We worked with Holly on the purchase of a two-flat in Irving Park. She was great. We were buying in a fairly low price range, where the market is very competitive and we put in a lot of offers before we finally got something. Holly managed to stay simultaneously realistic and optimistic about what properties we stood a chance at being able to win in a multiple offer situation (they were all multiple offer situations). Soon after we started looking, it became clear that we needed to get in to see houses as soon as they came on the market and that we needed to put in an offer right away if we were interested. Holly was very available to look at properties with us and when we eventually started the process of buying a short sale she was good about staying in touch and informing us about our options while we waited for approval (bank approval ended up taking a couple months). One last thing that I appreciate about Holly is that she was generally careful about not pushing us toward or away from putting in an offer on a property, except for in a few instances where she felt strongly that something was a a really bad or good deal. I put four stars rather than five for "process expertise". I did this because we were buying with an FHA loan, which is a type of financing that Holly didn't have a lot of experience with when we started out. So there were several things that she learned along with us. That being said, Holly was very open about it when she didn't know the facts about something related to our financing--I think this is the only healthy way to deal with that scenario. When we first started thinking about buying a house we talked to a couple of mortgage counselors at local banks about FHA loans who had extremely negative views on FHA financing. We soon found out from people who knew more about FHA that much of what we had been told at these banks was either false or highly misleading. I think the situation was simply that these mortgage advisers didn't understand FHA, but rather than admit to that they became defensive and discouraging. This is a long way of saying that Holly did not do that and that I'm very grateful to have worked with an agent who would simply be forthright when she needs to ask someone else for more facts on an issue.
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