Persistence Pays in A Tight Market

Persistence Pays in A Tight Market

Season 4 - Episode 2
Jan 30, 2024
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When Brittany and Ryan can’t agree on where to buy, Chicago’s low housing inventory presents an even higher hurdle. Using strategy, negotiation and unbounded resilience, can REALTOR® Jenny position the pair to land a 4 bedroom home in the perfect spot?

Jenny (00:05):

On this episode, we are hunting in and around Chicago for a family's first home. It checked off a lot of the boxes.

Ryan (00:13):

Aside from the city box,

Brittany (00:14):

You said you live in Bolingbrook.

Jenny (00:17):

I'm realtor Jenny Lynn Spigots a member of the National Association of Realtors Welcome Tier Oasis. I'm trying to get Brittany and Ryan to agree on a four bedroom house for under $450,000. We have to come in as strong as we can, but when their offers keep coming up short,

Brittany (00:36):

I want to go all in.

Jenny (00:38):

I rework the game plan, hoping to score their ultimate goal.



A home of their own. Oh, we're getting that house.


My name is Jenny Ligos and I have been a real estate agent for 20 years in the land area. Ready to look for some houses. I'm so ready. Okay, let's go do this. I mostly focus on the North Shore, but also the surrounding suburbs like Bolingbrook, Berwyn, and Westmont with limited inventory and rising interest rates. The real estate market has been very challenging, so that's probably going to be our closest comp. With my experience, it's up to me to advise my clients to prepare a well-rounded offer that could beat out other offers should we be in a multiple bid situation. My first time home buyers, Ryan and Brittany have five boys, so they need a house to accommodate them all. Ryan and Brittany are currently renting a home in Bolingbrook.

Brittany (01:39):

My name is Brittany. I'm an account luxury manager within the fashion industry.

Ryan (01:43):

My name is Ryan and I'm a youth soccer coach. Finish. Go


We're looking to buy our first home in Chicago

Brittany (01:50):

Or the surrounding suburb.

Ryan (01:52):

I called Jenny on my own at one point and I was like, Jenny, we got to get into the city or closer to the city.

Jenny (01:57):

Ryan and Brittany are differing right now in where they want to land. Brittany wants suburbs. Ryan wants more city feel, so we've been kind of going all over the place.

Ryan (02:07):

We've seen a lot of homes. I can't even tell you how many at this point.

Jenny (02:10):

We went to probably about 30 houses. Ryan and Brittany won a four bedroom, two and a half bath home.

Brittany (02:18):

Our pre-approval was 430,000. I would like to stay around 400.

Jenny (02:23):

We have put in five or six offers and have not been chosen. I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that we didn't go that far over list price and also because they're not putting that much down.

Brittany (02:38):

I really love this neighborhood and I really hope we get to stay next to you, mom. Yeah, that'd be great. It takes a village. So we're currently living in Bolingbrook. We are four minutes away from my mom, which is a huge help with us having the five kids, so I would like to stay within that range. 15, 20 minutes max. That's ideal for me.

              L3: Bolingbrook is 29 miles from Chicago which is around a 40 minute drive.

Ryan (02:57):


Jenny (02:59):

I would love to stay at the same school.



I just want to stay here to be with my friends.

Ryan (03:02):

Yeah, that'd be great. We can stay in this neighborhood and I definitely would be okay with staying in Bolingbrook. It's a real community. People know one another. It's a cool environment and a cool atmosphere. So I did tell Brittany if we find a house in this subdivision, I'll stay in Bolingbrook.

Brittany (03:15):

He said that's the only way.

Ryan (03:16):

There's no other way. I'm staying in Bowlingbrook.

Jenny (03:20):

I'm going to show them a four bedroom, two and a half bath, two story home in Bowlingbrook, just around the corner from her family.

Ryan (03:27):

Man, I'm stoked that it's in the same neighborhood we currently live in.

Brittany (03:30):

What are the odds?

Jenny (03:31):

Hey guys, how are you?

Brittany (03:32):

Hi Jenny. So good to see

Jenny (03:34):

Can you believe we found this house in your neighborhood?

Brittany (03:38):

We literally walked here.

Jenny (03:39):

You can't complain, Ryan. It was built in 19 95, 4 bedrooms, two and a half baths, tonal renovation. So you really are just moving into almost a brand new house.

Brittany (03:50):

I'm curious to see what an inside looks like in regards to the floor plan, but I'm excited.

              L3: 4 Bedrooms, 2.5 Bathrooms

Jenny (03:54):

Brian, what do you think?

Ryan (03:55):

I like it right now. I like the location as far as Bolingbrook goes. Yeah.

Jenny (03:59):

You guys ready to go in and take a tour?

Brittany (04:01):

Absolutely. Let's do it.

Jenny (04:02):

Check it out. This is listed at 359. This gives us enough room to negotiate. Come on in guys.

