Four Common Misconceptions About Real Estate Transactions: Part Two—Appraisals vs. Inspections


Appraisals and inspections are often confused with each other, and for good reason. They seem similar. A professional walks through the home, examining similar features and asking similar questions. They’re both examining the condition of the home. But they’re actually very different processes, and understanding the difference can help you as a buyer, a seller and a homeowner.

Let’s start with the similarities.

  • Both appraisals and inspections involve a licensed, certified expert evaluating the condition of your home.
  • Both are common practices with most real estate transactions.
  • Both can significantly impact the home-buying process with their findings.
  • Both review similar features in the home, including the condition of the roof, appliances and flooring.

Understanding the differences between appraisals and inspections can help homeowners benefit from both processes and can help sellers and buyers prepare for the impact on the home purchase/sale process.


screen-shot-2016-12-03-at-1-41-32-pmUnderstanding the differences between an appraisal and an inspection can help you understand how to prepare for both kinds of evaluations and how those evaluations can impact the sale/purchase process.


Look for a continuation of our series on four common misconceptions about real estate transactions in upcoming issues. Coming soon: the difference between a home warranty and home insurance. To learn more, contact us today. We would love to help. To keep up with important housing market updates, follow us on Facebook.

The View from 101 York – December 2016

You better not cry … or pout. Santa Claus is coming to town. Whether you’re looking for holiday fun in LW Reedy’s home in downtown Elmhurst or in the surrounding areas, we’ve collected a list of fun holiday activities including parties, tree lightings, shopping and musical performances. 

Holiday Fun

Hometown Holiday Family Fun Day 
Dec. 10
Elmhurst City Centre Plaza

Sleigh Rides & Ice Sculptures
Dec. 17
Prairie Path Gazebo, Elmhurst

Elmhurst Art Museum Holiday Party
Dec. 17
Elmhurst Art Museum

Christmas in Elmhurst
Dec. 16 and 17
York High School, Elmhurst

Wonderland Express
Through Jan. 2, 2017
Chicago Botanic Garden


Holiday Shopping

christkindlmarketSanta’s Secret Workshop
Dec. 10
Wilder Mansion, Elmhurst

Chirstkindlemarket Chicago
Through Dec. 24
Daley Plaza, Chicago

Chirstkindlemarket Naperville
Through Dec. 24
Naper Settlement, Naperville


Holiday Lights

Wilder Park Tree Lightingmorton-illumination

Dec. 8
Wilder Park, Elmhurst

Through Jan. 2, 2017
Morton Arboretum, Lisle

Zoo Lights
Through Jan. 1, 2017
Lincoln Park Zoo, Chicago


LW Reedy has been serving the Elmhurst community and surrounding areas since 1951. As the largest locally-owned real estate agency in Elmhurst, we have a passion for local news and events.

If you have questions about Elmhurst and the surrounding suburbs and real estate in these areas, we’re your go-to people. Contact us today!

A Silver Dollar for Coach Newton

LW Reedy’s long history of supporting the York Community High School cross country team started soon after Joe Newton’s inaugural season as head coach in 1960. A friend introduced Larry Reedy, Senior, an athlete and all-around sports fan and the founder of LW Reedy Real Estate, to Coach Joe Newton. Larry Senior’s friend, an Elmhurst police officer, had a son on Joe’s team. Knowing Larry Senior would appreciate Joe’s coaching style, he invited him to a cross country meet.

Joe and Larry Senior immediately hit it off, and Larry Senior looked for ways to support Joe’s team, including attending many practices and meets. Larry Reedy Senior become a loyal fan of the team and the coach. When the team won one of their first state championships, Larry Senior wanted to mark the occasion with a special treat. He took the runners and coaches to White Fence Farm to celebrate. Since then the coach and his teams have won state 28 times and come in 2nd place 12 times and 3rd place 6 times.

