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20378 SILVER LAKE DR, Rehoboth Beach
$2,199,000
20378 SILVER LAKE DR, Rehoboth Beach
18 MARYLAND AVE, Rehoboth Beach
$1,345,000
18 MARYLAND AVE, Rehoboth Beach
28961 INDIAN HARBOR DRIVE, Bethany Beach
$935,000
28961 INDIAN HARBOR DRIVE, Bethany Beach
36891 JAHNIGEN DR, Frankford
$445,000
36891 JAHNIGEN DR, Frankford
23431 GODWIN SCHOOL RD, Millsboro
$325,000
23431 GODWIN SCHOOL RD, Millsboro
24969 CROOKED STICK WAY, Millsboro
$309,000
24969 CROOKED STICK WAY, Millsboro
30885 WHITE OAK RD, Dagsboro
$149,900
30885 WHITE OAK RD, Dagsboro
12888 RUSSELL ROAD, Bridgeville
$120,000
12888 RUSSELL ROAD, Bridgeville
WHITE OAK, Dagsboro
$70,000
 WHITE OAK, Dagsboro
319 SOUTH BOARDWALK, Rehoboth Beach
$4,700,000
319 SOUTH BOARDWALK, Rehoboth Beach
29 WHITE OAK RD, Rehoboth Beach
$2,595,000
29 WHITE OAK RD, Rehoboth Beach
10 PINE REACH RD, Rehoboth Beach
$2,500,000
10 PINE REACH RD, Rehoboth Beach

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Fall Prospects Quicken for Delaware Beach Luxury Home Sales

Sep 23, 2014

With summer drawing to a close (say it isn’t so!), it’s time to cast an eye towards the prospects for this year’s fall home sales market. Fall can be a great time to list a home, but it can be especially opportune for luxury home sales in Delaware. It’s a season that traditionally brings out serious buyers—those looking to find a home and complete the move before the holidays. If you are selling a property that falls into the luxury home category, before you roll up your sleeves and get to work in earnest, here are some broad-brush pointers real estate writers cite most often: 

Make Sure You Work With the Right Agent

Before you even begin other preparations, you can make the most efficient use of your time by first being sure you have recruited the right agent. Aim for a professional who has earned a reputation for successful luxury home sales in Delaware. A solid portfolio is the best demonstration that you’ve identified someone with the know-how (and the right contacts) that so often make the difference in luxury home sales.

Details Matter

Even more than with an average listing, Delaware luxury home sales depend on every detail being well handled. Don’t just have the windows cleaned—scour the screens, too. Don’t just put out a vase of flowers in the dining room—where tasteful, think about placing them by the beds; in the bathrooms, too. Make sure the entryway is always clear at every showing. In short, sell the dream of the picture-perfect luxury home. By treating every detail with care, you validate your luxury-level asking price!

Highlight Features

You know your property best—which gives you valuable insight into the features that make your home a standout. Make a list of additions, enhancements and luxury touches you have added, and other elements that would make any new owner proud. Where is the light most magical? When do the gardens burst with color? Your agent can determine which details will have the most impact in the each of the marketing media.  

Know What to Expect

With luxury home sales, it’s a good idea to always keep the nature of the market in mind. Luxury home sales in Delaware can happen quickly, but more often than with an average property, success can take a little longer. A good agent will let you know how long similar homes have taken to sell in your price range—it’s useful background knowledge. Most often, the key to luxury home sales is the quality of showings rather than the quantity.

If you’d care to hear more about what we can expect for this fall’s luxury home sales in Delaware, contact me today. I’ll be happy to share an up-to-the-minute market analysis—the best way to project the outlook for the upcoming market.

Clues to Analyzing Sussex County First Time Home Buyers

Aug 15, 2014

The upheaval in global financial markets over the past few years may have been unnerving for almost everyone, but among the hardest-hit group was first time home buyers, in Sussex County and across the country. Many had to deal with the stress caused by an uncertain economy, the fallout on business and job security, and, more directly, a pronounced increase in the difficulty of securing mortgages.

The good news for Delaware first time home buyers is how the national situation has stabilized. It’s confirmed by the increase in the number of people interested in buying a home for the first time—which has climbed out of the slump. The latest NAR (National Association of Realtors®) annual Profile—a yearly report describing home buyers and sellers—shows that new entrants into the residential market accounted for 39%, just 1% shy of the pre-crash mark.

 If you’re selling a Delaware home and have priced it attractively, it could pay to be mindful of this important segment of our market.

So just who are Delaware’s first time home buyers? That’s where the NAR report gives us some important clues. Three-quarters of first time buyers across the nation fall into the category of current tenants —those living in rented accommodations—with 18% still living with parents. As you’d expect, almost all (98%) of that segment hope to fund their purchase with a mortgage, with 81% preferring a fixed-rate loan. Some first time home buyers plan to use personal savings for the down payment, but many others plan to get help from family. (Sussex County home sellers take note: one possible incentive to make your listing stand out might be to include an offer to cover closing costs.)