              L3: 359,000

Brittany (04:10):

Wow. Alright.

Ryan (04:12):


Jenny (04:13):

What do you think so far?

Brittany (04:14):

Wow. I wasn't expecting this.

Ryan (04:16):

It's nice and bright.

Jenny (04:17):

The floors are brand new. We'll start the tour this way. Okay. What do you think about the dining room?

Brittany (04:22):

I love the size. Clearly they were able to fit a table in here that's big enough for our family size.

Jenny (04:27):

Come into the kitchen here.

Brittany (04:29):

I'm obsessed with the countertops.

Ryan (04:31):

She's going to want these appliances to be stainless steel, but it's okay. You've got a couple of stainless steel appliances.

Jenny (04:36):

You can budget for it later.

Brittany (04:38):

I wish the island was a little bit longer and wider. I do cook a lot, so counter space is going to be huge for me.

Jenny (04:44):

Well, you also have this open family room.

Ryan (04:47):

I like that. It feels very joined and this being open

Brittany (04:50):

And I do like that it's straight off from the kitchen.

Jenny (04:53):

Come on. My favorite part of the house. Here you go. What do you think?

Brittany (04:57):


Ryan (04:58):

Right now this is what I'm talking about.

Jenny (05:01):

So you got your grill station here. You've got this great hanging out area. I love the yard space for your boys.

Brittany (05:07):


Ryan (05:08):

Not enough space for 11 V 11 soccer field, but we'll make do.

Brittany (05:11):

The backyard was really one of our favorite parts of the house. The fact that it was fenced in, we had room to be able to entertain and host.

Jenny (05:17):

Let's go finish our tour. Let's start with the primary.

Brittany (05:22):


Jenny (05:23):

So what do you think about the size?

Ryan (05:24):

I feel like this is definitely workable. We've been in some small places where I like this.

Jenny (05:29):

Well, you know what? The vaulted ceilings help a lot.

Ryan (05:31):

There you go. Yeah, see, I like that for sure.

Brittany (05:33):

I do love the en suite bathroom so we can kind of keep the older boys out. I need my own area. I love the double vanities. I do notice that there is no tub and I do think that's something that will be missed, but I definitely love the shower. It almost feels like it's a spa.

Jenny (05:49):

Now we have the nursery here.

Brittany (05:51):

Love the accent wall and it's kind of already set up for our current situation with having the smaller kids.

Ryan (05:57):

For me, the biggest is it being so close to the room here. If we get them out of our bed from co-sleeping and we can actually hear them when they wake up,

Jenny (06:07):

It will eventually be used.

Ryan (06:10):

Incentive, incentive.

Jenny (06:11):

Let's go check out the other room.

Brittany (06:14):

I really like this size of this room. We have an older son who could possibly be leaving for school soon. We could always turn this into a guest bedroom or even move the smaller kids into here. It's a lot more space. It's a really, really nice size room. I mean, I really feel like this is it. It

Jenny (06:32):

Seems like it checks off a lot of the boxes.

Ryan (06:34):

It checks off all the boxes aside from the city box, but we're here.

Brittany (06:39):

You said you'd live in Bolingbrook. If it were in the same neighborhood and we are here, we definitely want to put it in the offer. What do you think about asking price?

Jenny (06:48):

It's listed at three fifty nine? I have to call the listing agent to see if she's expecting any other offers. If they are, then we're going to probably have to go north of the listing price, but if not, I have no problems going at asking price.

Brittany (07:01):

I feel like the stars are aligned and everything is truly coming together.

Jenny (07:04):

It's so exciting. Good to see you guys to see you as well. I just got off the phone with a listing agent and now I have to call Ryan and Brittany.

Brittany (07:22):

Hey, Jenny with the good news.

Jenny (07:24):

Hi Brittany. Are you with Ryan?

Brittany (07:26):

Yes, I am.

Ryan (07:27):

Give us some good news here.

Jenny (07:29):

Oh my God, I wish I could.

Jenny (07:32):

Unfortunately our offer was not accepted.

Brittany (07:35):

What? You're kidding me.

Jenny (07:36):

I know. I feel so terrible.

Ryan (07:39):

It's discouraging. We felt like this was definitely ours.

Jenny (07:42):

I feel so bad for Ryan and Brittany because the sellers have expectations of getting top dollar for their house. We went a little bit higher than the list price and still didn't get it.

Jenny (07:54):

I know we've looked at a ton of homes. All we can do right now is keep looking, have some patience. I promise you. We'll find the right one.

              L3: Ryan and Brittany submitted an offer $15,000 over asking price

Brittany (08:02):

Sounds good. Let's talk soon.

Jenny (08:03):

You got it. As we are continually making these offers and not getting them, of course they're heartbroken because they so desperately want to place for their family, but I am determined and I know we'll find the right house for them. I have identified a house in Westmont that I think they're going to love.