While the White Fence Farm visit did not become a tradition, another tradition soon took hold. Larry Senior was known for giving silver dollars to people who made an impression on him. He often gave them to people he met in retirement homes, children, and others he found interesting. When Joe’s team won state meets, Larry Senior gave each team member a silver dollar. Sadly, Larry Senior passed away in 1986, but the tradition of handing out silver dollars to the team members in Larry’s honor continues. Leo or Dick Reedy, Larry Senior’s sons, give silver dollars to the team members at the York fall sports awards.

The legacy continues. Fifty-six cross country seasons later, as Coach Newton passes the baton to Coach Charlie Kern, Larry Reedy, Senior’s grandson, also named Larry Reedy (in honor of his grandfather), prepares to celebrate L.W. Reedy’s 65th year in business. As Charlie Kern takes on the head coaching position and Joe Newton ends his last season as head coach, the LW Reedy family continues to support the team.

The entire LW Reedy family and agents wish Joe Newton a happy retirement on behalf of his old friend, Larry Reedy, Senior. Thank you for years of inspiring our local Elmhurst youth to work hard, believe in themselves and achieve their dreams. Coach Kern, we look forward to a future continuing the tradition of the long green line.

For more information about Coach Newton, please visit this article  in the Chicago Tribune, and this interview from



Four Common Misconceptions About Real Estate Transactions: Part One—Illinois Tax Proration


Real estate transactions have many complicated components. In our more than 65 years of experience, four issues commonly come up for our clients:
  • The Illinois property tax prorating policy.
  • The difference between appraisals and inspections.
  • The difference between warranties and insurance.
  • How earnest money works.

Understanding these four concepts helps you make wise decisions whether as a buyer, seller or homeowner. This month, we cover the state of Illinois’ policy of prorating property taxes.

If you are a homeowner, you know only too well that property taxes are a major expense. However, they seem almost a hidden expense for many because they are frequently paid by escrow and folded into your monthly mortgage payment. Homeowners appreciate this convenience, but it can create confusion because of the state of Illinois’ rather unusual policy of charging property taxes in arrears. That is, property taxes for one year are not paid until the following year. Each year the tax bill for the previous year comes out in May, and the two payments are due in June and September. For example, as an Illinois homeowner, the property tax bill for the taxes incurred while you lived in your home in 2015 arrived in May of 2016. The first payment was due June 1, 2016, and the second payment was due September 1, 2016.

Typically, this does not cause issues for homeowners. You pay taxes personally or through your escrow every year, so which year they cover does not have a significant impact on you year to year. However, in a year that you buy or sell a home, the prorating of your property taxes creates a complicated adjustment to the real estate transaction, one that can be somewhat confusing for many homeowners.

Imagine if this were true: you purchase your first home in May of 2016. You receive a property tax bill that month for the property taxes incurred during 2015, and you are expected to make payments in June and September. Since you did not live in the home during 2015, it does not make sense for you to be responsible for those payments. The correction for this occurs during the closing, ensuring that the property taxes are covered by the people who lived in the home when the taxes were incurred. Because those taxes are the responsibility of the seller, the seller credits the buyer for those property taxes at the closing.

Consider this example: The Jones lived in their home from 2012 to 2016. They sold their home this summer to the Smiths, closing in June of 2016. This means the Jones property tax responsibility for that home would cover all of 2015 and the first half of 2016, which is three installments. The Jones’ paid their first property tax installment on June 1, 2016, which means at closing they owe the Smiths for the second installment due in 2016 and the first installment due in 2017.

The calculation gets a bit more complicated when you consider that taxes increase each year, and you cannot accurately predict the property taxes for the following year. Using our example, while we know what the Jones’ tax bill is for the second installment due in 2016, we do not know what the tax bill will be for the first installment of 2017, the one that covers the first half of 2016. To account for the increase in property taxes, the seller typically credits the buyer for an amount over the previous year’s tax bill, usually around 105%.

Closing timing impacts the amount credited to the buyer. If closing occurs before the first installment has been paid, then the seller owes one year plus the time up to the day of closing. As you may remember, the seller needs to cover the amount of time that they incurred taxes while living in the home. For example, if the closing was in March of 2016, then the seller credits the buyer for the two installments that cover 2015 and are due in 2016 and a prorated and adjusted amount to cover January through March of 2016.

