Chicago Real Estate Lawyer HomeReal Estate Law ServicesAbout Rachell M. HorbenkoAbout the PracticeClient TestimonialsUseful LinksSpecials/CouponsFAQsReferralsContact Me

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This office serves clients in real estate transactions of all types. I also assist clients with estate planning for everyone, including the GLBT community, and represent Illinois condominium associations as needed. I help real estate investors who are renting their properties deal with difficult renter issues, and I advocate for renters dealing with difficult landlords.

I work with clients in Chicago and all over the Chicagoland area, including Wilmette, Skokie, Morton Grove, Plainfield, Wheaton, Glencoe, Lake Forest, Naperville, Oak Park, Winnetka, Des Plaines, Orland Park, Berwyn, Carol Stream, Arlington Heights, Crystal Lake, Barrington, Palatine, Park Ridge, Gurnee, South Holland, Park Forest and more.

My goal is to give each and every client personal, friendly and competent service at a reasonable price. I also strive to use technology in the best way possible to keep my clients informed.
My legal background includes working for a major Chicago developer and working for a boutique firm in their real estate division. I am also a landlord of a three flat building in Rogers Park and I am managing broker of a small real estate brokerage.

I work with all different types of clients, including developers, first-time buyers, buyers of second (or third!) homes, all sellers and the LGBTQ community.

My real estate blog is below. Please make sure to check back on a regular basis to check out what's new. I update my blog about once a week and welcome any questions that you may have.
Ask me too about help with personal injury, divorce, and any other legal issues! 

301 Greenview Drive, Crystal Lake, IL 60014
773.818.9054 office/cell
866.381.4238 efax

Recommend my site by clicking here!

Check out my interview, Expert Advice on Buying a Foreclosed Home on Illinois Homes, one of the top sites for Illinois homes for sale, including Wheaton, IL real estate. Illinois Homes also services Michigan homes for sale and Pennsylvania homes for sale.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

A Tiki Bar in Your Garage?

Since I've moved to the suburbs, I've noticed that many people don't use their garages to park their cars. They use them as workshops, or man caves. Check out what this designer did!

6:45 pm cdt 

Thursday, April 4, 2019

My Dad's Retirement

We went to Minnesota and celebrated my Dad's retirement last weekend. We had tons of family and friends help us celebrate. His retirement got me thinking about financial planning and estate planning. Do you have your affairs in order?



2:49 pm cdt 

Thursday, March 7, 2019

Daylight Savings Time!
Daylight savings time is this weekend. Along with the standard checking of batteries in your smoke/CO2 detectors, make sure you take a look at your sump pump battery back up and make sure it's in working order. With the snow we've gotten this winter, you'll want to make sure it's working!
4:35 pm cst 

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

A Word on Home Inspections...
I've had a few clients lately who have been upset with the results on the home inspection on the property they are selling. Just a note to keep in mind: Home inspectors are hired by the buyers. They are there to help the buyers make an informed decision on the condition of a home before they go forward. Did you do some work on the house yourself that the inspector points out isn't quite right? Did the home inspection find something that you weren't expecting? Don't take it personally, that's their job.
3:59 pm cst 

Friday, February 22, 2019

Estate Plan - Do You Have One?
Do you have stuff? Do you have kids? Do you have a beloved pet or two? If you have any of these things, you should have an estate plan. Whether it's a simple will or a trust, make sure your assets and loved ones are protected. Contact my office today if you're interested in seeing what I can do for you.
2:15 pm cst 

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Happy Valentine's Day!
While it's definitely not in the top 5 of my favorite holidays, I know people love Valentine's Day. Hope that you have an amazing day with loved ones!
4:30 pm cst 

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Spring Market is HERE!
The Super Bowl is over. Were you happy with the results? Unofficially the week after the Super Bowl means the start of the Spring market. With the weather that we've had, I'm sure it will be a slow start, but if you are thinking about putting your home on the market, now is the time. 
10:24 am cst 

Monday, October 1, 2018

Family Pets are Changing the Types of Homes People Purchase

According to, 87 percent of people consider the needs of their family pets when shopping for a home. In fact, 75 percent said they would pass on their "dream home" if it didn't accommodate their pet.

Do you have a pet? We have a cat Blackie and a boxer rottweiler mix, Willow, who needs a yard to play in.


3:47 pm cdt 

Monday, July 16, 2018

Should I Have a Home Inspection?

I've had a few clients lately that have chosen not to conduct a home inspection on the properties they are purchasing. There's always a reason: "It's a condo, what can be wrong?" or "I am trying to save money." or "I did a walkthrough of the place with my dad/contractor/uncle and it looks fine."

You're spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on the biggest investment you will make in a lifetime. I'm not saying that your dad/contractor/uncle doesn't know their stuff. But it's always best to have a third party professional give your house the once-over. Buying a home is not the time to try to save money on such an item, or to be cheap. One thing that is missed at your once-over could cost you thousands of dollars. What if the HVAC goes out? Or the sump pump?

Please, please, please. Pay for a professional home inspection. 

11:05 am cdt 

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Buying and Selling a Home on the Same Day

Whoa, it's been a busy summer! I have been so busy helping clients buy and sell. What's the most common thing I've seen? People buying and selling on the same day. It's required sometimes, but it can be precarious. Here's a few tips I have if you're doing a buy/sale on the same day.

1) Schedule your movers to move your belongings out the day prior to closing. Buyers do not want to do a walk through of your home prior to closing and see your belongings still there, or that you are still moving out. Buyers want to see your home clean and empty.

2) And speaking of clean and empty, don't leave trash in the home. Don't leave stuff in the fridge or the freezer. Broom clean condition is required, a professional cleaning service is nice. Don't leave big furniture or mattresses in the home that you don't want for the new buyer to deal with.  

3) Let your attorney attend your sale in the morning with your pre-signed documents. You don't need to be there and you have other things you can be doing during that time. You don't need to attend the sale of your home.

4) You DO however, need to attend the purchase of your new home, unless you've made arrangements with your lender and attorney to do otherwise. 

5) Don't schedule movers for 1:00 when your buy is at noon. Give yourself at least three hours for closing. They usually don't take that long, but are sure to if you have a moving truck sitting outside your new home. 

6) RELAX! Things don't always go perfectly when you're trying to coordinate a million things. Let your real estate professionals help you and handle the details. 

4:37 pm cdt 

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