First, a word about these Things to Avoid when you’re in the process of buying a Delaware house: it’s a short list.

The reason it’s so short is because of who you are—since you’re reading this, it means you’re someone who is taking the time to delve into what’s happening with Delaware real estate. That makes it unlikely that you will fall into any of the common-sense pitfalls that populate typical Top 10 Pitfalls lists. Most of them are pretty obvious to anyone who pays attention.

Less obvious are these three. These touch on areas which can be overlooked when time is short, or emotions are high—or the Delaware house is just so darned attractive you can’t wait to pull the trigger:

  1. Perfect house: no need to inspect! So sooooo wrong: the cost of an inspection in both time and money will always be some of the best investment results you can ever realize. It might seem as if you’re betting against your perfect deal by investing in an expert’s search for imperfections, but the opposite is true. A perfect house deserves a good inspection. Even if flaws are found that you are willing to accept because the rest of the deal is so attractive, knowing about your future property’s weak points will let you decide if and when to correct them—probably at less expense than if you are blindsided later on.
    1. Lack of spadework. Buying a house is such a far-reaching commitment, it’s unlikely to reward spur-of-the-moment decision making. Some otherwise quite intelligent and cautious consumers can become suddenly overcome by the impulse to stop paying rent to someone else!—and wind up buying a house that, while it does solve the rent-paying problem, does so less satisfactorily than need be. Especially for first-time homebuyers, taking the time to lay out a hard-headed budget in conjunction with minimum house requirements can make a huge difference in the coming years. The idea that you should take a year to plan any house-buying move is impractical in some cases—but it’s not a bad goal.
    2.  Not comparing mortgage terms. Low interest rates are certainly appealing (and today’s Delaware home loan rates are all of that). But before signing on the dotted line, don’t let the array of numbers and decimal-dotted percentages get in the way of making the best decision. No matter what the interest rate is, it’s usually the APR—the annual percentage rate that integrates the closing costs and other fees— that proves most useful for making comparisons between offers.

Avoiding these three is easy once you’re aware of them. There is also a way to red flag other possible missteps when you are buying a house: enlist the help of an experienced Delaware buyer’s agent. When you give me the call, you can rest assured I’ll be watching out for your interests—every step of the way! 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

If you go looking for insights from successful Delaware real estate investors, depending on which areas they concentrate on, you could come up with a variety of takes. Despite the distinct differences that separate the commercial and residential investment spheres, there are some time-worn truisms about the real life experience that would have most investors nodding their heads—

  1. Expect to work at it. The myth of buying real estate, watching it appreciate, then just cashing in is a two-dimensional expectation. A typical Delaware real estate investment has to be discovered, investigated, negotiated, cared for, cared for some more—and sometimes sold—for it to ring up the profits that make real estate investing so lucrative. The best investors relish doing all of it.
  2. Expect to interact with a wide range of people. Math skills are important, but people skills are up there, too. Just about anyone can do the arithmetic that produces accurate cash flow projections, but being able to network with real estate professionals and lenders—and manage close working relationships with tradespeople—are also vital for sustained success.
  3. Anticipate changing conditions. Economic conditions are always in flux, so Delaware and Delaware market conditions are always on the move. Last decade’s real estate investment strategies don’t guarantee success today—and certainly not tomorrow. Anticipating and planning for changing conditions is work that can pay real dividends.
  4. Expect losses. Any investment—including real estate investments in Delaware—involve some degree of risk. Serious real estate investors are those who profit the most from multiple investments over time. Necessarily, they expect that some projects won’t pan out as expected. Not expecting that to be true would be a rookie mistake.

This fifth one is ancient: it sounds like something Ben Franklin could have come up with:

  1.  A fast nickel is better than a slow dime. Strangely enough, this truism can be misinterpreted. One commentator thinks it means “owning real estate is easy; getting paid is tricky.” I think its core meaning is that knowing just when to sell is a terrific real estate investment skill.

In fact, you could say that prioritizing when to sell is what distinguishes real estate investors from most of the rest of us—real estate consumers who are contented Delaware homeowners. In my profession, I get to facilitate winning transactions for investors and real estate civilians alike. I hope you’ll give me a call for all your own 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

It was fairly clear that the table had been set for last week’s Federal Reserve meeting to result in a minimal rise in mortgage interest rates. Their Fed Funds rate directly influences the mortgage interest rates that banks observe. Since Delaware real estate activity can be spurred or dampened by the monthly payment amounts Delaware mortgage lenders offer applicants, this national story has meaningful local repercussions.

