really meet. This person is an underwriter. You should know that no lender would fund or close a loan without the prior approval of a mortgage underwriter. This obviously proves how things wouldn’t really move without a mortgage underwriter also known as a mortgage undertaker. As for the specific function the mortgage underwriter serves, then sometimes he or she’s required to run a check over the figures involved, ensure that all paperwork is in order and then give the necessary approval. If not this, then the underwriter is definitely required to look over all the paperwork and then come to a decision. This of course would be based on his or her experience as well as good judgment.

The various requirements for mortgage loan approval

Remember, mortgage loan approval happens to be one of those things that’s known  to rest on several things. These include your income, credit history, savings, debt ratio and so many others. Essentially the buyer should be able to prove that he or she can actually afford the payments for the mortgage approval concerned. The buyer needs to have a good enough credit history as well that shows a complete record of the repaying obligations being taken care of and fiscal responsibility fulfilled. He or she should also have a verifiable and stable job history. Most importantly, the buyer should be able to show that the money used for down payment is completely his or her own and not borrowed from anyone else.

The importance and role of the mortgage underwriter

Now the role of the mortgage underwriter essentially includes his or her ensuring all these factors actually meet certain guidelines, rather specific loan guidelines. Underwriters ensure that the title, insurance, tax as well as closing documentation are all in place. They’re also known to review appraisals to ensure they’re absolutely accurate and thorough. This is essential for it proves that the home in concern is actually worth the purchase price at least. You  can say that the mortgage underwriter has got final approval as well as final responsibility of the loan. As for the denial coming from the underwriter, then quite often it can be appealed to the head underwriter or  any other superior for the approval all over again. However, for this facts must be in place to support. This is obviously necessary for the overturn of any underwriter’s decision.

There’s also the scope of automated underwriting

It’s also a fact that now automated underwriting is very much in place. In other words, these are automated systems in place. These systems are designed with computer programs into which data is fed. This is handy when it comes to assessing the risks as it’s done with the aid of a formula. It then gives an approval or maybe a denial. Moreover, this system requires rather strict adherence to the guidelines and is generally not known to entertain any deviations or gray areas for that matter.

The commonly prevalent manual underwriting

There are of course quite a few instances wherein manual underwriting is absolutely indispensable. In fact the manually underwritten Federal Housing Administration (FHA) files are pretty common. This is obvious for the FHA actually makes allowances for no credit history and even troubled credit buyers. Plus this enables more flexible debt rules.

From the above discussion it’s clear that an underwriter has a lot on his mind and is required to take calculated risks when it comes to determining how far a file caters to specific loan program guidelines and more.

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Categories : Home Buying
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In many a cases, homeowners walk away from the home loan in case of low affordability and if the house is underwater. So, yes, it is possible to walk away from the home, in case it is underwater and you cannot afford to make the payments on the home loan. The consequences of walking away from your home loan differs from one state to the other. So, if you are underwater and if you want to avoid the payments on the same, you will have to be aware of the type of state you are in. On the basis of the home loan, you can be either in a recourse state or a non-recourse state.

Results of walking away from home loan

If you walk away from your home, some of the most serious consequences which you may have to face are:

1.  You will have ruined credit – If you walk away from your home loan, it is going to have a hugely negative effect on your credit. This is because, when you walk away the lender definitely is going to foreclose your home. Foreclosure lowers your credit by 200-300 points. It is going to take time for you to recover your credit. So, before you do walk off, you will have to keep this important factor in mind.

2.  You will have problems in obtaining a mortgage – As you walk off and as the lender forecloses your home, your credit score lowers. This has an overall negative effect on your credit. So, it is obvious that it is going to be tough for you to obtain a mortgage soon. This means, it may not be possible for you to buy a new home, soon after you walk off from your last home. Therefore, you will have no other option but to wait for a few years, and live on rent.

3.  You may be served with a deficiency judgment – Depending on the state you are in, you may be served with a deficiency judgment. This again will depend on the type of state you are in. If you are in a non-recourse state, you can hand over the keys to your lender, and simply walk off. In such a state, the lender can have either the house or what you owe on the mortgage. On the other hand, if you are in a recourse state, you will be sued. In such states, the lenders can not only foreclose. They can also sue you, if the value of the home is far less than what was borrowed.

4.  The foreclosure gets listed – As the lender forecloses your home, it gets listed on your credit report. This listing will stay on the credit reports for seven years. The effect of this is same as that of its effect on the credit score. When you will be applying for new credit, the creditor or the lender will pull your credit report. If they see such a negative listing on your credit report, they certainly will not take it lightly.

So, the above are the effects of walking away from your home, without paying down the mortgage. In order to buy a new home, you will have to work hard and improve your credit. This is going to take time, and you need to have enough patience for the same. You will not only be required to go on making the on-time payments on the existent debts, but you will also have to try and do away with the negative listings. If possible, you will have to find out whether or not you can dispute with the same. This can help a lot with the improvement of your credit.

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Categories : General Real Estate
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I started the site for Homer Glen homes for sale a couple of months ago with a new website provider and wasn’t happy with them.  Switched to a different provider but then switched up another site to that provider instead.  Checked out the original site provider, who seemed to have improved their offerings, and am back.  Unfortunately, all of my prior work had to be cut and pasted into the new (again) format.  There is still a slight glitch I’m working on with them but nothing serious and hopefully it will be fixed soon.

Homer Glen homes for sale screenshot

Check out the Homer Glen real estate and lifestyle website and see how fun it is to use. The home page has a little bit of everything you’d need if you were interested in this popular village.  There’s a bunch of pages for buyers and sellers with really helpful information.  There are some featured Homer Glen homes for sale with large photos.  To the right is a Quick Search box and underneath is a list of pre-done home searches by price, followed by the most recent blog posts.  The footer has contact information, social media links and real client testimonials.