Assuming the seller is receiving sufficient proceeds from the sale, the seller does not need to bring cash to cover the property tax payments. Instead, the amount is covered in the form of a credit that comes out of the proceeds from the sale of the home. It then reduces the amount of cash the buyer needs to bring to closing. While this may seem like a burden for the seller it typically becomes almost a wash if the seller is then buying a new home in Illinois because then they will receive a credit from their seller for the property taxes that will come due on their new home.


Look for a continuation of our series on four common misconceptions about real estate transactions in upcoming issues. Next month: the difference between an appraisal and an inspection. To learn more, contact us today. We would love to help. To keep up with important housing market updates, follow us on Facebook.

The View from 101 York – November 2016

It seems like the trick-or-treaters were just here yesterday, yet it’s already time to start thinking about holiday fun. Here at our perch in the heart of downtown Elmhurst, we’ve been hearing about many fun events in the Chicagoland area, including theater performances, parades, runs, holiday markets and tree lightings.

Arts and Theater

screen-shot-2016-11-02-at-10-36-21-pmBLOW UP: Inflatable Contemporary Art
Sept. 10 to Nov. 27
Elmhurst Art Museum

I and You
Nov. 17 to Nov. 20
Elmhurst College Theater

A Christmas Carol
Nov. 25 to 27
College of DuPage Theater


Parades, Runs and Walks


Cantigny 5K Run/Walk 2016

Nov. 5

Dan Gibbons Turkey Trot: A 5K Fun Run
Nov. 24

McDonald’s Thanksgiving Parade
Nov. 24
State Street, Chicago



Holiday Markets

holiday-marketWilder Mansion Holiday Market
Nov. 4 and 5
Wilder Mansion, Elmhurst

Lincoln Park Zoo Holiday Market
Nov. 29
Lincoln Park Zoo



Holiday Lights and Tree Trimming

screen-shot-2016-11-02-at-10-44-55-pmMagnificent Mile
Nov. 18 and 19
Michigan Avenue District, Chicago

Community Tree Trim
Nov. 19 and 20
Brookfield Zoo

Holiday Magic: Tree Lighting Ceremony
Nov. 20

Elmhurst City Center
Nov. 26
Elmhurst City Center




LW Reedy has been serving the Elmhurst community and surrounding areas since 1951. As the largest locally-owned real estate agency in Elmhurst, we have a passion for local news and events.

If you have questions about Elmhurst and the surrounding suburbs and real estate in these areas, we’re your go-to people. Contact us today!

The View from 101 York – October 2016

Halloween fun is popping up all over in and around Elmhurst. Here’s what we see from our perch in the heart of downtown Elmhurst.



Boo-tiful Saturday
October 29
Downtown Elmhurst

Trunk or Treat
October 29
Immanuel Lutheran Church, Elmhurst

Haunted Walks

Whether you are looking for a truly scary experience or a cute Halloween adventure with the kids, you’ll find it with one of these two Halloween walks.


Haunted Forest
October 14-15
Oak Brook Park District

Halloween Night Walks
October 21- 22
Fullersburg Woods

Halloween Theater

The Addams Family: A New Musicaladdams-family1
October 13-15
Elmhurst College

Don’t miss the creepy and kooky Addams Family as they pay a call on Elmhurst just in time for Halloween.

Disney’s Beauty and the Beast
October 14-16
Bryan Middle School

The tale as old as time comes to Elmhurst just in time to join the other beasts running around town this Halloween season.

More Halloween Fun

Boo! At the ZooScreen Shot 2016-10-12 at 1.11.25 PM.png
October 22-23, 29-30
Brookfield Zoo

Pumpkin Fest
October 1-31, 2016
Cosley Zoo, Wheaton

October 28
Cosley Zoo, Wheaton

Glass Pumpkin Patch
October 12-16
The Morton Arboretum

LW Reedy has been serving the Elmhurst community and surrounding areas since 1951. As the largest locally-owned real estate agency in Elmhurst, we have a passion for local news and events.

