Listing Courtesy of COLDWELL BANKER RESORT REALTY - R
Just as with movie credits, the features you find in Lewes listings have a “billing order.” The “stars” may not be printed in gigantic superstar type—but the order in which they appear do reflect changes in current buyer priorities. For a homeowner soon to add their property to this summer’s Lewes listings, it’s important to learn which features currently tend to attract the most favorable attention from prospective buyers. It’s of more than marketing interest, as well: knowing what’s in and what out can also help determine where improvement dollars should go.
The question is, which features are most desirable, and which formerly popular features have become passé: “so Twentieth Century!”
New answers to these questions usually appear a couple of times a year—and 2015 is no exception. The latest one I found was on the Realtor.com website. It went into recent history, describing in detail how listings’ features for newly-built homes have been undergoing rapid change over the past few years. In general (and probably as a reaction to the difficult economic times that only lately have seen improvement), over-the-top luxury details are fading, being replaced in favor of features centered on efficiency, organization, and pragmatism.
Examples of the kinds of details less likely to be found in today’s listings are two-story foyers, master bathrooms with whirlpool tubs, and luxurious details like outdoor kitchens. (“NOPE” in capital letters is shown stenciled over a picture of one of those outdoor kitchens…which, I have to admit, really does look like it belongs in a hotel). Whereas ten years ago, those outdoor kitchens with fancy wine racks might have been found near the top of a listing, today it might be replaced by ‘walk-in closets’ or even, simply, a ‘laundry room.’
“It’s not sexy,” says one industry executive, “but that’s what people want.”
The most extensive survey of home builder trends is conducted by their national association, the NAHB. By quizzing nearly 400 builders, they concluded that other features on the decline include outdoor fireplaces, sunrooms, and media rooms. Taking their places (and likely candidates for what we’ll soon see creeping toward the tops of some of our Lewes listings) are the walk-in closets (since people want to get out the door efficiently first thing in the morning) and well-organized and well-lit laundry rooms (to improve the efficiency of the household).
As part of a “post-recession cultural shift toward pragmatism,” this makes perfect sense. But that word “post-recession” may offer a clue to what could be the temporary nature of the NAHB’s 2015 findings. For example, granite countertops—once a ‘luxury’ item in Lewes listings—are now more popular than the laminate alternatives. And those supposedly unpopular media rooms are not vanishing totally. They’re simply being replaced by spaces that are “more flexible.”
If you’re soon to be scrutinizing your own home to determine which of its best features to emphasize, I’d be pleased to furnish an opinion—it will be based on the results we’re seeing from today’s Lewes listings! Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at email@example.com, visit more listings at www.beachrealestate.com.
Delaware property owners, whether they are single homeowners or large institutions holding multiple rental properties, are members of the same club—at least by one definition. They are all real estate investors, even though not all of them are the kind of Delaware property owners who keep an eagle eye trained on the value of their real estate investment portfolio (most of us think of it more as just “home”). Unless they plan to sell sometime soon, today’s asset value, book value, or whatever financial term you are looking at, is pretty much an abstract notion. It only becomes significant in the real world if you set your sights on selling.
Even so, Delaware property owners may be interested to learn that the past few years’ steady rise in property values nationwide has created the kind of investment opportunity that even Wall Street hasn’t been able to ignore.
Recently there was a conference in ritzy Scottsdale, Arizona, that illustrated the point. It was called the 2013 REO-to-Rental Forum. In their final MarketPulse newsletter of the year, trend-watcher Corelogic observed, “The fact that there are now conferences for single-family residential institutional investors speaks volumes about the increasing maturity of this new investment asset class.”
If you are a Delaware property holder, that’s welcome news. It indicates a number of positive things about the current state of the overall market, and the value of your own property. As CoreLogic points out, although investing in residential real estate is nothing new, what is new is the aggregation of large portfolios of properties under professional management —as well as “the availability of institutional investor capital to fund their acquisition.”
English translation: the smart money thinks single-family residences are a good investment.
Toward the end of the CoreLogic report was the latest year-over-year comparison: 12 ½% growths in home prices— even including distressed sales. It doesn’t take a Wall St. wizard to appreciate that kind of growth!
If the coming months will see you looking to sell (or buy) a Delaware property, give me a call/text 302-228-7871 or email me, Russell Stucki, REALTOR ® of Beach Real Estate Market to provide detailed information on Delaware homes for sale, investment and commercial properties, luxury and waterfront homes, condos/townhomes, new construction, lots and land, farms and equestrian properties located in but not limited to Bethany, Bethel, Bridgeville, Dagsboro, Delmar, Ellendale, Fenwick Island, Frankford, Georgetown, Greenwood, Harbeson, Laurel, Lewes, Lincoln, Milford, Millsboro, Millville, Milton, Ocean View, Rehoboth Beach, Seaford, Selbyville, Delaware.