Robinson Sarah Jane
My husband and I had a wonderful experience with Mike. We first met with him approximately six months before we actually placed an offer on a home, and alerted him to the types of properties we would be interested in (new construction projects within our price range). Over the ensuing months, only two projects surfaced that met our requirements, and Mike scheduled times for us to meet with the listing agents to discuss the projects and attended the meetings with us. Since we were first-time homebuyers, he helped us identify the proper questions to ask and spot potential concerns and issues, and also helped us navigate the process. We weren't ready to take the plunge with the first home, and we almost passed up the second home as well, but Mike recognized that it was exactly what we were looking for and encouraged us to think further and consider our financing options, and now we live in that home! We put in an offer over the holidays. Despite the poor timing, Mike made himself available to help us negotiate the terms of our offer. We also spent considerable time on the phone while he patiently explained to us the pros and cons of our options. When we asked for his advice he gave it, but mostly he helped guide us in our own decision-making. Since it was a new-construction project, our ability to negotiate the terms of our deal was somewhat limited but Mike was not dissuaded - he pushed really hard for us and got us a great price on our new home, with upgrades and add-ons included. We had a long attorney review period with some difficult back-and-forth with the listing agent and the developer. Mike stayed on top of all parties and kept us informed of all developments. There were approximately four months between when our contract was signed and when we closed (while the home was under construction) and Mike was our number-one guy the entire time. Throughout this period we had several questions and issues that needed to be addressed by the seller, which proved to be an incredibly difficult process. Mike was relentless in his pursuit - he sent email after email and made countless phone calls until we had the information we needed. He also shielded us from much of the unpleasantness involved with this process, for which we were so grateful. Buying a home - particularly one under construction - can be very stressful, and Mike truly did everything he could to facilitate the process. When the time came to do walk-throughs and inspections, Mike was available and present at every appointment. We always appreciated and enjoyed his presence - he had great insights and is a pleasure to be around (funny, kind, level-headed, but knows when he needs to advocate for us and isn't afraid to do so). Mike also referred us to our real estate attorney, mortgage broker, and home inspector, all of whom were awesome throughout the process. He assembled a team of people who advocated for us at every step. Our situation was unique in that we didn't tour several homes on the market before buying, but I am confident that Mike would have been a great person to navigate this process. He is very responsive and easy to work with. He is knowledgeable about the real estate market in many of Chicago's neighborhoods. He finds the balance between acting as a voice of reason and a calming presence, but also will tell you when you're asking for too little, and will fight on your behalf. I have zero reservations about referring Mike - I hope to never move again (or at least not for a long time), but if/when we do, Mike's our guy.