Skip down to page content.

Real Estate Information Archive

Blog

Displaying blog entries 1-4 of 4

Questions to Ask When Searching For A Realtor

by Tucker Robbins

All your life, you have seen For Sale signs in front yards, and there’s always a Realtor’s name, and in these modern times, a photo of them.  How did the seller decide on that Realtor?  Did they open the paper to the classifieds, close their eyes, and point to a spot in the Homes for Sale section?  That’s very unlikely, and it may take a few interviews, but you and your Realtor should be a good fit.  

 

  • Any friends that have recently bought or sold their home can get you started on a reference list.  Ask them what they liked most/least, and what they would do differently. 

  • Look to the internet for initial research.  Go down your list and search for each Realtor’s listings, blogs, and testimonials. Record contact information of Realtors you’re most interested in. 

  • Call each Realtor and set up an appointment to meet for a Q&A session. 

  • Before your first meeting, familiarize yourself with real estate professionals terms, as each title has a different job. 

  •  

  • Have this list of questions to ask on hand at every meeting: 

  • - How long have you been in real estate? 

  • - Are you in the real estate business full-time or part-time? 

  • - Do have more buying or selling experience? 

  • - How many homes have you sold in the past twelve months? 

  • - Do you specialize in any certain neighborhoods or locations? 

  • - How many clients are you working with now? 

  • - What’s the best mode of communication for you? 

  • - Do you utilize the internet and social media to list your homes for sale? 

  • - What makes you stand out in our local market? 

  • - What should I know as a seller/buyer? 

  •  

  • - A good Realtor welcomes these questions and will be honest with you when they answer them. 

  • - Don’t be surprised if the real estate pro interviews you as well! They need to know about you as much as you need to know about them. 

  • - Meeting with potential Realtors help you see their personalities, and having good chemistry is essential to your Realtor-client relationship.  You will be spending a lot of time with each other. 

  • - References with contact information are essential and can help you seal the deal with the right real estate professional for you and your needs. 

  • - If the Realtor is new in the field, don’t count inexperience against them.  They should be eager to add your sale to their portfolio and want to offer you a great experience. 

 

Once again, you will be spending a great deal of time with your Realtor, on the phone as well as in person.  Rismedia has more qualities and information for Realtor-hunting before the home hunting begins.  You will be sharing a lot of personal information with them, and a good relationship is vital to the sale or purchase of your home.  All your research could lead to a long-term relationship, not just a real estate agent. 

 

Courtesy of New Castle County DE Realtors Tucker Robbins and Carol Arnott Robbins

Buying New Construction in New Castle County, DE

by Tucker Robbins

The thought of a brand-new, up-to-date home appeals to many, and if you’re considering buying a new construction, there are few things you should know.


Following these guidelines can make your venture a little easier. 

 

 - Before you make that first visit to the model home, find a real estate agent to accompany you, and keep them involved in every aspect.  If you wait until after you’ve talked to the builder’s agent, you lose the benefit of having buyer’s representation. 

 - Hiring your own real estate professional is wise, because you’ll have someone with your interests at heart. 

 - Shop around for the best loan in advance.  If the builder’s lender has incentives and discounts, consider this if it will benefit you in the end. 

 

Some questions to ask the builder’s agent on that first meeting: 

 - Ask for info about how many lots and homes have been sold. 

 - You need to know about each home site’s size, and how close each house is to each other. 

 - What is the investors ratio allowed in the community? This will tell you the rental the number of homes that are possibly rentals.  

 - What is the projected completion date for the new construction site? 

 - If the completion date isn’t met after we have signed a contract, is there a deposit refund or a cancellation clause? 

 - How long is the home’s warranty, and what does it cover? 

 - Is a garage or deck standard or an extra cost? 

 - Is smart technology wiring included in the basic home package, and is wiring to all bedrooms an extra expense? 

 - How much input do I have on paint colors, flooring, kitchen cabinets and bathroom finishes? 

 - What appliances are included? 

 - Is there a builder’s upgrade credit? 

 - Find out the what the builder’s policy is if they run short of materials. Most builders have the right to substitute, and you don’t want to be surprised to see mosaic tile where you thought subway tile would be in your finished home. 

  - Keep in mind that the model home you are shown has all the upgrades. Don’t assume you’re getting everything in your home that the model has. For instance, shelves and the latest organizational features are in the walk-in at the model home, but all of those could be upgrades.  - -Ask about these features and write everything down as you get answers. 

 - Talk to residents who are already living in the community, and ask them about any concerns they have, and what they love about their new home. 

 - Don’t skip getting a home inspection just because it’s new construction. Humans make mistakes, and it’s better to pay extra for a home inspection to find out everything is fine than deal with something that will cost a lot in the long run. Be sure your purchase contract allows you to hire an inspector outside the building company. 

 - If the model home is one of the last homes left in the neighborhood, ask about buying it! You may not get every finish just as you’d like, but you can paint a room or change the flooring if the cost of the house with all the bells and whistles is comparable to one that’s just been finished. 