Three-quarters of respondents were aged from 22-42. The single most common reason given for buying a home is to start a family (70%), and of those buying a home for the first time, 51% are married couples. With proportions like those, any home in a family-friendly area should benefit by pointing out attractions like local parks, playgrounds and superior schools.

Maybe the most interesting statistic in the report was that 28% of the first time home buyers were already making plans to move again within five years! It may follow that, at least in many cases, first time home buyers in Delaware may not want to deal with remodeling issues. Attracting them could be the final reason to bring your property into “move-in” condition.

Well thought-out marketing is the key to success with any listing, whether it’s catering to Delaware first time home buyers or to any other segment. If you are thinking of selling your own home, a call to me and a some preliminary groundwork on a marketing plan that will work for you is definitely in order!

Delaware Rental Property Investments: They're Out There!

Jul 21, 2014

 When any investor first begins to mull over the idea of acquiring a rental property in Delaware, it’s usually in competition with an array of other investment types—each with its inherent plusses and minuses. Some of them are new ideas (new technology company stocks; new forms of commercial exchange)—but real estate is definitely not one of those. It may not be innovative, but being a landlord has always been one of the leading sources of passive income.  

What is exciting about rental property is why it has always been recognized as a sound investment. When the income from a Delaware rental property is able to pay for its own underlying mortgage, it self-propels its growing equity. The rental property’s investment value grows as the loan is paid down month by month, year after year. Added to that is any appreciation in its market value.

And with the best Delaware rental property scenario, when rental income exceeds mortgage and other expenses, it will even throw off an extra income stream. Needless to say, choosing the right rental property in Delaware is worth the effort! Much of that effort involves making a serious effort to map out and project values, income and expense:

  • Neighborhood: Consider how the overall desirability of the neighborhood is likely to affect its appeal to tenants. Are there attractive amenities like parks, shopping and entertainment venues? What do the local classified ads reveal -- is the area’s vacancy rate high or low? How do rental prices compare with adjacent neighborhoods?
  • Project Ancillary Expenses:  Determine the historical property tax rates, and what future rate changes are being proposed. Likewise, investigate insurance costs and roll both expenses into your total monthly expense projections. You want to be sure that they are low enough that you can still make a profit from the rental.
  • Local Dish: Expert advice from Investopedia is for prospective landlords to speak with renters as well as homeowners in the neighborhood. It’s a good point: “Renters will be far more honest about the negative aspects of the area because they have no investment in it.”
  • Schools: Rental homes in Delaware featuring two or more bedrooms will attract families—and that means they will likely have children in school. If a school is nearby the home, it’s likely to be that much more popular with family tenants.
  • Crime:  Crime-prone neighborhoods can have higher turnover and longer vacancy rates, so a bargain purchase price may be less of a bargain than you’d hope.
  • Commute:  Is the property a long commute from the commercial center of town, or a quick drive? Is there public transportation? Many prospective tenants begin their housing search with their workplace as the center point. Renters will consider this before signing a lease—and you should before signing your offer!

If you are thinking of looking at rental property in Delaware this year, they’re definitely out there. Call me today to discuss some of the many opportunities!


Getting an Edge When You're Selling a Delaware Beach Home

Jun 23, 2014

This season, success in selling a home in Sussex County will depend upon the same factors as always: location; quality; buyer appeal.

A home’s location—short of calling in the house movers—is pretty much what it is. The structural quality of workmanship and the level of maintenance that it’s received though the years can be gussied up where it shows (and should be!), but that, too, is largely a done deal.

Which leaves that other factor in selling a Delaware home—the little things that reach out to appeal to buyers. The difference between receiving a swift offer and not can hinge on what makes your home more desirable than others in its price range.

A good example is with closet space. Any property with a closet organization system will carry great appeal to a large number of prospective buyers. Likewise, advanced technological touches can stick in buyers’ memories at the end of a long day of house tours. They don’t even have to be expensive or whole-house systems: a simple programmable thermostat that can be accessed on a smart phone can be an interesting selling point that sticks in the memory. It’s the kind of touch that isn’t a great deal of trouble to install—but it can provide the edge that makes selling your home that much easier.

More extensive tech-savvy features, like tricked-out media rooms or home offices wired to the hilt, are also very hot right now (especially for today’s younger homebuyers) and can provide the edge you’re looking for—if.

What’s the “if”?

If when you are readying your home for showings and open houses, you-

  • prep to emphasize each of these special features (like leaving that system-organized closet door open with the light on);
  • you make sure your agent is in the loop, ready to showcase key elements; and
  • stage to bring out less visible features—whether it’s printing up a list of newly-refurbished utilities or setting out a wine bottle and glasses with a note to “be sure to check out the killer wine cellar downstairs”

It’s also possible that some appealing features are ones that you take for granted; you’ve simply gotten used to them, yet they ought to be emphasized. Often those are details that your agent will be helpful in pointing out. Whatever is unique and desirable will make selling your home that much easier.

If you will be selling your own Delaware home in this season, I hope you will give me a call. There’s never an obligation, but if you wish, we can go over your property to uncover the marketing options that will make it a stand-out: the one with the edge!