You can forgive those responsible for the Milton, DE family shopping if they tend to be suspicious when we go for long without hearing much about inflation. Last Wednesday’s Associated Press headline, “Yes, your grocery bills have gone up,” probably confirmed their feeling from recent supermarket forays. Earlier, the AP had already reported a summer surge at the nation’s grocery stores, illustrated by the fact that July rang up the biggest monthly gain since late 2018.  September’s rise (.4%) “was bigger than economists had been expecting,” constituting the sharpest rise since May, which was when pandemic-triggered shutdowns at food processing plants caused a 5.6% spike in prices.

Yet, inflation-wise, Milton, DE home budgets have emerged relatively unscathed this year. A combination of economic forces has caused the overall inflation rate to remain quiet for the moment. With this month’s release of Federal Reserve meeting notes having restated their governing board’s intent to continue to support an inflation target of “at least” 2%, it was clear that galloping inflation is not on the horizon. Of course, that’s for now—later is another matter.

In the grander scheme of things, Milton, DE homeowners should view inflation’s inevitable eventual return with less alarm than non-homeowners. A recent Forbes article on the subject (“How to Fight Inflation Through Real Estate Investing),” points out why, since “inflation is inevitable,” that’s true:

·         Appreciating value. Since, on average, property values have appreciated between 3% and 5% annually, they “not only kept up with inflation…but they’ve added value and gained appreciation.”

·         Increasing income (rents). For landlords, inflation is accompanied by increasing rents, which “will not only cover your monthly expenses…but will also generate $100-$400 per month in cash flow.”

·         Depreciating debt. At the same time that “your real estate asset is appreciating in value, your debt owed on the property is actually depreciating in value.” An example given was a $750 mortgage payment that, with inflation, was worth far less ten years later—an effect that continues to build.

Those three are potent reasons why Milton, DE real estate investments are considered reliable hedges against inflation—not just for landlords, but for regular Milton, DE homeowners, as well. Of course, they also get to live in their investment!

Call me anytime for expert advice on all your Milton, DE real estate dealings. Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com

As it relates to South Bethany, DE residential properties, the “location, location, location” homily is usually thought of as referring to neighborhoods. Homes in superior South Bethany, DE neighborhoods are visibly well cared for, usually have larger footprints, appealing architecture, etc. Their higher resale values are self-sustaining because their buyers can afford attentive maintenance.

But the locationX3 adage can also be valid for how a property is sited. South Bethany, DE listings that read like absolute steals online can sometimes prove the point (one that remote buyers without local representation can learn to regret).

A fabulous home situated in the wrong place can be a mistake waiting to happen.

Examples:

1.      An otherwise exceptional South Bethany, DE home sited on a busy thoroughfare (AKA, a “double yellow line value killer”) doesn’t lose appeal simply because of road noise or the hassle of getting in and out of the driveway—there is also prospective buyers’ apprehension about what will happen when it’s time to resell. The same home on a cul-de-sac automatically commands a higher price and swifter resale.

2.      The value impact of a major road within sight is a matter of degree. A faraway freeway can be value-neutral, especially if the nighttime view of streams of head- and taillights can be viewed as sparkling, jewel-like ribbons of color. But too close by—especially within earshot—buyers are more likely to find it off-putting.

3.      Longtime South Bethany, DE residents may remember when a corner lot was the preferred neighborhood configuration, but that assessment has been declining for years—partially because corner lots create greater side yards and smaller backyards, and partially because they create twice as much street exposure.

4.      A nearby airport can be promoted as a major convenience for frequent travelers—but one that’s close enough to constitute ear pollution can have the exact opposite impact.

5.      More equivocal are homes located on a dirt road. Sure, the car will get dirty—that and the possibility of wintertime travails can be negatives. But, depending on the property and neighborhood (and the buyer’s mindset), the same factor can also be seen as emblematic of an appealing lifestyle choice.  

Almost without exception, situations like these will be glaringly obvious upon a prospective buyer’s first visit. Exceptions do happen, though—especially when prospective buyers fall in love with something about a property. In that case, it’s only important that the buyer be fully apprised about what to realistically expect from the market if and when it’s time to resell. When you are a client of mine, that is absolutely certain to be the case! Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com

Georgetown, DE readers may have come across a worrisome prospect being suggested by some prominent real estate pundits: the likelihood that the steady rise in residential real estate values will trigger the emergence of a “renter nation.” That could develop if more and more people, priced out of the market, are unable to escape the financial downside of a lifetime of renting rather than owning.  

But wait!

Despite steady residential price rises, another group of experts is not so sure about the inevitability of that “renter nation” future. A handful of recently published estimates evidence a countertrend: the emergence of millions of renters now suddenly able to afford starter homes!

This is a consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic: one affecting large swaths of the American labor market. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, one recent estimate shows that “31% of workers who were employed in early March had switched to working at home by the first week of April.” The majority of jobs still require significant onsite presence, yet “…37% can be performed entirely at home.” This teleworking phenomenon means that millions of workers are now newly freed from the need to live within daily commuting distance of their workplaces. It follows that rural and exurban communities, where lower population densities allow starter homes to carry lower price tags, may emerge as practical alternatives for newly empowered home workers. So a “renter nation” America becomes less likely.

But wait!

Last week, the Wall Street Journal confirmed a “new reality” for at least some of the newly homebound workers: pay cuts. Citing the lower cost of living homeworkers encounter in their new exurban and rural communities, some Silicon Valley high tech firms are deciding to lower salaries “related to housing costs and other factors.” It’s an adjustment that would result in less of an exodus from higher-priced areas, bringing back the possibility of the future “renter nation.” TBD.

Lately, keeping track of the waves of projected trends is even more dizzying than ever. What remains is the long-term benefit that those who succeed in buying Georgetown, DE homes can reasonably expect. Call me to explore the latest Georgetown, DE offerings! Call/Text me Russell Stucki at (302) 228-7871, email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., visit more listings at www.beachrealestatemarket.com