If you have questions about Elmhurst and especially real estate in Elmhurst, we’re your go-to people. Contact us today!

The View from 101 York – September 2016

LW Reedy has been serving the Elmhurst community and surrounding areas since 1951. As the largest locally-owned real estate agency in Elmhurst, we have a passion for local news and events. Here’s our view of the community for this month, from our perch at 101 York in the heart of downtown Elmhurst.

September 2-5, 2016
The Last Fling

The largest annual fundraiser of the Naperville Jaycees, the Last Fling runs Thursday Last FLingevening through Labor Day. There are concerts, a carnival, food booths and a host of other activities for people of all ages and interests. For the kids, take a look at the schedule in Family Funland. The Last Fling takes place in downtown Naperville at Jackson Avenue and Eagle Street. Click here for concert information and ticket prices.

September 9-10, 2016homewebad-rtb-b2b2016lineup
Elmhurst City Centre’s Rock The Block Party

This is City Centre’s premier event of the season where downtown Elmhurst turns into party central with food booths by Elmhurst’s favorite restaurants, fantastic free music and all your neighbors joining in the fun right in the middle of town at Schiller and York. Hop on the yellow trolley and avoid the hassle of parking while taking a comfortable ride through the streets of Elmhurst.

September 11, 2016
Fishing by Kayak

fly-fishing-in-kayak-TN-ARLearn how fishing on the water is different from sitting on the pier. Come to Hidden Lake at 9:00 am, and don’t forget your kayak or canoe. If you don’t own one, you can rent one for $20 per person. Minimum age is 14, but kids under 18 need an adult with them. Register here or call (630) 933-7248.

September 16 and September 30, 2016
Epiphany Children’s Clothing Resale and Children’s Toy/Equipment Resale

A tradition for over 25 years, it is time again for Epiphany Lutheran Church’s fall sale of used children’s epiphanyclothing, equipment and toys. The sale is open to everyone in the community and volunteer opportunities are available for those who want to help and also get the first look at the merchandise. The clothing sale is on Friday, the 16th from 6:00 to 9:00 pm and then again on Saturday the 17th from 8:00 to 11:00 am. The toy and equipment sale is on Friday, September 30th from 7:30 to 9:30 pm and then October 1st from 8:00 to 10:00 am. The church is located on the corner of Spring Road and Vallette Street. Here are some tips for getting the most out of your shopping experience.

September 14, 2016
Girls Nite Out at Wilder Mansion

girls-nite-out-topperDon’t miss the Third Annual Girls Nite Out at Wilder Mansion. Try some new wines, enjoy a 5-minute massage, sample chocolate and score some free giveaways. There will also be experts with make-up tips and other surprises waiting. The admission is $10 at the door and the hours are 4:00 to 9:00 pm. Wilder Mansion is located at 211 Prospect Avenue.

September 23, 2016
Night Hike By Lantern Lightflashlight

Take a hike after dark without getting in trouble. McKee Marsh is open for a lantern-lit self-guided hike complete with snacks and s’mores around the fire. Don’t forget your flashlight and protection against mosquitoes. All ages are welcome and the cost is $5 per person. Register online or at (630) 850-8110.



The View from 101 York – August 2016

LW Reedy has been serving the Elmhurst community and surrounding areas since 1951. As the largest locally-owned real estate agency in Elmhurst, we have a passion for local news and events. Here’s our view of the community for this month, from our perch at 101 York in the heart of downtown Elmhurst.

August 1 – August 31, 2016

The Art of Science Learning (AOSL)

ArtofScienceVisit the Elmhurst Art Museum and take a look at projects from hundreds of scientists, artists, educators and others addressing the challenges of living in this world. Take your own turn with the creative process and explore the tools and experiences used by the AOSL’s Chicago, San Diego and Worcester (MA) Incubators to create your own solutions. The cost is $8 for an adult, $7 for seniors and free for students under 18 years old.

