Illinois Real Estate Firm Becomes First in U.S. to Offer LGBT Division

LGBT Client Services Division Launches with Online Tools, Community Outreach

PR Newswire

CHICAGO, March 31, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Until now, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) couples in Illinois — (as in most U.S. States) — faced a number of historically significant challenges and hurdles, especially when it came to the sale or purchase of a home. Generally, members of the LGBT community had to rely upon a number of complicated legal instruments to help them achieve their dreams of joint home-ownership.  That is changing rapidly in Illinois.

"This change in legal status is affording LGBT couples a range of new opportunities, including helping to 'simplify' the process of joint home ownership. That's why we created the Dream Town LGBT Client Services Division — the first of its kind in the nation," explained Yuval Degani, President of Dream Town Realty.  "As these new families begin to form, we know that many will have questions about the implications this change in legal status will have on their home finance options, title transfer, real estate taxes and other significant residential ownership issues."

"We fast-tracked our plans for launching Dream Town's LGBT Client Services Division — following a dramatic Federal Court ruling on Friday, February 21 that moved the 'official' start date of legal Same-Sex Marriage for residents of Cook County up by a full 3 months," continued Degani.  "Our strategy for the new LGBT Division has been in the works since last fall's passage of Illinois' landmark "Religious Freedom & Marriage Fairness Act."

"We're committed to making sure that the LGBT community has all the tools they need to fully understand their newly won real estate rights & responsibilities," said Todd Szwajkowski, newly appointed President of Dream Town's LGBT Client Services Division.  "The LGBT community is extremely important to the business vibrancy of the Chicago area.  Applying national trends to the Chicago economy suggests that the purchasing power of this demographic is in the neighborhood of $30 billion."

To specifically address how legal changes will impact LGBT buyers and sellers — Dream Town Realty is taking the lead on making available a number of resources to assist them with navigating through the complex issues, in order to make the most of their opportunities in this evolving landscape.

Dream Town Realty's comprehensive LGBT strategy includes:

  • Online Resources including custom created content for LGBT buyers and sellers, as well as links to credible third party (and official local/state/federal government) sources — all available free of cost or obligation at the dreamtown.com/LGBT "landing page."
  • Ongoing Informational Events & Community Outreach — including a free event, billed as "Pride of Ownership," to be held on April 26 from 1 to 4 pm at the Center on Halsted (3656 N. Halsted Street in Chicago).  The panel discussion will feature subject matter experts — including tax lawyers, mortgage specialists, real estate authorities, and community leaders — offering insights and answering LGBT buyer and seller questions directly.  RSVP online at dreamtown.com/lgbt
  • Access to Award-Winning Sales Consultants — many of whom self-identify as LGBT — with deep personal experience and understanding of the issues faced by members of this diverse community … coupled with years of professional expertise and top-flight training.

Among the topics addressed by the Dream Town LGBT Client Services Division:

  • How specifically is buying a home different for Same-Sex Couples?
  • Specialized Housing & Mortgage Considerations for Same-Sex Couples
  • Establishing Property Rights for a Same-Sex Legal Relationship
  • Distinctions Between Married and Unmarried Partners and Real Estate Ownership, and making the transition from Civil Union to Legal Marriage.
  • Survivability & Inheritance Issues
  • Credit & Tax Liability Issues for Same Sex Partners

"Dream Town's definition of family has always been inclusive ... driven by a heartfelt respect for all our clients and real estate consultants," noted Aime Klujian, one of Dream Town's LGBT Client Consultants. "We're a close knit family of sales professionals, passionate about real estate … small enough to 'know you' and big enough to have available every resource needed to make your experience smooth, stress free, and successful … and we're proud that this certainly includes the members of Chicagoland's valued LGBT community."

About Dream Town Realty:

Recognized as an innovative leader on the Chicago real estate scene — Dream Town Realty's culture is anchored in integrity, professionalism, personal growth, learning and community service.  A recognized pioneer in the interactive real estate marketing space, Dream Town offers proprietary technologies and expansive online capabilities that enable buyers with the most advanced Internet home search in Chicagoland.  The vision of a forward-thinking entrepreneur with a passion for all things real estate, family and community — today Dream Town is the go-to source for those in the market for residential or commercial real estate.  Yuval Degani leads the company's strategy and business with an eye toward technology, diversity, and exceptional customer service.

Media Contact:  Jim Schiefelbein, 312-927-3203

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