A new path with Compass

Joan Smothers launched Smothers Realty Group in 1996 and built her company to be the No. 1 brokerage in La Grange. So why would a successful broker-owner trade their independence to join Compass?

Welcome to the Clubhouse: Why are brokers flocking to this new app?

Agents are swearing by the year-old Clubhouse app that allows more than 10 million users to host town hall-style audio-only forums on various topics.

So, you want to sell luxury properties but don’t know how to get started

LaFido has spent more than 20 years in the industry working in luxury sales and training agents to work in the field. In 2016, he launched his Luxury Listing Specialist (LUXE) certification program.

The Causes You Care About

We asked you, our readers, about the causes that are near and dear to your heart.

Making the dream work: How teams fit into brokerages

We spoke to the people who manage teams at the three local brokerages to learn how teams fit into the larger picture.

A big corporate employer leaves town. Then what?

An exodus of corporate jobs doesn’t automatically spell bad news for a suburb’s real estate market. Learn how Hoffman Estates is taking an active role in turning what could have been an economic disaster into a potential boon.

Regulatory challenges facing suburban agents and developers

Seemingly arbitrary building ordinances in some suburban cities and towns effectively limit the supply of new homes for sale and make it difficult to sell existing homes. Not only are there many specific local codes that prove challenging to agents and brokers operating in the suburbs, but also there are some that exacerbate the inventory shortage while leaving promising development opportunities untapped.

Staying on the right side of Airbnb rules, regs and taxes

In Chicago, STRs are governed by a hulking, 58-page ordinance, and there are other restrictions layered on by city regulators and condo boards. So, if you or one of your clients are looking to buy an investment property with an eye toward listing it on a platform such as Airbnb, where do you start?

The Airbnb lending puzzle

The mortgage lending industry and its public referees have responded to short-term rentals with more accommodation than restriction, a positive development for homeowners who hope to earn income through a short-term rental platform. Not only is it possible for homeowners to potentially secure more favorable financing terms on their primary residences if they are renting them out — they also have the same opportunity to do so if they purchase a second home.

Deciding between Airbnb and traditional property management

Whether you work in property management or your clients are looking for advice on how to capitalize on these opportunities, it’s important to consider the ways managing a short-term rental property differs from managing one for long-term tenants. Here are a few key factors to weigh before making a decision.

People first, then tech

Though @properties is one of very few independent shops that develops technology in-house, co-founder Thad Wong said they didn’t initially set out with any particular focus on technology.

If you build it, they will come

Learn how one Dream Town agent rolled up his sleeves and got to work employing his limited programming skills to create a site for his business that uses a custom-built search function.

The path to painless tech integration

Keeping up with the latest tools requires not just deciding to use technology, but ensuring everyone on the team is able to take full advantage of it.

3 tech trends that can make home sales easier

There are a few technologies that are poised to make significant leaps in the next year or so. How will they affect how you
do business?

Taking the reins after tragedy

After her husband and business partner died suddenly, Emily Jeffries had to become the new managing broker of the office, taking over daily operations while preparing for and taking the test to earn her managing broker license.

The ‘secret sauce’ of allocating a marketing budget

There’s more than one way to look at marketing, and three managing brokers shared their favored approaches with us.

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