It was the Washington Post’s real estate reporter Michele Lerner who came up with the list of the most important “10 things” house hunters look for when they stop by Bethany Beach, DE open houses.

The ‘ten things’ list is a useful one—and every bit as relevant for homeowners selling their own Bethany Beach, DE homes. It’s valuable to be aware of which features are bound to get the closest scrutiny in open houses—which are usually preludes for serious shoppers’ later appointment showings.

The list of ten could be shortened into four major categories:

1.      Most of the ‘ten things’ will get a nod from any experienced Bethany Beach, DE homeowner: they’re the structural elements that everyone who has ever born responsibility for a home will recognize as the most basic. The integrity of roof, basement, foundation, and fireplace are among them, as are the age and apparent condition of the mechanical systems.

2.      Some other features like window functionality and appearance of trim and fascia will reveal the quality of craftsmanship and the level of maintenance.

3.      Two of the ‘ten things’ dealt with water detective work. Plumbing bears scrutiny, as do evidence of flooding: foundation work, cracks in bricks (not just the mortar), or warping under sinks, cabinets, and vanities.

4.      The final group is actually just a single detail—one that was listed first: the front door and its fixtures. That’s important not only from the vital first impression it conveys but also as an indicator of how well the house has been maintained overall. I also think the good old “curb appeal” should be included in this group. After all, it comprises the actual first impression that precedes opening that front door.

Following her list, Ms. Lerner notes a rule for Bethany Beach, DE open house visitors to bear in mind. It is to remember their own priorities—and thus to be willing to accept a few less-than-perfect details if their own must-have list is satisfied. In other words, don’t demand perfection lest a good house slip through your fingers.

When it comes to following up on an open house visit—or getting your own home into shape for its own Bethany Beach, DE open house—being able to rely on the current and ongoing experience of a real estate professional can be decisive. I hope you’ll call me to provide that help! 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

Some of the finer house hunting pointers deal with uncovering a property’s not-so-visible elements. Your home inspector will inspect the state of the structure and the mechanical details it takes a professional’s trained eye to assess, but other factors might be critical, too. House hunting veterans can develop skills in appraising a property from a wider perspective than is possible from a single (or even a couple of) visits.

One such perspective calls for imagination: it might be called “seasonal thinking.”

As an imaginary example, consider the sprawling Bethany Beach, DE ranch that’s particularly attractively priced. It’s well below the neighborhood median per square foot and seems to have been well maintained, yet it has lingered long in the listings. Seasonal thinking could expose the reason: it’s because the quiet peacefulness it manifests in February will all but vanish when the now-deserted parking lot next door (behind the backyard fence) roars into life after Memorial Day.  

Likewise, the autumnal beauty evidenced by photographic displays in the den (and online in the virtual tour) might be significantly less alluring if the same angles were shot during the annual mudfests of March. A detached garage can be unimportant on a balmy afternoon—but a definite shoe-soaker during inclement weather. Or the sparse early August traffic flow might be very unlike what will take place once classes begin at the high school at the end of the block.

Now, it’s entirely possible that any of these factors which are deal-breakers for some don’t phase other house hunters in the slightest. What is important is that a future buyer not be taken by surprise by a seasonal transformation that wasn’t foreseen.

Seasonal thinking may be an acquired Bethany Beach, DE house hunting skill, but it’s one I supply for the benefit of my house hunting clients. Whether your own upcoming Bethany Beach, DE real estate interest will be as seller or house hunter, I hope you’ll include my help. Call 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

When you are planning to sell your Bethany Beach, DE home, the latest interest rate gyrations can become a worrisome element in your planning. Last week’s news should provide a measure of anxiety relief.

Back a year or two ago, when almost all the credible financial voices were united in predicting that Bethany Beach, DE’s historically low mortgage interest rates would soon be moving back up into more familiar territory, the effect was to prod buyers to get busy. Bethany Beach, DE sellers took note, as well.

Everybody knew that the imminent rate rises could make all the difference between a doable monthly mortgage payment and a budget-breaker. Frequently cited were examples like the one pointing out the difference that a single point could make on a typical $350,000 mortgage payment: more than $200 a month. There was extra pressure on some home loan applicants whose incomes were deemed sufficient at the original rate: they might be declined if rates rose.

As is now amply evident, those interest rate worries turned out to have been surprisingly wide of the mark—or at least severely premature. Last week’s news provided renewed reason for Bethany Beach, DE home buyers and sellers to put aside their mortgage rate anxieties for the moment. On Wednesday, the Federal Reserve reinforced their decision to hold the benchmark interest rate steady at the previously stated target range of 2.25% to 2.5%—which translates into a continuation of today’s temptingly low Bethany Beach, DE mortgage rates.

For Bethany Beach, DE mortgage rate watchers who remember that the March announcement included worries about a slowing economy, Wednesday’s pronouncement that economic activity “rose at a solid rate” is another indication that even the Fed’s governors have been surprised at the strength of the economy. For Bethany Beach, DE buyers and sellers, that’s exactly the kind of backdrop that encourages home buying.

This spring continues to deliver a letter-perfect backdrop for anyone primed to launch their own Bethany Beach, DE real estate initiative—both sellers and buyers. That makes it prime time to give me a call! 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

Lately, the common sense advantages to homeownership have been joined by a newcomer—one that doesn’t immediately leap to mind. It comes at an interesting time, as more and more of the national discourse focuses on healthcare issues.

The newest reason why owning your own Bethany Beach, DE home should have a high priority? Why it’s for your health!

That might sound like a bit of a reach if the only source behind it was the National Association of Realtors®. They do in fact point to recent studies that find homeowners “generally happier and healthier than non-owners.” Doubters inclined to question the validity of such a generalization might be reassured by the fact that the health outcome findings held up after being “controlled for factors such as income and education levels.”

It turns out that real estate industry promoters aren’t alone in finding a good health connection with owning your own home. In connection with World Health Day, the Habitat for Humanity group put together a “Health and Homeownership” paper. It linked one common sense phenomenon—the better condition of owned homes with those of rented homes—with health outcomes “including respiratory conditions such as asthma, exposure to toxic substances, injuries and mental health.” All in all, they felt confident in reporting “better health outcomes for homeowners.”

I’m standing by to offer healthy measures of help and advice for all your Bethany Beach, DE real estate dealings. Just call! 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