  •  

Courtesy of New Castle County DE Realtors Tucker Robbins and Carol Arnott Robbins

 

Photo credit: realestate.usnews.com

Roof Inspection Tips in New Castle County, DE

by Tucker Robbins

Winter can be harsh on a roof, between the cold wind, rain, and snow and ice in some areas.  While on your Spring maintenance check, you should look carefully at your home’s roof, and see how it fared the season, and whether you have a DIY patch job to do, or a major roof repair that needs professional attention.  Keep the following in mind while you’re doing your inspection: 

 

  • - Cracked, curling or buckled shingles are an obvious problem. These should be replaced or repaired as soon as possible to prevent water damage and mold infestation. 

  • - Are your shingles dirty? Look in the gutters for tiny bits of the shingle granules.  If you find a lot of them, and not many are left on the shingles themselves, it may be time to re-shingle the roof. 

  • - Check around chimneys, vents, skylights, and anything else that is installed on the roof for any cracks or tears in the flashing beneath the shingles that could be allowing water to leak in. 

  • - Inspect carefully where tree branches could come in contact with the roof, to make sure they haven’t caused any damage from Winter winds. 

  • - Now would be a good time to check the eaves and gutters.  Make sure the wood is in good shape, and that gutters are clean and not loose. 

  • - If you think you may have especially bad soft spots in your roof, call a professional to climb up for a more thorough inspection.  

 

When you’re looking for roof damage, a great place to look is on the underside, and that requires an interior inspection. 

 

  • - Get into the attic and look for dark spots or obvious places where water has run.  Pay close attention if your attic smells musty and look for mold or mildew.  If you see any daylight shining through where it shouldn’t be, you need to check the corresponding area on the roof and get that repaired. 

  • - Check every inch of the top floor interior ceiling plaster or drywall for discoloration, crumbling, cracking or bubbling. 

  • - Don’t forget closets, cabinets, storage areas, and even wallpaper.  Use a very bright flashlight to help you see these hard-to-see places. 

 

Roofing materials can vary from asphalt shingles to stamped tin, and each one has a different way to inspect and repair.  Scott Yancey, real estate instructor and host of the television show Flipping Vegas, offers these tips for inspecting all kinds of roofing.  Your roof is the most important aspect of your home’s construction, and maintaining it is important to prevent costly repairs or replacement or expensive interior damage.   

Courtesy of New Castle County DE Realtors Tucker Robbins and Carol Arnott Robbins

Photo credit: crownhomeinspections.com

Curb Appeal Tips in New Castle County, DE

by Tucker Robbins

Obviously, the first thing a prospective buyer sees when they drive up to your house is the front outdoor space and exterior.  First impressions can make or break a sale! Bring your curb appeal to life with a few easy and easy-on-the-budget ideas. 

 

  • - Use a long-handled soft brush and mild soap and water to wash the front of your home’s exterior.   

  • - If you don’t own a pressure washer, rent one from your local home store and give the driveways and walkways a good cleaning, paying special attention to stains from fallen leaves. 

  • - Store away any personal items you have in the front garden, like statuary, monogram garden flags, and even the basketball goal over the garage door.  You want the buyers to imagine your yard as their own. 

  • - Trim or remove shrubbery and trees, or large plantings that don’t show off the front of your home.  If the job is too big, a professional may need to be called in. 

  • - Give the front door a fresh coat of paint in a bright inviting color, add a new welcome mat, and if necessary, install new hardware and clean up or add new house numbers. 

  • - Simply changing your old porch or yard light sconces can make a big difference in appearance, as most homes are shown during the day, but many house hunters drive around in the evenings, looking at homes on their want list, so you want the lighting to shine bright. 

  • - If you don’t want to invest in a lot of flowers in the landscape in hopes that you will be moving soon, cover the beds with new mulch.  For some color, place pots and containers in strategic areas filled with flowers and greenery. 

  • - On a large front porch, add a sitting area with an indoor-outdoor rug and casually arranged porch furnishings.   

  • - Fencing adds value to your home, but it needs to be in great condition.  Clean the fence, painting and repairing where needed. 

  • - Don’t forget the mailbox!  Inspect the post and mailbox itself carefully, and give it a good cleaning, or replace it altogether.  Some low maintenance plants around it will make it stand out. 

 

You want your home to give your potential buyers a great impression when they drive up.  They will likely have already scrolled through your home’s photos in the online listing, so it needs to look as great or better than what they’ve already seen.  These tips may seem insignificant to you, but look at your home through a buyer’s eyes, and do whatever is necessary to turn that first impression into a sale! 

 

Courtesy of New Castle County DE Realtors Tucker Robbins and Carol Arnott Robbins

 

Photo credit: kiplinger.com

Displaying blog entries 1-4 of 4

Quick Search

Contact Information

Photo of Tucker Robbins Real Estate
Tucker Robbins
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices
3838 Kennett Pike
Wilmington DE 19807
(302) 777-7744 (direct)