WDCB JazzAugust 4, 2016

3rd Annual Lakeside Summer Series

Take a drive to the College of DuPage and enjoy some free music under the stars. Purchase delicious food on site from local restaurants or sip some wine while you listen to the funk, rhythm and blues sounds of Walter “Wolfman” Washington & the Roadmasters. If you can’t make it on the 4th,  award-winning jazz organist  Brian Charette will perform on August 11, and acclaimed Chicago-born trumpeter and composer Marquis Hill will entertain on August 25th. Admission to WDCB LIVE Jazz Concerts is free and all performances begin at 7:30 pm. For more information, call (630) 942-4000.

August school of rockAugust 5, 2016

First Fridays Rock

City Centre Plaza in Downtown Elmhurst will be rocking with music from the School of Rock’s House Band and then with other talented students from the area. Bring your friends and family and spend a fun evening in downtown Elmhurst.


August 14, 2016

Historical Tour of Black Chicago Gravel Locomotive #18

The Veterans Park on Main Street and Church Road in Bensenville is the place for a tour of the Black Chicago Gravel Company steam locomotive #18, along with the Hiawatha passenger car and bay window caboose. Conductor Karl will give tours and answer questions about this antique train. The tours take place from 1:00 to 3:00 pm. Admission is free and everyone is welcome.

August 20, 2016

Park Palooza

park-palooza-adThe fourth annual Park Palooza will invade Berens Park with music, food and fun at 5:00 pm. The food trucks, face painting and kids activities will be the perfect close to summer.  Food trucks from Barbeque Jim’s, Big World’s Tortas, Cupcakes for CourageDa Pizza Dude, Happy Lobster Truck, Kona IceMario’s Cart, Toasty Cheese  and Yum Dum will be on site. New Odyssey will play from 5:30 to7:30 pm. and No Alternative from 8:00 to 10:15 pm.

August 27, 2016

Paddle With a Ranger

Take advantage of a guided tour starting at Fullersburg Woods beginning at 9:00 and ending at 11:30 am. Bring your own canoe or kayak or rent one for $20 per person. This program is for people 14 years and older, adult supervision is required for those under 18. Register online or at (630) 933-7248.

The View from 101 York – July 2016

LW Reedy has been serving the Elmhurst community and surrounding areas since 1951. As the largest locally-owned real estate agency in Elmhurst, we have a passion for local news and events. Here’s our view of the community for this month, from our perch at 101 York in the heart of downtown Elmhurst.

July 3, 2016

Taste of Oak Brook

Enjoy samples of all that Oak Brook restaurants have to offer starting at 4:00 pm. Visit the Prince of Taste of Oak BrookWales Field at 2606 York Road in Oak Brook and gain free admittance with a parking fee of $10.  Don’t forget to bring the kids for balloon artists, face painting, and the petting zoo. Food and beverages, as well as, some of the children’s activities will be purchased with tickets.

Participating restaurants include Gibsons Steakhouse, Kona Grill , Labriola Bakery Café, McCormick & Schmick’s, Novi’s Beef, Paul’s Pizza & Hotdogs, Pinstripes, Real Urban Barbecue , Shree, and Tuscany. The Taste of Oak Brook will conclude with music from several local groups and a spectacular fireworks display.

July 10, 2016

The Commander’s Cup

Polo originated in 1892 as a way to improve an officer’s horsemanship skills. The sport rose in popularity in the late 1800s and early 1900s. In Polo1949, the Illinois National Guard organized an indoor league at the Chicago Avenue Armory, now the Museum of Contemporary Art.  Fast forward to current times and horses still pound the dirt in polo matches at the Oak Brook Polo Club at 2606 York Road in Oak Brook. The schedule of events starts at 10:00 am with a Champagne Brunch. The gates open at 1:00 pm. The Polo festivities start at 2:00 pm with the featured match beginning at 3:00 pm Tickets start at $10 each.