Brittany (08:33):

I love this. Wow. Oh my goodness. What do you guys think? It's beautiful. It's beautiful. It's amazing,

Ryan (08:38):

And we're closer to the city.

Jenny (08:42):

Come on. Let me show you.

Brittany (08:44):

Look at the porch.

Jenny (08:45):

This porch can fit your entire family. Why don't we sit down? I want to talk a bit about the house before we go in. Four bedrooms, two and a half bath, just like the Bolingbrook house. Generous room sizes. Still close enough to your parents.

              L3: 4 Bedrooms, 2.5 Bathrooms

Brittany (08:57):

It's kind of in the sweet spot of where we want it to be. About 15, 20 minutes away. Yeah. Okay.

Jenny (09:02):

A little bit higher in price, so top of your range. It's listed at four 10. At four 10. It gives them enough room if we need to go over list price. All right guys, come on in.

              L3: 410,000

Brittany (09:13):

Wow, this is insane, right?

Ryan (09:16):

I like it.

Brittany (09:17):

It's absolutely beautiful. It's a very similar layout to Bolingbrook.

Jenny (09:22):

So what about the dining room? Is it going to fit your family?

Brittany (09:25):

They clearly have a table here that would accommodate our family size, so I feel like the size is pretty spot on.

Jenny (09:30):

Oh good. Why don't we go through here to the kitchen?

Brittany (09:33):

Oh my goodness. This kitchen is beautiful. I love the storage space. I love the coffee bar, the wet bar.

Ryan (09:41):

The island is a little bit small still,

Brittany (09:43):

But it's wider and you're also given so much counter space,

Ryan (09:47):

But I do like the granite countertops better from the Bolingbrook property.

Brittany (09:50):

They have the stainless steel appliances.

Ryan (09:53):

Yeah. Let me stop saying things I don't like about here. Since we're closer to the city.

Jenny (09:59):

Now, I want you to feel the flow. How does it feel to you?

Brittany (10:03):

I love that seating is right off from the kitchen. As we mentioned, we do entertain a lot and this is definitely a lot more space.

Ryan (10:09):

I like the brick fireplace.

Jenny (10:11):

What do you think about the office?

Brittany (10:13):

It's very open, which is always a good thing.

Jenny (10:16):

How about we go upstairs and then we can check out the rest of the house?

Brittany (10:19):

Sounds good.

Ryan (10:20):

Something that already noticed, got carpet on the stairs.

Brittany (10:24):

This is such a high traffic area with this lighter carpet. I think it's going to be a disaster.

Jenny (10:28):

Well, the good news is it's a small area, so if you want to replace it, it won't cost you an arm and a leg. Okay. You have the primary suite.

Brittany (10:36):

Oh my god. This room is massive.

Ryan (10:40):

Is this a king?

Jenny (10:41):

This is a king and it looks so small in this room, right?

Ryan (10:45):

It does look small.

Brittany (10:45):

It does because the space is massive. Love the windows,

Jenny (10:49):

Ton of natural light coming in, and then your primary bathroom is just straight ahead.

Brittany (10:55):

Oh my God. Double vanity.

Ryan (10:57):

I might have some space to put my own stuff.

Brittany (10:59):

Love the marble flooring. Love the black and white shower. Contrast is a little tight though for a primary bathroom, but I feel like the space is still manageable.

Jenny (11:08):

All right guys, I want to show you the nursery. Okay. I think it'll be plenty of space for your two littles.

Brittany (11:15):

I love the size of this room. I'm still not crazy about this carpet up here. I just feel like with boys, it's going to be a disaster.

Ryan (11:24):

I think it's maintainable.

Jenny (11:25):

There's some things that you're going to have to give and take. Now this bedroom feels like a primary.

Brittany (11:32):

Whoa. I was not expecting this size room. You were right about the generosity of the size of the room. Yeah. Well, I love what I've seen so far.

Jenny (11:41):

Let's go to the backyard because I saved the best for less. Welcome to your oasis.

Brittany (11:49):

Oh my God.

Ryan (11:51):


Jenny (11:54):

Feels like a resort, doesn't it?

Ryan (11:56):

It's not a soccer field, but we could have a little Michael Phelps. There you go. I don't know. That's right. We deal with it.

Jenny (12:02):

Ryan, you have your grilling station here too, and it's right off the kitchen. You have our hosting area, entertaining area. Wow. I just love it. You can hang out here all summer long.

Brittany (12:13):

Yeah, but I mean guys, we can't have a pool with small children. It's an accident waiting to happen.

Jenny (12:17):

You have a retractable liner and it'll cover the entire pool.

Ryan (12:22):

I'm thinking of the maintenance and the cost of maintenance. I know that's a thing.

Jenny (12:26):

That's a good point. And then if you want to keep it heated, you're going to have an extra incurred cost.