The site isn’t just for real estate.  There are Homer Glen lifestyle posts in the blog that will help residents and anyone thinking of moving to Homer Glen, IL.

If you’re interested in Homer Glen real estate this is the site you want to be on.  The advanced search is great and the results are better than a site I checked out costing thousands.  You get so much detail on each listing that all that’s next is setting an appointment to see the house if it’s something you’re interested in.  You’ll get all the interior details such as rooms and their sizes.  Each listing tells you everything you’d want to know if you’re interested in buying and/or selling Homer Glen real estate.

There are pre-made searches already created and the ability for buyers to sign-up for automated searches that will be sent directly to their e-mail – no missing your dream Homer Glen home.  For sellers, they can get a free home evaluation by filling out a short form.

You can spend hours on this website and come back for more – it’s that good with everything you need if you’re interested in Homer Glen real estate and/or lifestyle.

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Orland Park homes and real estate website

When I created my very first real estate website it was just for Oak Lawn and the surrounding suburbs because that’s where I lived and where my brokerage was located at the time.  I started networking with other real estate webmasters and was told I should branch out and try for a bigger piece of the pie, so I then started a broader ranging website covering Chicago suburbs.  Some webmasters told me I should go for Chicago but I don’t work in the big city all that much.  But I did expand and that website is where I get most of my site visitors.

It’s Back to Hyper-Local

With the emergence of large real estate portals that we are in competition with, I have decided to go a bit more local.  Although I’ve always sold Orland Park homes, even when I was based in Oak Lawn, we moved to the Orland Park/Homer Glen area about 4 years ago. Prior to our personal move I also switched to a new brokerage based in Orland Park. Because of these two moves, I created a website years back just for Orland Park real estate.  However, the hyper-local movement wasn’t that popular and I took the site down.

I wish I didn’t!  I have once again created a website just for Orland Park Homes, Lifestyle and Real Estate.  It offers so much that if you’re interested in this popular village you can spend hours on the site doing searches, checking out the searches already done for you, learning how to use the Property Organizer, reading the blog, etc.  It isn’t just about real estate as there will be posts on Orland Park news, happenings and area restaurant reviews.

We hope you find it easy-to-use without all of the superfluous stuff most websites have.  We’d love for our readers to participate with photos, blog posts and comments. Check it out and start searching for Orland Park real estate.

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April Favorites 2013

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There were a lot of posts for April about real estate in the southwest suburbs.  Following are some of my favorites for the month:

Homer Glen Homes

Energy rebate available for Homer Glen homesDid you know that owners of Homer Glen homes can apply for an energy rebate up to $1,750?  Check it out to see if you could save some cash with a rebate plus making your home more energy efficient.

Here is a great blog post that tells you how to search for Homer Glen homes for sale.  There are multiple ways to search on this website created just for Homer Glen, IL.

Finally, there are two easy ways to see all of the newest homes in Homer Glen listings.  You’ll see about a week’s worth of new listings in the popular village without having to do a search.  This search will update itself automatically, so you’ll want to bookmark it to see what’s new.

Orland Park Homes

We’ve been busy with our new Orland Park real estate website.  To start it off, here is a snapshot of Orland Park real estate statistics for 2012.

When you’re searching for homes in Orland Park, the Property Organizer will help you separate and organize different searches you’ve created, making it easy for you to keep track of your multiple searches.

There is a fun new search called the Orland Park Lifestyle search and there’s a couple ways to access it.  Find out where different things are located, which might help you decide where you’d prefer to live in the village.  This map search is more interactive than other online maps.  Give it a try!

I love posting real estate statistics for my main service areas.  These hyper-local stats don’t always match what you read online, in the news or magazines or see on TV.  Check out some true and recent statistical comparisons of Orland Park homes and time on market.

April was a wet month and gave us two meanings for Orland Park homes underwater.  An accompanying post is all about Orland Park short sales.  Each of these articlesOrland Park short sales sign explains short sales and gives a link to see all short sale homes in Orland Park.  The list updates itself so is another search to bookmark and come back to so you can keep up-to-date on short sale homes currently available.  Most offer good value but you need to be very patient if you want to make an offer on one.

Northern Virginia and Washington D.C. has a hot real estate market and a local agent created a funny rap video about it. How does that compare to Orland Park real estate?

Oak Lawn Real Estate

I grew up in Oak Lawn starting at the age of 10.  I show and sell a lot of Oak Lawn homes, but it was fun selling a home in my old neighborhood.  In fact, it was the exact same style as the home I lived in and it was interesting to see how accurate my memory was.



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I’m going to start putting links to my favorite blog posts from the prior month.    I have multiple blogs and would like to share some of them.

Homer Glen Real Estate and News

There’s a new website for Homer Glen real estate and lifestyle and here are some of the posts for March:

Orland Park Real Estate and News

  • See how Orland Park real estate compared in the amount of single family homes sold  in 2012 to the other top 5 southwest suburbs – click here.

Oak Lawn Real Estate Success Story

  • There have been some successful posts of Oak Lawn homes sold and closed.  Click the link for one of them.

General Real Estate News

  • There was quite an online outrage about the real estate agent sued over his IDX feed. 
  • One of my favorite blogs was about debunking the 20/20 expose on real estate tricks of the trade.  You just can’t believe everything you see or read, and these supposed exposes always put a spin on things that aren’t necessarily reality. As far as real estate articles, many things real estate related are different from one location to another – so general nationwide information doesn’t always apply to every state, town or local real estate board.


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October 2016
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