Listing Courtesy of KELLER WILLIAMS REALTY
Last week, The Wall Street Journal made it official: they had a slow news day. It was February 11 (that was Wednesday) when they ran the feature story, "A Gender Gap in Real Estate."
This was something Milton house hunters (not to mention those hoping to attract their attention) could certainly appreciate: an article about what men and women consider "very important" when it comes to features in homes. Author Adam Bonislawski based his story on National Association of Realtors® survey information; the results pointed to some dissimilarities between what women and men look for.
Now, I’ve had a good deal of experience helping both men and women house hunters in Milton, so it didn’t come as a complete surprise that their priorities differ. For instance, I was not at all surprised about the contrasting emphases the two put on the importance of having a walk-in closet in the master bedroom. The only surprise was that it was the men who found it much more important (38%-29%)!
What about house hunters’ feelings about the importance of kitchen appliances being new? Same phenomenon: men 38%, women 29% (possibly because appliances are gadgets, and men like the newest gadgets). How important is it that a home be single level? The sexes reverse: Male house hunters think it is very important 18% of the time; women, 31%. I’d bet that within the 18% that are masculine we’d find a disproportionate number of stay-at-home dads.
House hunters registered a big gap when it comes to rating 9-foot or higher ceilings as very important. A miniscule 8% of females agreed, while nearly three times that many of their male counterparts thought so (21%).
One harder to guess feature would have been the desirability of a kitchen island. Nineteen percent of male house hunters found it very important, versus just 8% of the females. Does this mean women are tired of entertaining? Do they no longer consider their masculine counterparts capable of sous chef action? Or is it that more men are taking over the cooking duties?
I’d have to admit, I’m less than certain that these national averages are 100% reflective of what house hunters in Milton prefer. Yes, Milton men certainly value attics (13%) more than the ladies (7%)—they do tend to spend more time up there (but neither are terribly committed to that form of high living). Basements are preferred by close to equal numbers.
Being that these findings are sort of interesting (not fascinating, perhaps, but at least sort of interesting), you might be wondering why at the beginning I thought it was evidence that the WSJ was having a slow news day. It’s because of some tiny print at the bottom of a graph, which gave the date of the NAR survey—all the way back in 2013! More up-to-date is what we find unfolding for today’s Milton house hunters: give me a call to get the latest!
A Sussex County short sale is a transaction in which the amount paid is not sufficient to cover the existing mortgage or property liens. Once the lender agrees to accept the lesser amount, the short sale succeeds, the lender calls it even with the seller, and all parties can move forward.
It’s a good thing to ‘unfreeze’ a property, yet short sales in Delaware can be tricky to close. In the worst-case scenario, a buyer and would-be short seller can be put on ice for a full year or more before the short sale succeeds. As is evident to anyone who has been through the process, a Sussex County real estate agent with short sale experience is essential for leading the way through the negotiations and closing.
In addition to working with a knowledgeable agent, it’s good to also approach a situation which might turn into a short sale by understanding the general precepts that influence those who will make the decisions. Usually, the mortgage-holding bank publishes how they wish to be contacted. Often, it’s through the “Loss Mitigation” Department (or a title to that effect). That language tells you all you have to know to explain why their attitude may be less than enthusiastic.
Like any commercial business, the bank’s decision-makers seek to minimize the time and man-hours needed to gain the best result. If you come to them with what is an obviously unreasonable offer, they are no more likely to react positively than any other seller. For this reason, researching the market value of nearby properties--enough so that it’s easy to show that your offer is based on a reasonable discount from those prices—is the best way to be taken seriously.
Although you shouldn’t be surprised if even a reasonable offer is turned down at first, don’t be afraid to counter with a second offer.
Depending on the circumstances, I sometimes advise my clients to decide on a viable time frame in which to either close the deal or move on. Not only will this prevent your wasting time, but it can motivate a loan officer to truncate what might otherwise become long-winded negotiations.
Short sales in Sussex County are still to be found for motivated and patient buyers. If you are looking to buy a home in the coming year, now is the right time to call me to start your search! 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.