              L3: The annual cost to own a pool is $3,000 to $6,000

Brittany (12:31):

So wait a minute. This is a heated pool?

Jenny (12:33):


Brittany (12:33):


Jenny (12:35):

What are your thoughts?

Brittany (12:36):

So interior and of course the porch I'm completely sold with. I'm a little nervous about the pool, but you have given us another alternative for it, so it's not a huge deal breaker for me.

Ryan (12:49):

Plus that cover is brilliant.

Jenny (12:51):

Don't forget, we're on the higher end of your budget.

Ryan (12:54):

What are you thinking, babe? How are you feeling?

Brittany (12:55):

I think we want to put a offer in.

Jenny (12:57):

So it's listed at four 10 and you're pre-approved for four 30. What number are you thinking about?

Brittany (13:03):

I want to go all in four 30 top of our budget. I can't take any more rejection.

Ryan (13:07):

Let's do it. I'm feeling it. I love it. We're putting in an offer and we're maxing out. Do you see this place?

Jenny (13:15):

I'm going to talk to the listing agent and we'll write up the offer and we'll keep our fingers crossed.

Brittany (13:19):

Okay, Jenny, we need you to come through with this one.

Ryan (13:22):

No more rejection for us.

Jenny (13:24):

We'll put our best foot forward. Hi, Ryan Hi, Brittany.

              L3: The next day…

Brittany (13:38):

Hi, Jenny

Ryan (13:39):

What's going on?

Jenny (13:40):

I've got some news. I cannot believe I have to deliver bad news again. So Westmont house, they didn't accept our offer.

Brittany (13:48):

I don't understand.

Ryan (13:50):

It's laughable. At this point.

Brittany (13:52):

A joke.

Ryan (13:52):

You start feeling kind of like a reject and no pun intended, but you're like, man, what's going on here?

Brittany (13:59):

Is it me? Is it us? What are we doing?

Jenny (14:01):

But I have some good news to share. The Bowlingbrook house just went back on the market. Yes, literally today. So I just wanted to let you know that it's on the market. Are you still interested?

              L3: The previously accepted offer on the Bollingbrook house fell through

Brittany (14:17):

He stalks that house. What do you mean? Are we interested? We better move on that pretty fast.

Jenny (14:21):

Still at 359. Okay. We have to come in as strong as we can.

Brittany (14:26):

I think we should definitely go over. I'm thinking three 80. How do you feel about that?

Ryan (14:30):

I'm okay with that.

Jenny (14:32):

Yes, because I think that's a solid offer. Yes. I do think one thing we should add to it is an appraisal gap addendum. Okay.

Brittany (14:40):

What is that?

Jenny (14:40):

When the house appraises at a lesser value than the offer price, then it's up to the buyers to fill that gap.

Ryan (14:48):

It seems risky, but how confident do you feel that it will get appraised for that?

              L3: An appraisal gap addendum can make an offer more competitive in a tight market

Jenny (14:51):

I think it will appraise.

Brittany (14:52):

I mean, whatever we have to do to get this house the second time around,

Ryan (14:55):

I'm pretty open for it.

Jenny (14:56):

I think this house is meant for you if it came back.

Ryan (14:59):

Okay. I agree.

Jenny (15:01):

I'm going to talk to the listing agent. I'm going to tell them we're still interested that we're submitting an offer, and I'll go back to the office and write everything back up with the addendum. Bye guys.

              L3: Ryan and Brittany’s offer: $380,000 with an appraisal gap addendum

Brittany (15:11):

So exciting. I'm cautiously optimistic at this point.

Ryan (15:16):

I'm just cautious.

Jenny (15:20):

Oh, we're getting that house. Just got off the phone with the listing agent. We got the house. Go, Ryan, go for it. We got it.

Brittany (15:35):

We finally got the house. I can't believe we did it. We're so excited to be first time home buyers in a neighborhood that we actually love.

Jenny (15:42):

The good news is the pre came out at the exact same number as what we're buying it for, so no extra money out of their pockets and we can just go straight to closing.

Ryan (15:53):

No one had to compromise. I'm excited. Brittany's excited. What more could you ask for.

Brittany (16:00):

Mom, I'm so glad we got to stay close to you. I know. Five minutes away, we wouldn't have been able to do this without Jenny. She definitely was encouraging along a very discouraging process. She motivated us.

Ryan (16:11):

She made it work. She did her thing.

Jenny (16:12):

I'm so happy for Ryan and Brittany that they got this house

Ryan (16:16):

Offer after offer after offer. We finally made it

Jenny (16:18):

Happen. It's ironic that we've come full circle because this house was really their first love.

Ryan (16:24):

Hey guys, are you liking the new house? Yeah,

Brittany (16:28):

We did it.

Ryan (16:28):


Ryan (16:30):


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