July 12, 19, and 26, 2016

Summer Fun and Games

craftCome to the Elmhurst History Museum on Tuesdays, July 12, 19, or 26 for a fun afternoon featuring crafts and games. Enjoy a picnic lunch on the lawn at 11:30 am. The Museum will provide complimentary juice boxes and treats for kids aged three to 12 when accompanied by a caregiver. The museum is located at 120 E. Park Avenue in Elmhurst. The cost is free to members and $3 for non-members.

animalsJuly 17, 2016

All Animal Expo

Get up close and personal with a wide assortment of animals at the DuPage County Fairgrounds located at 2015 Manchester Road in Wheaton.  Admission is $5 and parking is free. The expo starts at 10:00 am and runs until 3:00 pm.

July 22, 2016

Elmhurst 4th Annual Cycling Classic

Join the fun and watch the 4th Annual Elmhurst’s Cycling Classic, which starts and finishes at Wilder Cycling ClassicMansion on Prospect Avenue. If you want to do a little biking yourself, join the Olympia Chiropractic Family Fun Bike Parade at 6:10 pm and ride the professional course before the professionals take the track. Decorate your family’s bikes because prizes will be awarded for the best-themed riders at the finish line, and enjoy the crowds’ cheers as you ride the 1.2 mile course around Elmhurst College. Register early and ride for free or register on the day of the ride and pay $5 per rider.  Check-in and day-of registration will take place at the Wilder Mansion north parking lot between 3pm – 5:50pm.

July 27, 2016 – July 31, 2016

The DuPage County Fair

County FairVisit the DuPage County Fair Grounds and take in all the sights and smells of a real old-fashioned county fair with great food, music, one-of-a-kind attractions, rides and animals. The Fair Grounds is located at 2015 Manchester Road in Wheaton. Click here for ticket information. Parking is free. Hours run from 8:00 am to 10:00 pm Wednesday through Saturday. Hours on Sunday are 8:00 am to 10:30 am.

The Ever Popular Cape Cod Home

Our previous blog explored Colonial home architecture. We saw many different styles and variations,  15W243 Lexingtonoften  determined by the weather conditions of the home’s location. The Cape Cod style is a subset of Colonial architecture. In the 1700s, the Cape Cod often had a centered door with windows on either side. Inside the home, the staircase ran up the center of the house with a big chimney positioned to provide heat to the living areas and ceilings were low to keep the heat where it was needed. Builders used materials that would protect from the frigid winters, primarily timber, but soon started using local materials. Shingles were often made out of cedar or used pine flooring and were left unpainted, eventually turning gray over time. The homes were smaller than most colonials, usually between 1,000 and 2,000 square feet.Standard_Floor_Plans_for_a_Cape_Cod_Cottage-_ca._1940

Cape Cod homes differed from Colonials because they often had a master bedroom on the first floor and a loft on the second floor for the children. A typical Cape Cod home had very little ornamentation on the outside. A common decoration now, shutters originally served a very important purpose in protecting the windows during the wild storms of the Northeast.  The roof had a steep pitch to encourage snow to roll off and the inside walls were finished with wainscotting in order to prevent condensation from forming.

The popularity of the Cape Cod style could easily be attributed to Royal Barry Wills (1905-1962) an architect who designed variations which appealed to everyone from the affluent to returning service men who flocked to the planned communities and tract homes built after World Royal Barry WillsWar II. Mr. Wills improved upon this design to include modern amenities that provided more privacy and technology, including bathrooms and kitchens, while maintaining the simplicity, functionality and livability of the original Cape Cod design. Along with architecture, Wills was an accomplished author and used his talents to write books and magazine articles about his designs, thus ensuring that all parts of the country could benefit from his innovations.

The modern Cape Cod in some ways bears little resemblance to the original. Architects have moved the 980 S Springcentral fireplace to one side with the advent of more modern heating methods. While the original Cape Cod had no porch, often there is a screened porch to one side of the home and sometimes a porch is built across the front in more modern homes. What used to be a loft on the second story has expanded with the use of dormers to much more usable living space.  Garages and additions have been added in the back to increase common living space.

Cape Cod houses are ubiquitous, showing up on almost every block  where snow flies in the winter. Its popularity is rooted in the affordability and convenient layout most families require in their homes. But even with the changes adopted along the way, a Cape Cod home still shares its roots with the homes our forefathers raised their own families in.