It wound up as a non-event that nonetheless spawned action—albeit in a minor way. In May, Chair Yellen had said that a rate increase would be “appropriate” over the summer months. In the lead-up to last week’s meeting, other Fed governors had strongly implied that it was now time for a slight Fed Funds bump.

Still, most commentators kept their prognostications vague; they had been vociferously anticipating a move for many cycles, only to hear serial postponements from the Fed. In addition to having been burnt before by Fed head fakes, there was also another reason why a no-go might happen this time around. Regardless of what the jawboning had been, economic and employment growth was still stuck in first gear—and a rate hike could retard improvement.

The commentators weren’t wrong to hold fire. Once again, the Fed did nothing (except make even more noise about an interest rate hike…later).

Yet, even so, the market forces that nudge mortgage interest rates one way or the other did seem to react. After the non-announcement, rates barely budged at first—but then continued steadily lower (the lowest in weeks, in fact). By week’s end, the Mortgage News Daily announced that the string of moves had brought mortgage interest rates into a “post-Brexit range”—similar to the conditions “that sent rates plunging toward all-time lows.”

The reasons last week were less than certain, although frustration with the Fed’s lack of coherence was fairly unanimous. CNBC interviewed big time investment manager Bill Gross, who said that investors were left “very confused” by the meeting’s outcome. He pointed to the likely rate raise that Yellen had emphasized at last month’s Jackson Hole speech, as well as to Fed Vice Chair Stan Fischer’s earlier assurance that there would be two hikes this year.

All this left Delaware mortgage interest rate watchers to make their own assessments about what to expect for future conditions—most importantly, whether current favorable low interest rates could be counted on for long. There had been at least one indicator that optimists could welcome. Almost unnoticed was a footnote to the Fed’s announcement. Back in June, the Fed had predicted the lending rate to end 2016 at .9 percent. It now said the likely number would be .6%. That would result in Delaware mortgage interest rates still comfortably in the historically low range—hardly a flashing red light for would-be borrowers.

Wherever the Fed heads eventually, it’s indisputable that right now Delaware mortgage interest rates remain fetchingly low—creating rare opportunities for buyers and sellers both. Why not give me a call to explore how you can take advantage today? 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

Nobody in Rehoboth Beach can escape the fact that we are now engulfed in the full-bore election year media onslaught. You would need to be living under a rock not to have noticed—and the rock would have to be somewhere out of earshot of radio and tv.

Fortunately, since this is a space where we discuss buying and selling homes in Rehoboth Beach, we try as best we can to steer clear of politics; so let’s enjoy this island of non-partisanship…or perhaps that’s impossible, because of the topic, which is too interesting to ignore…

Recently, a study came out of Stanford that answered an intriguing question: do higher taxes drive wealthy people out of state? If you ever plan on selling a high-end Rehoboth Beach home, the answer would be more than academic. Whether our own state’s position on the tax rate hierarchy could measurably affect high-end property marketability—that is, if the well-heeled set are beginning to allow changes in state tax tables to determine their home base—is very much at issue.

So this investigation (it was sponsored by the U.S. Treasury Department), which focused on millionaires, came up with the statistical answer to the question (as Forbes put it) of “Do High State Taxes Drive Away the Rich?

Apparently not.

For any agent running million dollar listings—or for any multi-million-dollar property owner considering selling their home in Rehoboth Beach anytime soon—that’s one fewer factor to have to address.  The study found that U.S. millionaires who earn over $1 million annually are actually one of the groups least likely to relocate to a new state. It could be because their seven-figure incomes are tied to their current locale; or it could be because in the rarified atmosphere mega-incomes provide, marginal tax rates don’t matter (I doubt that—high income folks usually have plenty to worry about, and taxes are certainly in there).

Also interesting: the lower your household income, the more likely you are to move. In a mobile society like ours, that seems to make good sense—and is somewhat reassuring. People are still chasing opportunity; are still motivated to go where jobs can be found.

So what does this mean for those selling a home in Rehoboth Beach? Or buying one?

That depends, as it almost always does, on your individual circumstances much more than on big-picture trends that can be analyzed on a national level. What is definite is that if you are thinking of buying or selling a home in Rehoboth Beach this fall, success starts with a solid, localized market analysis. Call me anytime! 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