Illinois REALTORS® can use specially designed Fair Housing materials

April may be Fair Housing Month, but the materials Illinois REALTORS® can obtain from their state association can be used year-round, such as “Fair Housing Is a Serious Matter! A Guide for Real Estate Professionals.”

The four-panel brochure can be downloaded and used by local associations during new member orientation or during individual office sales training or sales meetings. Also, consumers may find it helpful in understanding fair housing laws and programs REALTORS® use.

Other Illinois REALTORS® materials include:

For more information, visit www.IllinoisRealtors.org/FairHousing

Also available are materials from the National Association of REALTORS®.

Morning Minute: Mortgage rates move lower for second week

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Mortgage rates shifted lower this week with a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage averaging 4.14 percent and a 15-year, fixed-rate mortgage averaging 3.39 percent, according to Freddie Mac. It marks the second consecutive week that rates have trended lower. Read more.

In other headlines:

Don’t Panic! 3 Money-Saving, Last-Minute Tax Tips for Homeowners – Realtor.com

How to Select the Right Sheen to Your Paint – NAR’s Styled, Staged and Sold

Morning Minute: What’s that smell? Tips for tackling common household odors

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You want prospective home buyers to notice your beautifully restored hardwood floors or the gleaming stainless steel appliances in your kitchen, not a musty basement or your cat’s litter box. Realtor.com’s “Ultimate Guide to Funky Home Smells,” can help you root out and eliminate offending odors in your house. Read more.

In other headlines:

Contract Signings Jump to Near Decade High – National Association of REALTORS®

Consumer Confidence in Economy & Housing is Soaring – KCM Blog

Morning Minute: Already got your taxes done? Find a checklist for how long you need to keep your tax records

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If you are ahead of the game and have already filed your taxes, you may be wondering how long you should keep all of your tax documents and other home records. HouseLogic has a great checklist, “How Long to Keep Tax Records,” that outlines what you should do with your important household documents from tax records and deductions to home insurance, warranties, home sale records and more. Read more.

In other headlines:

New Home Sales Rise 6.1 Percent in February – National Association of Home Builders

The 5 Best Home Improvements You’ll Ever Make – Realtor.com

CFPB proposes amendments to Equal Credit Opportunity Act – HousingWire

Morning Minute: Mortgage rates head lower this week

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Mortgage interest rates dropped this week with a 30-year, fixed rate mortgage averaging 4.23 percent and a 15-year, fixed rate mortgage averaging 3.44 percent, Freddie Mac reports today. The decline came after two consecutive weeks of rate increases and could signal some consumer uncertainty, according to Freddie Mac.

But the lower rates could be appealing to prospective home buyers who are starting to think about the spring housing market.

In other headlines:

Market a Home When the Garden Is Fullest – National Association of REALTORS®

New home sales surge, beat expectations in February – HousingWire